Peaky Blinders decries use of footage in political campaign for Ron DeSantis

Brianna Reeves
peaky blinders Ron DeSantis

Peaky Blinders has slammed Ron DeSantis’ campaign following the appearance of character Tommy Shelby in a recent political advertisement.

Divisive Presidential candidate Ron DeSantis is no stranger to using pop culture to prop up his image. About a year ago, the Florida Governor released a one-minute advertisement inspired by Top Gun: Maverick. The “Top Gov” cast himself as the Maverick-like figure – bomber jacket, shades, and all.

DeSantis’ latest attempt at appealing to a wider audience by invoking pop culture has received an incredibly negative response online.

On the final day of Pride Month, the DeSantis War Room Twitter account shared a video highlighting the “politician who did more than any other Republican to celebrate it…”

Peaky Blinders denounces DeSantis video featuring Tommy Shelby

The ad opened with several instances of Donald Trump promising to support the LGBTQ+ community, then underscored DeSantis’ efforts in signing anti-LGBTQ+ legislation. Shots from Peaky Blinders, The Wolf of Wall Street, and American Psycho were interspersed throughout.

And “the partners of Peaky Blinders” – namely Steven Knight, Cillian Murphy, Caryn Mandabach Productions, Tiger Aspect Productions, and Banijay Rights – have spoken out against the show’s inclusion.

A statement released on the show’s official Twitter page confirms that footage featured in the DeSantis ad was “obtained without permission or official license.” The message goes on to note that Peaky Blinders’ partners do not support the video’s message.

This is far from the first time that a Republican candidate has been lambasted for using an artist’s work. In the past, several musical artists – or their estates – objected to Trump rallies playing their music. Phil Collins and Bruce Springsteen count as but a couple of examples.

Pharrell once sent a cease and desist letter and Rihanna demanded her work stop being used in 2018. In 2019, the Prince estate condemned Purple Rain being featured in a Minneapolis rally.

DeSantis’ continued use of similar tactics suggests such instances won’t soon come to an end.

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