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Playwright David Hare and Peaky Blinders Creator Steven Knight Pay Tribute to Helen

“She Lit Up the Screen”

by David Hare and Steven Knight | Radio Times | April 27, 2021

David Hare Section:

One Saturday night in 1995 I sat down to watch a Screen Two film on BBC2. Streetlife, written and directed by Karl Francis, was about a single mother in a caravan in Wales, struggling to provide for her young child.

Although the material was bleak – Jo kills her child because she despairs of her future – it was played with the most extraordinary humour and vitality by a young actor I’d never seen before. She wore a tiny mini skirt, sparked with brave life, and gave one of the most moving performances I’d ever seen on TV.

Continue reading Playwright David Hare and Peaky Blinders Creator Steven Knight Pay Tribute to Helen

Categories Peaky Blinders Tributes

‘There will never be another you’ — Dublin artist creates stunning mural in honour of Helen McCrory

Aunt Polly Immortalized

by Eva Wall | | April 26, 2021

A Dublin-based artist has created a stunning mural to Peaky Blinders star Helen McCrory, who passed away earlier this month.

On April 16, the sad news broke that Helen had died of cancer at the age of 52, sending fans, friends and industry colleagues alike into mourning.

Helen’s husband, British actor Damian Lewis, paid tribute to the mother of his two children, describing the actress as a ‘beautiful and mighty woman’ who had lived ‘fearlessly’.

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Categories Peaky Blinders Print Media Tributes

So long, Aunt Polly

Remembering ‘Peaky Blinders’ star Helen McCrory

by James McMahon | April 16, 2021 |

It’s a gross failing of Britain’s entertainment industry that there’s a time of life when women fall off our screens. There’s no absence of roles for twenty, thirty and forty-somethings. Turn 60 and, if you’re lucky, you can navigate the journey to retirement via the sort of roles Helen Mirren or Dame Judy Dench have made their own. But in your fifties? Not so much. If you’re a woman in your fifties who likes sex? Drinking? Y’know, an authentic representation of a woman in middle age? No chance.

It would be wrong to say that Helen McCrory – who has died aged 52 from cancer – changed this. But her role as Peaky Blinders’ chain-smoking matriarch Polly Gray has made such an impact that it will surely lead to future change. Her casting as Aunt Pol in the interwar crime drama went under the radar in 2013; the show’s lead, Cillian Murphy was a far bigger name. But it was far from undeserved. Anyone who has three Harry Potter movies on their resumé, an acclaimed West End career, has worked with the great Martin Scorsese (in 2011’s Hugo) and played her part in making 2012’s Skyfall the best Bond movie of the modern era is worthy of a punt.

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Categories Interviews Peaky Blinders Print Media

Helen McCrory Interview: The Chap

Peaky Blinders Season 5

by Gustav Temple | The Chap | November 29, 2019

Gustav Temple meets the star of Peaky Blinders, whose character Aunt Polly not only holds the entire Shelby family together, but also wears the most stylish outfits.

I’ve talked to your co-star Paul Anderson and creator Steven Knight about the men’s styling of Peaky Blinders. What was your experience in the costume department? Did you have any say in what you wear as Aunt Polly?

I’m a real pain in the neck when it comes to costume, because it’s really important to me. I’ve always really designed what I’ve been wearing alongside the designer, because it makes an enormous difference to how you move, how you’re perceived and how you feel. So right from the beginning when we started Peaky, I wanted Polly to have a very tight silhouette, so they were saying, ‘This is the period, it’s drop-waist…’ and I said, yeah, I’m not wearing that. We need a corset and a hobble skirt and boots up to the thigh, and everything a size too small, tailored within an inch of its life. We need massive hair, with pins I’m going to stab people with, things I can whip out of fur, I need a gun on the inside thigh in a garter. It should all make me feel a certain way.

Continue reading Helen McCrory Interview: The Chap

Categories Media Peaky Blinders Print Media

Helen McCrory talks epic build-up and necessary violence in ‘Peaky Blinders’ season 5

What’s in Store for Fans in Season 5?

by Molly Given | Metro US | October 1, 2019

Helen McCrory

Helen McCrory talks epic build-up and necessary violence in “Peaky Blinders” season 5.

In the epic gangster family series “Peaky Blinders” there is always a lot of action going on. Over the course of five seasons, some would say the explosions have gotten bigger, the fights bloodier and the characters more colorful than ever. With the series’ lifeline plot mounting on the success of the combative Shelby family, it’s easy to see why the addicting story line’s only option is to escalate. With the highly anticipated season 5 in the midst, many are wondering what could be in store for the band of polarizing individuals that make up the “Peaky Blinders.” Helen McCrory, who plays the fiercely sharp matron of the family, Polly Gray, sat down with Metro to give the scoop on season 5, talk the progression of the characters, and dive into why the violence in the show is completely warranted and even essential.

A lot has happened over the past five seasons. I’m curious to see what progressions you’ve personally seen with your character, Polly Gray?

Continue reading Helen McCrory talks epic build-up and necessary violence in ‘Peaky Blinders’ season 5