Tom Hardy is being linked with a drama charting the origins of the SAS, as the British actor is believed to be set for a reunion with the “Peaky Blinders” creator Steven Knight. According to the Daily Mail UK, the new Television project will provide an insight into how the celebrated elite special forces unit came into being, with Hardy’s previously well-chronicled interest in the Military and a string of strong character roles marking him as a prime candidate for a leading role.

Inspired by the bestselling book by Ben Macintyre, “SAS: Rogue Heroes”, Knight told The Times that the series would be “telling the story of exceptional soldiers.” He added that they will be looking to “shine a light on remarkable true events.”

Highly specialised and classified operations

Formed in 1941, originally as a regiment but later in 1950 being reconstituted as a corps, the Special Air Service (SAS) is a special forces unit within the British Army.

Due to the highly sensitive nature of its operations – including counter-terrorism and covert reconnaissance - much of their work remains highly classified. As a result, any insight into their way of working and operational methods tends to attract great interest.

Military interest signposted

Hardy’s military interest has been previously signposted by a copy of the biography of Robert Blair “Paddy” Mayne – the hard-drinking and violent co-founder of the SAS – being spotted by keen observers in his car dashboard. Mayne was something of a hell-raiser of his time, excelling both in his military career but also on the rugby field, where he was capped for Ireland and the British Lions.

The acting career of Hardy has similarly been action-packed and has seen him portray a series of challenging roles both on television and on film, including the notorious Bill Sikes in the BBC’s miniseries “Oliver Twist” and the extremely dark lead character in “Taboo”, a series he co-wrote with his father Chips Hardy.

“Taboo” provided another link with Knight as well, as he helped to bring the gritty period drama to the screen.

Origins of 'Peaky Blinders'

Peaky Blinders” proved to be a major success for Knight and featured the (now) 41-year-old Hardy for three series as Alfie Solomons. The epic series – running since 2013 – re-used the name of a Birmingham- based urban street gang that developed in the late 19th century and was in existence up until the beginning of the First World War.

Comprised mainly of young, unemployed men, the often- violent gang members developed a signature way of dressing that included flat caps incorporating razor blades stitched into the peak, which could then be used as a weapon of choice as the need arose.