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Peaky Blinders cast and crew pay tribute to Helen McCrory in unique way on set

The Peaky Blinders cast and crew paid tribute to the late Helen McCrory on set today.

British actress Helen McCrory, who played Aunt Polly on the British period crime drama series, died at the age of just 52 on August 17, following a secret cancer battle.

And the cast and crew who worked with the actress honoured the talented star in a unique and special way by using a clapperboard decorated with a sketch of her face alongside the words “rest in peace Helen” as they filmed on Monday.

The touching tribute was revealed to fans via the BBC’s Instagram account with a snap of the whiteboard – used to mark scenes during filming – alongside a caption that read: “Helen McCrory, forever part of the Peaky Blinders family.⁣”

The photo was taken by Peaky Blinders director Anthony Byrne who also shared the upload on his Instagram page.

The Peaky Blinders cast and crew paid tribute to the late Helen McCrory on Monday

As he uploaded the offering – that showed the clapperboard in front of a backdrop of a clear blue sky and rolling hills – he penned: “Today was beautiful and strange and sad and surreal.

“We found ourselves in the most beautiful environment. The sun beating down on us and it felt ok. It was incredible but not surprising to read the many tributes and articles dedicated to Helen over the weekend.”

Explaining the photo and how the one of a kind clapperboard was made he continued: “This is our ‘A’ camera board and Polly Gray is always in front of our cameras.

Peaky Blinders
A unique one of a kind clapperboard decorated with the actress’ face was used on set

“This board was designed by @lo_marie_s a super talented tattoo artist in Manchester. It has meant a huge amount to me and the crew on Peaky to have an image of Helen on set with us everyday.

“Thanks to @francesca.caterina for marking up the clapper board like that. @peakyblindersofficial.”

On Friday, Helen’s husband Damian Lewis confirmed the Harry Potter actress’ death.

In a heartbreaking statement confirming her death, he 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.”

Peaky Blinders
Helen McCrory, who played Aunt Polly on the British period crime drama series, died at the age of just 52 on August 17

He added: “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.”

Helen had been married to fellow actor Damian since 2007 and shared two children with him – daughter Manon, 14, and 13-year-old son Gulliver.

Helen had an impressive career on stage and screen.

She’d originally been cast as Bellatrix Lestrange in the Harry Potter films, but had to pull out when she first fell pregnant. The role went to Helena Bonham Carter instead, but Helen was later cast as Bellatrix’s sister Narcissa Malfoy for the Deathly Hallows Part 1 and Part 2 films.

Damian Lewis and Helen McCrory
Helen’s husband Damian Lewis confirmed the actress’ death with a heartbreaking statement

She’d appeared in The Count Of Monte Cristo, 2005’s Casanova and The Woman In Black: Angel Of Death.

But it was her portrayal of Cherie Blair in 2006’s The Queen that catapulted her to household name status, after years of treading the boards with her theatre work.

She recently appeared in a string of TV shows in 2020, including Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? drama Quiz, political thriller Roadkill, and was the voice of Stelmaria in His Dark Materials.

Helen was awarded an OBE in the 2017 honours list for services to drama.

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