Cillian Murphy Smoked Over 1000 Cigarettes In One Season Of ‘Peaky Blinders’

Alfie PowellAlfie Powell in Entertainment, TV
Published 31.07.19
Stay in the loop. We've got you covered
We'll soon be launching our easy-to-digest daily roundup of everything you need to know.
Your email address will be shared with The Hook and subject to its privacy policy.

Cillian Murphy worked his way through over 1000 cigarettes during just one season of Peaky Blinders and you know, that’s objectively a lot.

You couldn’t have predicted that something set in the very grim and grey world of 1920s Birmingham would have taken the world by storm, but then I suppose nothing expected can never becomes a hit in such a way.

We’ve all waited a long time to see Tommy Shelby back, played by the indomitable Cillian Murphy and now here he is, with his gruff midlands accent stealing the hearts of our girlfriends right in front of our very eyes…

With the fifth season on the way after a trailer dropped yesterday, Shelby clan are all the craze right now, with the cast taking part on interviews all over the place.

tommy shelby smoking

It was in one of these interviews though that it was revealed that lead actor Cillian Murphy once smoked over 1000 cigarettes during one season.

Helen McCrory – Polly – revealed this during a Q&A with the BFI.

As Birmingham Live have it, she said:

Let me show you my lungs.

Cillian apparently, and I can’t remember which season, the props guys reckoned about a thousand.

No actors were killed in the making of Peaky Blinders. We don’t inhale.”

peaky blinders smoking cigarettes

It’s weird isn’t it? Smoking isn’t cool, but when you see Tommy there with his three-piece smoking his rolled up cigarettes from the metal box he keeps them in, lighting a match and throwing it away, you can’t help but think he’s the coolest man in the world.

With all of that said, it’s actually illegal to smoke real cigarettes on set in the UK these days and they actually used the herbal variety (no not weed).

Along with that, the whisky is actually coloured water so everyone was actually rather boringly perfectly sober.

cillian murphy 1000 cigarettes

That probably makes for a better show at the end of the day though, and if creator Steven Knight is to be believed, this is the best one yet.

Speaking to TalkSport back in February, he said:

I can honestly say that it [season five] is the best yet. It’s really good. It’s fantastic and it all fell together beautifully. Great performances and I think audiences are going to be on the edge of their seats.

I did some research because the new series starts in 1929. In that era, some of the most notorious gangs were in Glasgow. This [season] is about a particular gang called The Billy Boys, who become an issue for our friends in Birmingham.

Scottish bad guys eh, two very strong accents clashing. This should be fun.

Images via BBC