Peaky Blinders season 6: BBC share first look at Tommy Shelby and tease release date for final series of gangster drama

As the gangster family epic returns for an explosive new season, we look ahead to what will become of the Shelbys and who will be in the season 6 cast.

By Katie Archer Published: 23 November 2021 - 12.56pm
BBC Cillian Murphy will return for Peaky Blinders season 6 on BBC One

It’s been one of BBC’s biggest drama hits, enthralling fans from across the world in the violent, messy lives of the Shelby clan.

Now, Peaky Blinders has reached its conclusion with the final series almost ready to go after coronavirus filming delays.

Here’s all you need to know about where the story is headed, who will join Cillian Murphy in the cast, and what the future holds for the Peaky Blinders.

When is Peaky Blinders series 6 on TV?

It's been confirmed that Peaky Blinders season 6 will air on BBC One in early 2022. The series has been delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Last time we met the Peaky Blinders was at the end of series five, which aired on BBC One in September 2019.

Filming had to be put off in 2020 because of restrictions, but it was confirmed that the new series had begun shooting in January 2021.

Is there a trailer?

A teaser trailer was released on the official Peaky Blinders Twitter account in November 2021, giving fans a glimpse of Tommy Shelby in the final series:

What happens in the final series?

If there’s one thing we can be sure of with Peaky Blinders, it’s that the last series will go out with a bang.

This will be the final full series of the show, but expect it to be as relentlessly gritty as ever.

Show creator Steven Knight said: “Peaky is back and with a bang. After the enforced production delay due to the Covid pandemic, we find the family in extreme jeopardy and the stakes have never been higher. We believe this will be the best series of all and are sure that our amazing fans will love it.”

Cillian Murphy will return as Tommy Shelby in Peaky Blinders season 6 BBC

We know that the opening episode will pick up where series five left us, with Tommy Shelby holding a gun to his own head.

Director Anthony Byrne told Digital Spy: “It picks up directly. So, the very first image you will see will be back in that field, with Tommy with a gun to his head. Then, we will move on from there, we resolve that amazing moment.”

For the second series running, fascist leader Oswald Mosley will also feature, although it remains to be seen whether Tommy will still be trying to tackle the party from the inside or will come out as hostile to Mosley.

Sam Claflin, who plays Oswald Mosley, will return for Peaky Blinders season 6 BBC

A recent promo shot from this year’s filming showed Tommy in Berlin, in a red-lit warehouse-style space.

Mosley was a known friend of Hitler and even had his second wedding, to Diana Mitford, at Joseph Goebbels’ home with Hitler as guest of honour, so it’s possible that Tommy could follow him to Germany this series.

Byrne has revealed that there will be a “pretty dark” new female character unlike anything Peaky Blinders has seen before, and added that she has “an ideology that’s like a virus and it’s more dangerous than anything”.

Things could also get ugly among the Shelbys as we wait to see whether Finn will own up to leaking details of the Mosley assassination plan.

Meanwhile, it looks like Tommy’s first wife Grace (Annabelle Wallis) could make yet another return – she was killed off in series three, but that hasn’t stopped her reappearing in visions to Tommy. Wallis recently tweeted that her character “has some unfinished business”.

So far, much of the plot is being kept under wraps which is great news for fans, who’ll be looking forward to some final twists and turns.

Where to watch Peaky Blinders seasons 1-5

Fans or newcomers to the series can catch up on Peaky Blinders seasons 1-5 on BBC iPlayer and Netflix.

How did Peaky Blinders season 5 end? Is Tommy Shelby alive?

Season 5 ended with a dramatic cliffhanger as the pressures of gangster life and his PTSD from the war combined to drive Tommy Shelby (Cillian Murphy) to the edge.

In a scene which was foreshadowed by Alfie Solomons’ (Tom Hardy) recurring dreams, the last moments of season 5 was Tommy stumbling through a misty field.

Viewers saw Tommy facing down a horse and his late wife Grace Shelby (Annabelle Wallis), who had been haunting him in visions throughout the season.

Grace was encouraging Tommy to bid farewell to the world and we see him screaming and holding a gun, but we never see or hear the trigger go off.

We know Cillian Murphy has been filming season 6, so it’s unlikely he pulled the trigger but the gang leader is clearly struggling to maintain control of his power and personal health.

Many fans expect season 6 to follow his own personal downfall as well as a fall of grace for the Peaky Blinders dynasty.

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Who is in the Peaky Blinders season 6 cast?

Of course, main character Tommy Shelby, who is played by Cillian Murphy, will be back leading the series and has appeared in a number of promo and behind-the-scenes shots already.

Also joining him for their final run will be key members of the Shelby clan including Arthur Shelby (Paul Anderson), Finn Shelby (Harry Kirton) and Ada Thorne (Sophie Rundle).

The big new arrival for Peaky Blinders season 6 is Stephen Graham (This is England, Time, Line of Duty), who has been filming a secret guest role.

Graham, a fan of the series, told Radio X that getting to be part of the show and filming scenes with Cillian Murphy was a "joy".

He added: "Cillian’s such a wonderful actor, he’s amazing and what a lovely, lovely, lovely fella."

Peaky Blinders fans were devastated by the recent news of Helen McCrory's death, who will be sadly missed as Aunt Polly. It isn't clear whether she had already recorded any scenes for the final series.

Series 5 saw the introduction of fascist leader Oswald Mosley, played by Sam Claflin, and we know that he will also be a key part of the series 6 storyline.

Amber Anderson joins the Peaky Blinders cast for season 6 BBC

Also look out for possible returns from big names including The Queen’s Gambit star Anya Taylor-Joy as Gina Gray, and Hollywood actor Tom Hardy who we could see reprise his role as Alfie Solomons.

Annabelle Wallis has hinted that she may be back in ghost form as Tommy’s first wife Grace who was murdered a few series back, and there’s also a good chance his second wife Lizzie (Natasha O’Keeffe) could be back on screen.

New additions to the cast also include Bafta Rising Star nominee Conrad Khan, Australian actor James Frecheville, and Black Mirror’s Amber Anderson.

James Frecheville joins the Peaky Blinders season 6 cast BBC

None of their characters have been revealed yet, but it’s possible that Anderson could be playing the dangerous mystery woman Byrne mentioned.

Is this the last ever Peaky Blinders season?

Peaky Blinders Cillian Murphy BBC

Knight has confirmed that the forthcoming series of Peaky Blinders will definitely be the last, but fear not – just because the TV series will be over, it doesn’t mean you’ll never see the Shelbys again.

“While the TV series will be coming to an end, the story will continue in another form," he said.

It has been confirmed that Peaky Blinders will be heading to the big screen for a film, so there should be one or two more big developments to come for the Shelbys even after the final episode of series 6.

In the meantime, those missing Knight’s writing can look out for his new series, SAS: Rogue Heroes, based on the Ben Macintyre book about the formation of the Special Forces unit which will air on BBC.

Peaky Blinders season 6 is coming to BBC One in early 2022.

Season 1-5 are available now on BBC iPlayer and Netflix.