Peaky Blinders: Did Steven Knight always plan to bring Alfie Solomons back? Star tells all

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Peaky Blinders fans were delighted when Tom Hardy’s gruff Camden gangster made a surprise reappearance in the season finale of series five. Now Steven Knight has revealed why he brought Alfie Solomons back in a new interview with Esquire Magazine.

Did Steven Knight always plan to bring Alfie Solomons back?

Alfie Solomons (played by Tom Hardy) has been a fan-favourite ever since he first appeared back in season two.

As a result, fans were left devastated when Tommy Shelby (Cillian Murphy) seemingly shot him dead in the finale of season four.

Viewers will remember how this came after Alfie had betrayed the leader of the Peaky Blinders to the Italians.

However, in the season five finale it was actually revealed Alfie was alive and well and living in Margate.

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Fans might have been left wondering as a result whether it was always on the cards to keep Alfie alive in the show.

Knight revealed more about the scene in a recent watch-along of the season five finale with Esquire at the end of May.

During the Q&A he was asked by a fan about what the conversation about bringing Tom Hardy back was like.

He replied: “It wasn’t really a conversation, it was just ‘Alfie can’t die’ basically.

“I was talking before about it’s difficult when you’ve got a character you really like and is really popular writing them out.

“It was a consideration as you can imagine but in conversations and texts back and forth we agreed that Alfie can’t die and we couldn’t do it without him.

“And I’m so glad because he really adds something to it. I know that a lot of people love that character and that look and what he brings to the show.

“So I’m glad we had that text and phone conversation times a few!”

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Therefore, it seems Hardy’s return to the drama was always planned despite Knight telling fans the character was dead in interviews ahead of season five.

This interview also gives some more context to what was known about Alfie’s exit previously.

Back in August 2019, director David Caffrey spoke to the podcast Obsessed With Peaky Blinders about Hardy’s exit.

He said: “That was the thing with the script – that wasn’t in the script.

“I think we started shooting. We had a tiny little window with Tom about.

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“We did the stuff at the beer barrels in Liverpool and then we were about to go to the beach.

“But that [shooting between Alfie and Tommy] hadn’t been written. Steve had just come up with that two days beforehand.

“We hadn’t recced it, hadn’t looked at it and so I literally went through a 24 – 36 hour period of we need to organise the tides correct.”

Fans will be hopeful to see Alfie back in the upcoming sixth season of the show, and given Knight’s promise the character can’t die, his return seems hopeful.

Peaky Blinders seasons 1-5 are available to stream on Netflix now.

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