Cillian Murphy has started filming the fifth series of 'Peaky Blinders' with his character set to face his "darkest force" yet.

Cillian Murphy

Cillian Murphy

The 42-year-old actor's alter-ego Tommy Shelby will be up against it more than ever when the popular BBC drama returns as the Shelby family try to deal with the 1930s following the financial crash of 1929.

Creator Steven Knight said: "The story of the Peaky Blinders and of the Shelby family gets woven into the political fabric of Britain and Europe as the 1920's end and the thirties begin.

"Tommy Shelby faces the darkest force he has ever faced and his struggle is as relevant today as it was then."

The series will see Tommy approached by a charismatic politician who has a bold vision for Britain, but his response will be a huge decision for both his family and Britain.

Caryn Mandabach, executive producer, added: "Steve's Birmingham saga becomes more fascinating and more relevant with every chapter. This one promises to be the best yet.

"I'm truly grateful to the BBC for their support of such thrilling, immersive and resonant storytelling."

Helen McCrory, Paul Anderson, Sophie Rundle, Finn Cole, Kate Phillips and Natasha O'Keefe will all return to the series, as will Aidan Gillen and Jack Rowan.

The fifth season - which started filming in Manchester last month - will see the show make the move from BBC Two, which has been the programme's home since 2013, to BBC One, following huge ratings and several awards.

BBC director of content Charlotte Moore said in a statement: "'Peaky Blinders' is world class drama at the top of its game and the time has arrived for it to move to the UK's biggest channel.

"Steven Knight's epic storytelling is authentic and utterly compelling and I want to give it the chance to be enjoyed by an even broader audience on BBC One. We couldn't have asked for a better response to series four and the impact it had with young audiences."

The most recent series of the gangster drama reached an average audience of 3.3 million, and the show recently scooped a BAFTA for Best Drama Series.

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