The occasion? The UK premiere of the film Lawless, the true story of the Moonshine-peddling Bondurant brothers brazenly operating in Prohibition-era Virginia.
Before the film, fans watched a specially filmed introduction from co-star Shia LaBeouf, who was pictured with co-star Dane DeHaan, writer Nick Cave and a rather sizable new beard.
LaBeouf is clean-shaven throughout Lawless for his stand-out turn as the youngest brother Jack, a nervy but ambitious young criminal who’s also set his sights on the local preacher’s daughter (Mia Wasikoswka). Their tender courting scenes add a sensitive edge to a story that’s peppered with violence: Pearce’s ruthless Chicago lawman and his men will do anything to stop the brothers and their business.
Ruling the roost is Forrest, played in typically gruff style by Hardy, noticeably Batman-buff under his grey woollen layers. Meanwhile, Chastain plays the dancer who’s blown in from the Windy City with an astonishing collection of fitted velvet dresses (if we could fit all that in one suitcase, we’d be very happy).
As audiences weathered the weather to watch Cave’s gripping drama play out in the stunning Somerset House courtyard, it was a fitting end to a season of fun film choices for Film4 Summer screen. Opening with the UK premiere of On The Road starring Kristen Stewart, the programme went on to include films as diverse as Paris, Texas and Pretty In Pink – all packed to the rafters. From Garrett Hedlund to James Spader to Tom Hardy – now that’s our kind of film season.