Severely underutilized in recent film such as “In Time” and “Tron: Legacy,” though he had a more prominent role in the the thriller “Red Lights” which no one saw, Irish thesp Cillian Murphy is headed to the small screen for a leading role, teaming with “Eastern Promises” and “Dirty Pretty Things” scribe Steven Knight and BBC2 for the six-part period gangster drama “Peaky Blinders” (Memo to BBC: you might want to change that godawful title).
Murphy will play Tommy, the most ruthless brother in a family of gangsters that rules the lawless post-war slum neighborhoods of 1919 Birmingham, England as returning soldiers, revolutionaries and criminals fight for survival. The family is known by the film’s title, which is a reference to their practice of sewing razor blades into the peaks of their caps. As the family’s leader, though, things go off course for Tommy when a Belfast police chief and a mysterious, beautiful woman comes into town.
Considering what Knight was able to create for David Cronenberg and Stephen Frears, we’re hoping this can become work of that caliber though that may rely heavily on a strong directorial talent coming on board. Ideally, we’re envisioning something like the similarly themed HBO show “Boardwalk Empire” under Martin Scorsese‘s guidance. Too hopeful? We’ll soon see. Lensing begins this September for a 2013 U.K. debut. [Deadline]