NTAs: Cillian Murphy 'dedicates' award to Peaky Blinders fans
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Peaky Blinders actor Cillian Murphy, 45, has spoken about filming the popular TV series without Helen McCrory, who played Polly Gray in the BBC show. In April Damian Lewis announced that his wife had died at the age of 52, following a “heroic” battle with cancer.
And we’re all still dealing with it like everybody else, and we really miss her
Addressing filming the sixth season of the show, the Irish actor said that the experience had been “desperately sad” without his late co-star in the picture.
Cillian, who plays main character Tommy Shelby, said that out of the whole cast and crew, he was closest with Helen.
He said: “She was like the matriarch of Peaky Blinders, and I think my closest colleague on the show.”
The star went on to say that the Harry Potter actress was one of the most talented performers he had worked with.
“She was without doubt one of the best actors I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with,” he said.
Cillan continued: “But on top of that just an extraordinary human being. So it’s really really sad.
“And we’re all still dealing with it like everybody else, and we really miss her,” he said to Today FM.
The actor added that the scenes he shot with his on-screen aunt were his “favourite”.
Two months ago tributes came flooding in from stars after Damian announced the death of his wife on social media.
The Homeland actor wrote: “I’m heartbroken to announce that after a heroic battle with cancer, the beautiful and mighty woman that is Helen McCrory has died peacefully at home, surrounded by a wave of love from friends and family.
“She died as she lived. Fearlessly. God we love her and know how lucky we are to have had her in our lives.
“She blazed so brightly. Go now, Little One, into the air, and thank you,” Damian ended the post.
Paying tribute to his co-star, Cillian said it had been a “privilege” to have worked alongside such a “brilliant” actor.
In a statement, he said: “I am broken-hearted to lose such a dear friend.
“Helen was a beautiful, caring, funny, compassionate human being.”
The star went on to praise her as a gifted actor, admitting he will “dearly miss her”.
He added to the PA news agency: “She was also a gifted actor – fearless and magnificent. She elevated and made humane every scene, every character she played.
“It was a privilege to have worked with this brilliant woman, to have shared so many laughs over the years,” the actor continued.
He finished: “I will dearly miss my pal. My love and thoughts are with Damian and her family.”
Peaky Blinders finished filming its final series in Cheshire in May and Cillian previously revealed to Men’s Health magazine that the season would be dedicated to the late actress.
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