We just got a much better idea about when Peaky Blinders season 6 will come out than we had yesterday. That said? Netflix may be streaming the new episodes a little later than some would like (more details below). But we're willing to wait for the Brummie gang. The series has been off the air for a little over two years, so we're more than ready for to get answers to the questions left after season 5’s finale.
We still don’t really know what went down at the end of last season. What’s the deal with Oswald Mosley? Will Tommy succumb to the mounting hysteria of his psychotic visions? And what of the stark business proposition that Gina and Michael gave to Tommy?
The fact is, the Peaky Blinders season 5 finale served up something that fans have never encountered before: that of Tommy Shelby’s (Cillian Murphy) meticulous planning falling apart, plus his most trusted relationships crumbling around him.
Was he outwitted, betrayed or even both? With season 6 set to be the rollicking Brummie gangster series’ last outing, we can't be sure what will become of the Shelby clan — but we're certain that things aren't looking good.
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Peaky Blinders season 6 release date speculation
Star Conrad Khan revealed that Peaky Blinders season 6 is coming in February 2022. That said, even that statement was noncommittal, as he said "these things change so quickly." But that is in line with what we've heard, as comments from director Anthony Byrne to Digital Spy gave us reason to know what to expect — and ideas on when to expect it.
Per the news of production wrapping (see below) the Peaky Blinders season 6 release date should be around late 2021 or early 2022. Of course, the BBC gets first crack at the series, typically, before it hits Netflix. One wonders if the U.S. Netflix will get episodes on the same day as BBC One, since the U.S. doesn't have that channel (Just BBC America and World News).
That delay is confirmed by Byrne's statement that the seasons require six months of editing after production has finished. Which, given that production ended on May 28, would mean that Netflix could have the series in its hands as early as the end of November. It's not clear how quickly the show could then air, but it is possible it could appear before the end of this year. That said, early 2022 seems more likely to us.
The only reporting going on for the release date comes from Geo News, which isn't exactly a proven player in these leaks. They quote "unconfirmed reports" (which they don't link to) that claim Peaky Blinders season 6 will "premiere in the last week of September 2021." There's no reason, at present, to think that it will be as early as that — but of course we'll be delighted if that rumor does turn out to be correct.
Peaky Blinders season 6 production
Covid initially halted filming back in March 2020, but in January 2021 it was confirmed that Peaky Blinders season 6 was re-starting production. Byrne noted that originally there was a 78-day shoot plan for the season, but it seems that schedule had to be scrapped.
As you might expect, Byrne promised fans that it would be worth waiting for, saying: “We believe this will be the best series of all and are sure that our amazing fans will love it.”
On May 28 (much more than 78 days after the January 2021 start), Peaky Blinders season 6 wrapped production. Show director Anthony Byrne posted confirmation on his Instagram, which you can see below.
Cillian Murphy told Jimmy Kimmel that he took home his own souvenir from the Peaky Blinders season 6 filming: "one of [Thomas Shelby’s] very nicely tailored coats. Because they’re made for me, and very beautiful, I took that as a memento."
The longer production window makes sense because filming production regulations have changed per the Covid-19 pandemic. The production announcement confirmed that "The Peaky Blinders production team have developed comprehensive production protocols to ensure that the series will be produced in a safe and responsible manner, and in accordance with government guidelines, during this time of global pandemic."
Peaky Blinders season 6 script changes
One upside to the pandemic — rare as they are — was that the crew got time to improve the scripts. Anthony Byrne told Digital Spy that "It's given us a chance to go back through the scripts again and really kind of nail it, in a way that… I mean these scripts were so, so good, and now having more time you go 'what about this or what about that'. And you go 'shit, that's a good idea.'"
This isn't the first time we've heard such notes from cast or crew. It was also said about the writing of Stranger Things season 4 scripts, as the Duffer Brothers weren't as taxed to get things done too quickly.
Peaky Blinders season 6 cast
So, where do we find ourselves come season 6 with the ever-changing and growing cast?
Peaky Blinders has always dished out surprises and hefty doses of razor-sharp violence. And that's just by order of the Peaky Blinders themselves. Every season has thrown out a boisterous bunch of new characters that we've grown to love or dislike, with their own nuances and story arcs.
It's important to note that Tommy has been tussling with the claws of psychosis throughout the show. By the end of season 5, things were heading towards a crescendo of sorts, as Tommy grappled with increasing angst, paranoia and trauma (both inflicted and received), as the Shelby clan has grown in strength. Nowhere is this more apparent than in the season 5 finale, where his inner demons have well and truly caught up with Tommy by now, leading him to hold a gun to his own head.
