Cillian Murphy denounces Ron DeSantis’ anti-LGBTQ+ campaign video featuring Peaky Blinders footage

After footage of Murphy's Peaky Blinders character was featured in a campaign video for DeSantis, the show released a statement strongly disapproving of its use.

Cillian Murphy as Tommy Shelby in Peaky Blinders.
Image: Wikimedia Commons

Peaky Blinders stakeholders, including Irish actor Cillian Murphy, have denounced an anti-LGBTQ+ campaign video posted on behalf of US presidential hopeful and current Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. The hit show published a statement on Wednesday, July 5, after imagery of Murphy’s character, Tommy Shelby, was used to help promote DeSantis’ message.

The video in question was shared on June 30, seemingly calling out Republican rival Donald Trump’s previous pro-LGBTQ+ comments. It features quotes from the disgraced former US President, including: “I will do everything in my power to protect our LGBTQ citizens”, and shows examples of Trump expressing support for trans women.

The second half of the video contrastingly boasts about DeSantis’ crackdown on queer rights, intercut with scenes of men from famous films and TV shows, such as Tommy Shelby in Peaky Blinders. Other characters featured include Brad Pitt’s Achilles in Troy, Leonardo DiCaprio’s Jordan Belfort in The Wolf of Wall Street and Christian Bale’s Patrick Bateman in American Psycho.

“On behalf of the partners of Peaky Blinders – Steven Knight, Cillian Murphy, Caryn Mandabach Productions, Tiger Aspect Productions and Banijay Rights – we confirm the footage of Tommy Shelby’s character used within the video posted by Ron DeSantis’ campaign was obtained without permission or official licence,” the show wrote.

“We do not support nor endorse the video’s narrative and strongly disapprove of the use of the content in this manner,” it concluded.


The campaign video has faced widespread criticism, with Democrat Pete Buttigieg telling CNN, “I’m going to leave aside the strangeness of trying to prove your manhood by putting up a video that splices images of you in between oiled-up shirtless bodybuilders and just get to the bigger issue that is on my mind whenever I see this stuff in the policy space.

“Which is, again, who are you trying to help? Who are you trying to make better off? And what public policy problems do you get up in the morning thinking about how to solve?” Buttigieg added.

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