Peaky Blinders star Paul Anderson says he is ‘struggling’ after health concerns

Paul Anderson has said he is “struggling” months after a photo of him left many Peaky Blinders fans concerned for his health.

The image, which showed the British star with a somewhat changed appearance, was shared online weeks after he pleaded guilty to crack cocaine possession, throwing his future in the BBC show’s now-confirmed Netflix spin-off film into question.

Shortly afterwards, Anderson, 46, reassured his fans he was OK, but on Thursday (13 June), the actor opened up about the struggles he is currently experiencing, telling them: “There is no story without struggle. Take it from me: I have struggled and I struggle today, the same way you do.”

In a motivational post shared on his Instagram Stories, Anderson, who played Arthur Shelby opposite Cillian Murphy in Peaky Blinders, said: “Just like you, search inside. Find it for yourself, overcome the struggles, the tribulations, the pain that you are feeling. And we deal with it.”

The actor stated: “If I can help you deal with your struggles, then let’s do this together. Let’s make this the first of many conversations as you can’t do it on your own. You need help.”

He added: “I will say this one more thing to you: you can help others and in turn it will help you. It is called service. So turn around, my friend – look for somebody else who is also suffering and, as hard as you may find it, help them. As you will find it helps you more, believe it or not.

“Remember this – we are amazing, you are unbelievable.”

Paul Anderson shared motivational message to fans on Instagram (Instagram)
Paul Anderson shared motivational message to fans on Instagram (Instagram)

After initial concern for his health, Anderson had told his followers: “Always remember nobody cares about the truth when the lie is way more entertaining than the truth. I am back don’t you worry about that.”

The post came shortly after Anderson was fined £1,345 for possession of drugs when he was found with a selection of substances in a Hampstead pub on Boxing Day 2023.

According to Mail Online, police were called after a pub manager discovered what he believed were crack cocaine fumes coming from the disabled toilet after Anderson had been in there.

The British actor, whose other credits include The Revenant and the Kevin Hart film Lift, was reportedly taken to a police station where crack cocaine, amphetamines, diazepam and pregabalin were found.

Anderson pleaded guilty to possessing class A crack cocaine, class B amphetamines and two class C prescription substances.

Paul Anderson as Arthur Shelby in ‘Peaky Blinders’ (BBC)
Paul Anderson as Arthur Shelby in ‘Peaky Blinders’ (BBC)

But the actor’s lawyer is believed to have told the court that Anderson had not been smoking crack cocaine, and reportedly said: “You will recognise the defendant from a very intense part that he has played in a recent television programme. He is often recognised and does his best to please fans of the show by slipping into character.

“He was recognised that Boxing Day and tried to play up for these people – and because of the lifestyle he leads, people often give him inducements.”