Ironically, Sir John Hurt died during the filming where he was set to portray Neville Chamberlain, Britain's ousted Prime Minister who was sick and dying of cancer. But, in an interview, Gary Oldman said that because of how sick Hurt was--also dying of cancer--he never made it to a reading and never got to film a scene. The movie will still be dedicated to Hurt, as it was his final cinematic project.
Director Joe Wright suggests that this film is directly relevant to the US's current political turmoil. He said, "There's a big question in America at the moment: what does good leadership look like. Churchill resisted when it mattered most, and as I travel around America I am really impressed and optimistic at the level of resistance happening in the US at the moment. After George W Bush was elected, it wasn't the same level; there was more apathy then. Now people are very vocal and that's really positive."