If you’ve been waiting to see an extra gritty and violent star-studded Prohibition-era drama, Wednesday (August 29) is your lucky day because “Lawless” has finally arrived in theaters. Based on Matt Bondurant’s 2008 book “The Wettest County in the World,” the film tells the story of three Moonshine bootleggers during the Prohibition in rural Virginia and stars Tom Hardy, Shia LaBeouf, Jessica Chastain and Gary Oldman.
Despite the seriousness associated with the down-and-dirty subject matter in the John Hillcoat-directed and Nick Cave-scripted film, the actors seemed to have plenty of fun on and off set during their time on the Atlanta-based production. Friendly games of Scrabble between Hardy and Chastain, bonding over a rescued dog, etc., left their fellow co-star LaBeouf feeling slightly excluded.
“It was not difficult to work with [Hardy] at all,” Chastain said of her scenes with the “Dark Knight Rises” actor. “There was a lot of competition with Scrabble. Most of the behind-the-scenes was games of Scrabble, sometimes we’d have two games going at once.”
“They also found a stray dog,” added LeBeouf. “You guys had a lot of sweetheart stuff going on. It wasn’t just Scrabble, there was a lot of…”
“He totally felt left out,” Chastain jumped in. “Because one time, you know what he said to me, he said, ‘You always choose Tom’s side, Jessica, you never choose my side.’ ”
“Okay, now let me explain,” said LeBeouf, turning to speak directly into the camera. “Now I’m in the hot seat, Jess. Camera, just you and me, Jess was the mediator. She was the referee a lot of the time.”
“I was like the mother hen,” said Chastain.
“Yeah, and so when she’s the mother hen and always reffing on the err of Tom’s argument, then you’re always wrong. And so this is just one of the things you deal with, and there was also this superiority with age and all that stuff,” he explained, with minor-but-playful hints of genuine irritation in his voice. “They adopted a dog together. They found a dog on the freeway; that was the set mascot. We all saw it and thought, ‘This is sweet. Way too sweet.’”