Esquire (UK) - - Contents -

A round-up of the high­lights and mem­o­ries from this year’s four-day ex­po­si­tion of men’s style, arts, sports, fit­ness, com­edy, ad­ven­ture, food and drink in Lon­don. Left: Peaky Blin­ders pan­el­lists Cil­lian Mur­phy, Edith Bow­man and Steven Knight

Peaky Blin­ders creator Steven Knight and star Cil­lian Mur­phy dis­cussed the hit TV show’s con­tin­u­ing — and to them, at least, sur­pris­ing — pop­u­lar­ity with su­per­fan Edith Bow­man (who clearly isn’t the only one). On find­ing an au­di­ence

Knight: “It’s just so bizarre, there’s no huge pub­lic­ity bud­get, it’s not been mar­keted mas­sively, but peo­ple find it. That’s the thing, that in this world, if you do some­thing of value, hope­fully peo­ple will find it.”

On why mu­si­cians like the show

Mur­phy: “I don’t know why but I have friends who are mu­si­cians and they re­ally love it. They all love the sound­tracks and there’s some­thing quite wild about the char­ac­ters, maybe that’s the rea­son. When peo­ple are will­ing to give their mu­sic to the show, like Radiohead… When does that hap­pen?”

On David Bowie

Mur­phy: “He was such a huge fig­ure for me grow­ing up in terms of what you should do, and what you can do as an artist. He was also a fan and gave his mu­sic to the show. We sent him the cap from se­ries one, and he loved it.” On Snoop Dogg be­ing a fan

Knight: “Yeah, Snoop Dogg was on In­sta­gram on his pri­vate jet say­ing, ‘I’ve just seen this new show called Peaky Blin­ders’. Then his agent con­tacted mine, so I met him for, like, three hours. He said the show re­minded him of how he got in­volved in gang cul­ture. And this is Birm­ing­ham in the Twen­ties, and he’s from south-cen­tral De­troit.”

On the ‘Peaky style’

Knight: “There were all of these work­ing-class youth cul­tures around, and this gang had a par­tic­u­lar look that evolved. By the time the Twen­ties came in, it evolved to the cap, with the ra­zor-blades and the cra­vats. Men re­ally put ev­ery­thing into how they looked.”

On im­prov­ing all the time

Mur­phy: “What I love is that four se­ries in it’s still get­ting bet­ter. You know, how the fuck can that hap­pen? But it’s still hap­pen­ing, which I think is re­ally un­usual.”

On the fe­male char­ac­ters

Knight: “Peo­ple say you write strong parts for women but I don’t un­der­stand why any­body wouldn’t. It’s just the way it is and to choose not to reflect that is a de­ci­sion.”

Peaky Blin­ders S4 is on BBC2/iPlayer now


Lead Cil­lian Mur­phy and creator Steven Knight with host Edith Bow­man

Fa­mous fans of the show have in­cluded Leonard Co­hen, Brad Pitt, Radiohead, David Bowie and Snoop Dogg

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