Birmingham & Black Country

Peaky Blinders creator in talks over ballet version

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Media captionWho were the real Peaky Blinders?

Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight has revealed plans for a ballet version of the hit Birmingham gangster TV show.

The Oscar-nominated screenwriter said the Rambert dance company had approached him with plans for a ballet based on the Shelby crime family.

Knight also told the Birmingham Press Club he is planning three more series of the drama and is lobbying the BBC to film more of the show in his home city.

The last series was the most popular instalment of the BBC Two drama yet.

Knight, who is currently writing season five, said: "We are definitely doing [series] six and we will probably do seven. After series four it went mad.

"We've talked to [lead actor] Cillian Murphy and he's all for it, and the rest of the principal cast are in for it."

He revealed talks over a dance version of the show, saying: "I had a meeting with Ballet Rambert who want to do Peaky Blinders - The Ballet. I'm saying 'why not?'"

Image caption Steven Knight attended the premier of the third series in Birmingham with the show's stars Cillian Murphy and Packy Lee in 2016

Knight said he was keen to use the show's success to promote Birmingham and wants more filming to take place in the city.

Previous episodes have been filmed elsewhere, with the Black Country Living Museum one of the only locations close to Birmingham.

"I'm trying to get series five shot here and trying to get as many Birmingham actors as I can in," he said.

"It's always bothered me that Birmingham didn't have that profile. It's a big city and it wasn't shouting about it.

"I'm sort of an evangelist for the city, so that was part of wanting to do it."

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He also hopes to create a massive film studio and production facility near the National Exhibition Centre.

"It's no secret that the plan is to build a six-sound stage studio in Birmingham, not because I want people to love Birmingham; it's a business," Knight explained.

He is in discussions with Birmingham City Council, the Royal Shakespeare Company, the BBC and West Midlands Mayor Andy Street and a formal announcement on the project is expected in the autumn of this year.

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