Movies - TV
Cillian Murphy Worried Typecasting Would Cost Him His Shot at Peaky Blinders
By SARAH MUSNICKY
Arguably considered one of his most iconic roles, Cillian Murphy has earned wide praise each season from critics and fans alike for his portrayal of Thomas "Tommy" Shelby in "Peaky Blinders." Yet, there was a moment in the casting process where he almost missed out on the role because creator Steven Knight had another, more overtly intimidating person in mind.
At the time of casting for Thomas Shelby, Steven Knight was looking at both Cillian Murphy and Jason Statham for the role, with Knight leaning more towards Statham because he had the physicality needed for the role. "There was slight hesitation," Murphy said, "because I'd never really played that physically imposing sort of hyper-masculine type character."
It was the text, "Remember, I'm an actor," from Murphy that was the jolt Knight needed to reconsider his casting decision. Murphy addressed the frustration of being a working actor in a system that habitually puts actors into safely categorized boxes by saying, "I've always tried to do the unexpected or play roles that are challenging so that you never get trapped in a career."