This isn’t the end for Tommy, though; the head of the Shelby crew must survive to see through series creator Steven Knight’s plot, which will move the story to 1939 and the beginning of World War Two.
Moving past Tommy, we can also expect Michael, Arthur, Finn, Gina and Oswald Mosely to return.
Sam Claflin (Oswald Mosely) will reprise his role as the slimy head of the Blackshirts, but unfortunately, we don't know anything more about Alfie Solomons (Tom Hardy), who has been a prickly thorn in Tommy's side for the best part of three seasons.
As for new cast members, it’s always felt like a sort of destiny for the series, but Stephen Graham has finally signed up to appear in season 6. This is wonderful news for anyone familiar with the Liverpudlian star (known for stints in Line of Duty and The Virtues). There’s no official word on who Graham is playing, but a picture has surfaced of him wearing a pinstripe period piece, alongside the usual bags of charisma Graham’s very presence alone brings to any stage. We can’t wait.
Australian star James Frecheville will appear in season six in an as-yet-unspecified role, announced by Peaky's Twitter account. Frecheville appeared in the 2010 version of Animal Kingdom, an explosive neo-noir crime film set in Australia which is a tough but fascinating watch.
Another new cast member we’re extremely hyped about is the rising Bafta star nominee Conrad Khan. If you caught him as Tyler in 2020’s bleak but captivating County Lines, then you’ll know what all the fuss is about.
Again, we’re not sure on his exact role, but you can expect Khan to be serving up one of the standout performances of the new series — even if it transpires to be a fleeting performance, as is common in the murderous world of Peaky Blinders.
Peaky Blinders has always offered its fair share of surprises when it comes to casting. Knight told NME: “I’m opening the door a bit. We always have people who want to be in it and we’re talking really astonishingly good people."
"The problem is that if you start populating the thing with people like that then it’s so distracting. But, now that we’re getting into a certain territory, I am going to open the door to a couple of really good actors."
“Our actors are all fantastic, but what I mean is ‘celebrated’ actors who will be showing up in six.”
Such comments can only lead us to think that Knight wants to wrap up the series in a scintillating style. Going out with a bang with an ensemble of stellar character actors is one way to do this.
One thing that series has always done well is to balance more nuanced performances with more overt, character-based actors. Peaky has had lots of fun with this dynamic in the past: Adrien Brody's portrayal of mob-boss Luca Changretta in the fourth season of Peaky Blinders, a blistering example of Brody having lots of fun with a Peaky character.
We're sure that viewers won't ever forget when Changretta and Tommy first met, where Brody's Italian mafioso launched into a tirade comparing his expensive tailoring to Tommy's suits, where "every stitch is stitched with blood." It's spine-chilling TV gold, and we'd love to see more of it in the new season.
Peaky Blinders season 6 plot
Unlike previous chapters, the fifth season ended on a killer cliffhanger. Amidst the intensifying political tensions of the show's pre-WW2 Britain, Tommy was left pointing a gun at his own head, now unable to outmaneuver his opponents where before his plans always found a solution when the end seemed nigh. The ability to outsmart any foe no matter how mighty has always been one of Tommy's greatest appeals — no matter how wrong his actions appear (and often are), you always find yourself willing him to succeed.
Sir Oswald Mosley’s foiled assassination is probably the biggest unanswered question left by the last series. It's further mystified by Michael and Gina, who together left Tommy with an ultimatum for the family business at the end of season 5 — are they, too, involved with the unsuccessful plot on Mosley? We're not so sure.
Gina, brilliantly played by The Queen's Gambit's Anya Taylor-Joy, has always exuded a duplicitous presence in her every appearance in the series. Is she double-dealing with other criminal factions? How far is the scheming couple willing to go to oust Tommy from the Shelby Company Ltd and take full control? Suspicions have been dialed up to extreme levels, and it really has become a case of trust no one with the culmination of season 5.
There's also the looming specter of the Blackshirts, with the first episode of Peaky Blinders season 6 being called called 'Black Day'. That title has been shared in a few places including the below Instagram post from Byrne:
As for what comes next? We're always a tad hesitant to speculate on the future of TV shows we love. It feels as though such comments could jinx things.
With that said, Knight has very clearly announced that the upcoming sixth series would be the last, but has also teased that "the story will continue in another form."
In comments to Deadline: "My plan from the beginning was to end Peaky with a movie."
A feature-length Peaky Blinders movie is an enthralling prospect, though there's very little info beyond the above at the moment. Knight, of course, had previously planned for a seven-season run of the drama. Maybe a feature-length Peaky outing is a happy medium between the pandemic-thwarted seventh season and one more story. We'll have to wait and see.
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