Peaky Blinders 6 pays tribute to Helen McCrory in opening episode

28 February 2022, 19:32

Helen McCrory plays Polly Gray in Peaky Blinders
Helen McCrory plays Polly Gray in Peaky Blinders. Picture: Press
Radio X

By Radio X

The hit BBC drama, starring Cillian Murphy, kicked off on Sunday 27th February and dedicated its first episode to the late actress.

Peaky Blinders has dedicated the first episode of its final series to the late actress Helen McCrory.

The actress starred as the Shelby family matriarch Polly Gray in the BBC series but tragically passed away from cancer last year, aged 52.

Her character's absence was written into the plotline of the opening episode of the latest series, with news of her off-screen passing having a significant impact on the gangster family.

The closing credits also included a tribute to "the memory of Helen McCrory OBE".

The show's creator Steven Knight had described Helen's loss as a tragedy at the series' premiere in Birmingham last week.

He said: "After she'd gone we knew she wanted this thing to continue and we hope we have continued in a respectful and appropriate way and moving forward she will always be a part of Peaky."

Cillian Murphy, who plays the lead character Tommy Shelby, recently insisted that the presence of Helen's character is still "very much felt" during the series.

READ MORE - Peaky Blinders 6: Everything we know about the final season so far

Cillian Murphy previously revealed how it felt "strange" being on the set of the hit show without McCrory.

Murphy, who heralded the star as "so f***ing brave and courageous", admitted it was a "confusing" time grieving for someone "so young" and so close to him.

"We were just reeling throughout the whole thing," he told Esquire. "She was a dear, dear pal and she was the beating heart of that show, so it felt very strange being on set without her.

"The difficult thing to comprehend is that, if it wasn't for Covid, there would be a whole other version of this show with Helen in it. But she was so private and so f***ing brave and courageous. She was inspirational."

He added: "People throw that word around, but she genuinely was. Her values, the way she dealt with her kids and Damian [Lewis, the actor, and McCrory's husband of 14 years]... She cares about everybody. She's really funny

and really cool, and she had this real warmth. She really cared. It's just... I still can't believe she's not here. It doesn't make sense."

"I've never lost anyone like that — who was young and a friend. It was very confusing. But she was magnificent. She was an absolutely magnificent person."

Talking about McCrory's beloved family and the show's intentions to pay tribute to her, he said: "My thoughts are always with Damian [Lewis] and her kids. I just hope that the show will live up to her memory and our memory of her."

Watch the trailer for Peaky Blinders Season 6

Peaky Blinders season 6 continues Sundays on BBC One and on BBC iPlayer.

READ MORE: Cillian Murphy says it was "strange" on set without Helen McCrory


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