By Oliver Gettell
Updated January 14, 2016 at 10:04 PM EST
Credit: Dave Benett/Getty Images

Ian McKellen has joined the chorus of voices remembering Alan Rickman, offering a touching tribute to the “matchless” actor and friend who died from cancer Thursday at age 69.

“There is so much that is matchless to remember about Alan Rickman,” McKellen wrote in a message posted to Facebook. “His career was at the highest level, as actor on stage and screen and as director ditto.”

McKellen, who costarred with Rickman in the 1996 TV movie Rasputin: Dark Servant of Destiny, described his fellow actor as “a constant agent for helping others,” a “dream-list dinner guest,” and a soul who was by turns “hilarious and indignant and gossipy and generous.”

McKellen also expressed hope that Rickman’s passing would draw attention to his recent film A Little Chaos, which Rickman directed, co-wrote, and starred in.

He concluded, “Behind his starry insouciance and careless elegance, behind that mournful face, which was just as beautiful when wracked with mirth, there was a super-active spirit, questing and achieving, a super-hero, unassuming but deadly effective.

“I so wish he’d played King Lear and a few other classical challenges but that’s to be greedy. He leaves a multitude of fans and friends, grateful and bereft.”

Read McKellen’s full remembrance below.