Gaite Jansen became well-known to Peaky Blinders fans when she played the role of Grand Duchess Tatiana Petrovna, a Russian aristocrat who becomes romantically involved with Cillian Murphy’s character Tommy Shelby. Recently, Jansen also had the chance to work on an independent film titled The Good Liar, in which she played the lead character of Helen, an art dealer trying to help an ex-convict (played by Ian McKellen) out of debt and into redemption. Peaky Blinders Star Gaite Jansen on Playing Grand Duchess Tatiana Petrovna
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An introduction to the character
One of Peaky Blinders’ most curious characters, Grand Duchess Tatiana Petrovna, is a divot in season 4. Played by Dutch actress Gaite Jansen, it’s clear that her character isn’t there for comic relief or to be a pawn for Tommy Shelby (Cillian Murphy) to push around—she’s in season 4 for a reason. And from what we’ve seen so far, she seems like a woman not to be messed with. She’s incredibly manipulative and brilliant, says Jansen when discussing her character’s mindset.
The inspiration behind the character
I was definitely inspired by people I knew who grew up with a lot of money and freedom, but who felt they had everything handed to them and didn’t have to work for it. She’s very entitled and bratty—she feels she can do what she wants because her family has money.
And then all of a sudden, you see how fragile that bubble is and how easily it bursts—in my mind it’s at least partly because of conflict between Tatiana and [her mother] Sofiya over Dmitry. It’s almost like they both want him, even though he doesn’t want either of them.
How was your audition process? Did you have to tape auditions and send them off, or did they just give you a script and let you go? It was kind of both! They had already done their open casting, but I did have to submit an audition, which is what I’m used to. The first time around we sent in tapes, but there were Skype calls as well. There was also a face-to-face meeting, which happened after my second Skype call with Steve [Knight].
What it was like filming in Russia, Lithuania and Latvia
When I first received my script, and after I did a little research, I was excited to find out that we were going to be shooting in Russia. My husband, who is Russian by birth, has only ever visited Moscow and St. Petersburg a few times so it would be a great opportunity for us to see Russia together. We were also lucky enough to be able to travel around Lithuania and Latvia while we were there – both beautiful countries with unique people. There are so many similarities between these two nations that were once part of USSR yet they have very different histories too; they each suffered greatly during WW2. The Baltic States are often overlooked as holiday destinations but it’s definitely worth exploring beyond their modern day charms as you really do get a sense of history wherever you go!
About her role as a Grand Duchess Tatiana Petrovna in Peaky Blinders Season 5
It was a fantastic experience to work on Peaky Blinders. It was a huge production, and something I’ve never experienced before in my life! What I liked most about playing Tatiana is that she isn’t one of those stereotypical princesses. She’s quite clumsy and very sarcastic. I loved creating her. The show has such an amazing cast, crew and director. Everyone involved was so talented, which made it easy for me to do my job. I would love to come back for another season if they ask me! But as of now, we are waiting for season 6…
About her other movies and TV shows
In 2015, she appeared in series 9 of Game of Thrones (2015) as Lady Lyanna Mormont, a young woman from Bear Island and head of House Mormont who succeeds her father as Lord Commander of Bear Island. In July 2016, it was announced that Jansen would play Cressida in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013). In 2016, she portrayed Martha Gellhorn in Hemingway & Gellhorn (2012), starring opposite Clive Owen and Nicole Kidman; for her performance she received a SAG Award nomination for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Motion Picture.
Why does Tommy sleep with Tatiana?
Speaking to Digital Spy, actress Gaite Jansen – who plays Grand Duchess Tatiana in series four of Peaky Blinders – has revealed why her character had a relationship with Tommy Shelby. I don’t think it’s love, she said. It’s just that she knows a good thing when she sees it. This is someone who will take care of her and make sure that she is okay and I think they connect over a sort of damaged-ness.
Is Tatiana from Peaky Blinders real?
Peaky Blinders, one of our favourite TV shows, is a crime drama set in Birmingham after World War I. It’s a series with three seasons that premiered in September 2013 and was created by Steven Knight, who’s also responsible for Dirty Pretty Things (2002) and Locke (2013). You might be wondering if Tatiana Petrovna from Peaky Blinders was based on an actual person. The answer is yes – but it has to do with more than just being inspired by some historical figure you’ve heard about before; it’s even been mentioned in an interview that his character’s backstory came from a dream he had! And as far as we know, Steven Knight didn’t have dreams about grand duchesses or even Russian royalty … so why would Tatiana appear?
Who plays Tatiana Petrovna?
British actress and singer, Gaite Jansen has been cast as Tatiana Petrovna in Peaky Blinders season 4. The role is a recurring one, with a possibility of turning into a series regular if things go well for both sides. In season 4, she is hired by Tommy Shelby (Cillian Murphy) to be his love interest and wife after his engagement to Grace Burgess (Annabelle Wallis) ends when she finds out about him being married already. So who plays her in Peaky Blinders? We found out! Meet actress and singer Gaite Jansen! She will star as Grand Duchess Tatiana Petrovna alongside Cillian Murphy’s Tommy Shelby, in BBC Two’s Peaky Blinders season 4.