Aidan Gillen says Love/Hate fans are in for a treat with Season 5 of Peaky Blinders
Two great gangster shows.
There are certain things that Peaky Blinders fans just assume will happen with every new season.
Cigarettes, whiskey, caps, music, fights, sex, drugs and rock 'n roll.
They're all standard but with the Season 5 premiere quickly approaching, things are a little bit different - and similar - behind the lens.
That's because Dubliner Anthony Byrne is taking over the directorial reins from his fellow Love/Hate alumni David Caffrey, but Byrne is in an unusual position because he's already signed on to direct Season 6 too.
In doing so, he becomes the first director in the show's history to be at the helm of two separate seasons.
If ever there's a sign of confidence and an indication of quality, that's it.
When JOE had the chance to meet Aidan Gillen, he isn't surprised to learn this news. In fact, before a single scene was shot, Gillen was supremely confident in Byrne's talents having worked with him before.
"There’s quite a lot of quite big set pieces in this season of that similar scale. Probably more than last season. They’re not ridiculously so, but there’s definitely as much. I remember reading through the script and thinking ‘wow, this is going to be a challenge to get everything done.' But this director is really good. I’ve worked with him already and he did some of the great episodes of Love/Hate. He’s very detailed, specific, and sticks with his good ideas. He doesn't let people off with doing just an ok job," said Gillen.
As Peaky Blinders fans will know, Byrne's involvement in the show isn't the first time that the world's of both gangster dramas have met.
Gillen, Charlie Murphy, Tom Vaughan-Lawlor, and Brian Gleeson have all featured in both show's.
As for Gillen's character in Peaky Blinders, in terms of memorable introductions, it's hard for audiences to shake their first impressions of Aberama Gold.
Mysterious, driven by violence, and sporting one of the most striking haircuts in TV history, the hitman-for-hire instantly forged an uneasy alliance with Tommy Shelby as both men combined forces to remove the Changretta threat.
While their relationship became less antagonistic as the season developed, Gillen believes that there's still some tension between both characters but things are a bit smoother now that Aberama is dating Polly.
"It was Tommy that brought us him in in the first place and even though they were allies, there was always a bit of suspicion about what the other was up to, or wanted. It was an uneasy alliance but they’re both men of honour. Aberama definitely is. If he makes a deal, or says he’ll do something, he’ll probably do it. There’s still a tension.
"At this point, I’m pretty much a part of the family because the relationship with Polly is quite strong. That’s why I’m there. You do get to know him a good bit more than last season which felt more like an introduction than anything," he said.
After working on two of the most popular shows in TV history, Game of Thrones and The Wire, the Dubliner knows better than most what makes the great TV shows stand out.
For Gillen, the success of Peaky Blinders is mainly due to one reason, the singular voice of Steven Knight.
"I think it benefits from not having a big writing team and the scripts really only come from him (Steven Knight). It’s such a well-drawn world and it doesn't really lend itself to having many episodes written by others. I’m very confident when you see the script and his name is on it.
"Not just the size of the world and the number of characters, but the scale of the emotion. You always sense in Peaky that you know what people are thinking and feeling, even if they’re not saying it. You know everyone really well. Since joining the show, I've found that most people who are into it aren't really the cliched tough blokes down the pub. I've found a whole range of fans and they really do appreciate the strangeness of the show, the detail and the beauty of Steven's writing."
The first episode of Peaky Blinders Season 5 airs at 9pm on BBC1 on 25 August.