It’s no surprise that Thomas Shelby enjoys a cigarette. Furthermore, he is arguably the most sexiest fictional smoker of all time.
Tommy Shelby rubs cigarettes on his lips before smoking, and there’s a good reason for it, according to Cillian Murphy.
With the new season of Peaky Blinders in full swing, viewers have been reacquainted with a much-changed Tommy Shelby, who has now abstained from alcohol.
One thing that hasn’t changed is the way the character smokes his cigarettes.
According to the BBC, Murphy rolls the cigarette filter in such a way that it does not stick.
“That comes from the fact that the cigarettes, we cut the filter off, or do we leave them on? I can’t remember… but if you don’t rub them across your lips initially, it will stick.”
”That just became this sort of idiosyncrasy, but it was out of necessity, because otherwise the cigarettes would stick to my lip. And then I just kept doing it and it became a Tommy thing.”
“These things develop over the course of the show, you know?”
He then went on to explain how the cast and crew got through the first two seasons of Peaky Blinders before recognizing we’d never seen Tommy eat before.
“So then we made it a kind of running gag,” Murphy explained, “Throughout the 36 hours of television, Thomas Shelby never consumes anything. Except I think, once he consumes a sprig of mint when he’s with his son.”
“So these things develop, when you have the luxury of being with a character for so long, these little things arise.”
While chain smoking is important to his character, Thomas Shelby wouldn’t be Thomas Shelby without his legendary haircuts – and Murphy explained that his fresh trim in Series 5, when it was the most extreme (“a zero blade”), required a lot of TLC to stay fresh.
“That required daily attention,” he added.
“Growing it out is traumatic, you know, because it doesn’t look good,” he continued.
Without Helen McCrory’s riveting portrayal as matriarch Polly Gray, the opening episode of the new season was always going to be sad and odd.
Although the performer died suddenly last year at the age of 52, her presence was felt on the first episode of season six.
She is laid to rest near her image in a wonderfully filmed burial scene, as the camera wanders between the grief-stricken expressions of her family members.
We follow the smoke up into the skies as the fire burns, where Polly’s eyes can be seen peering down from the sky above.
“Poignant moment in #PeakyBlinders showing Aunt Polly’s (Helen McCrory) portrait in the middle of the screen and showing it slowly being cremated with the cast watching on.” one Twitter user wrote.
“No no no not Polly I’m sobbing obviously I knew this would happen but my god #PeakyBlinders.” another person said.
“OMG THATS HOW THEY GOT RID OF POLLY #PeakyBlinders.” a third person wrote.