London Film Festival kicks off with Jay-Z, Idris Elba and Regina King on the red carpet

Western 'The Harder They Fall' was the opening night feature at the BFI London Film Festival

The BFI London Film Festival has started in the British capital, attracting a host of stars for the world premiere of The Harder They Fall on Wednesday night.

Stars of the Netflix Western, Idris Elba, Regina King and Jonathan Majors, walked the red carpet, along with director, Jeymes Samuel and rapper Jay-Z, who is a producer on the film.

The premiere took place at the Royal Festival Hall in London.

The film is based on the story of real-life figures from American history. Outlaw Nat Love (Majors) finds out that his enemy, Rufus Buck (Elba), is set to be released from prison and sets out to exact revenge, with the help of his gang.

Jay-Z has written and produced original music for the project.

Speaking of the importance of seeing black characters in Western films, Jay-Z said, “Just to see us represented, you know, with a lot of films we didn't see ourselves in Westerns, as if we didn’t exist.

“It is almost odd, people think that it's like a caricature, that they are playing roles, but they’re not playing roles.

“These names like Stagecoach Mary, all the actors in this, they really existed in this time, so just see us represented and see that we have voices.”

Elba echoed Jay-Z, telling the PA news agency: “It’s really interesting that these characters really existed one time. No one ever knows about them.

“Any Western fan would be like, 'Really? I never heard of Rufus Buck,' but he was a real guy so it's very special.”

The BFI London Film Festival runs until Sunday, October 17

Updated: October 7th 2021, 7:53 AM