Film4 Summer Screen at Somerset House

8 – 21 August 2019


For a strictly limited season in August, the ultimate open-air cinema experience Film4 Summer Screen at Somerset House returns, bringing film fans and film-making talent together inside a real-life movie set.

One of the very first outdoor cinemas in the UK, Film4 Summer Screen celebrates its 200th screening this year.  The 2019 line-up brings the best of cinema back to the big screen, featuring ground-breaking films of our times, made to be watched communally.  The programme includes the cultural phenomenon Black Panther, the mighty Marvel superhero epic starring Chadwick Boseman, Michael B. Jordan and 2018 BAFTA Rising Star winner Letitia Wright; the classic 90s coming-of-age comedy Clueless; director Francis Lee’s love story God’s Own Country, a grittily tender drama of newfound intimacy between a young Yorkshire farmer and a Romanian migrant worker, and This is England, Shane Meadows’ unflinching film about a young boy becoming involved with a group of skinheads in 1980s Midlands, which has spawned the successful TV dramas of the same name.

A highlight of the capital’s summer calendar, film lovers flock to the beautiful London landmark over the festival fortnight, immersing themselves in memorable cinematic moments, both on and off screen.  Settled under the starry night sky on balmy summer evenings, Film4 Summer Screen audiences come together to share in the laughs, suspense and emotion of some much-loved movies, and have the rare chance to hear from some of the world’s favourite stars of film.  New for 2019, the public can now select from a range of seating options in Somerset House’s courtyard, including Bean Bags and Director’s Chairs, to best suit their group. 

Further details can be found below, showcasing why Film4 Summer Screen continues to be distinguished as the premier open-air cinema experience:


The programme is hand-picked by Film4 and Somerset House, by a team with years of film industry and live event experience.  This means the festival has fantastic access to film-making talent, offering the chance to get closer to those that create cinema and see the latest, long-awaited releases before anyone else at its much-prized Premiere screenings

Film4 Summer Screen has routinely premiered films that have gone on to become awards contenders and box-office hits, often shown weeks before they go on release anywhere else.  The red carpet is rolled out at Premieres and at screenings throughout the festival, when casts and creative teams make special guest appearances live at Somerset House.  In 2018, Hollywood legend Glenn Close presented her critically-acclaimed performance in The Wife, Michael Caine revealed the secrets behind the enigmatic ending of Inception and Ava DuVernay sent an inspiring introduction to Selma.

Film4 Summer Screen’s sidebar event Behind the Screen also returns in 2019, offering an even more intimate opportunity to hear personal stories from esteemed film makers.   Last year’s Behind the Screen programme included conversations with actor Jodie Whittaker, producer Elizabeth Karlsen and director Francis Lee, the creator of this year’s main screen pick God’s Own Country.  More exciting names are expected this year.


Film4 Summer Screen audiences uniquely sit inside a real-life movie set. Somerset House’s courtyard has become a firm favourite with film location scouts for its stunning architecture at every turn; scenes have been shot here from Mary Poppins Returns, X-Men First Class and Goldeneye.  On selected evenings before the screening, audiences can discover these locations and behind-the-scenes stories on a special guided tour.

New for 2019, the public can now select from a range of seating options, with something suited to everyone.  They can choose to lounge in a luxurious Bean Bag, sit in comfort in a Director’s Chair or centre their experience around their picnic on a blanket.  There is also a dedicated section, located centrally at the rear of the courtyard, for wheelchair users and their family and friends.  With London’s largest outdoor screen and state-of-the-art surround sound, every position provides a prime viewing experience.

Like any great film, the festival entices from the very start, setting the scene for the evening to come.  Each night, the Film4 Summer Screen team invites a live DJ to mix and perform a set inspired by the upcoming screening, as the sun sets over the London skyline.  Film4 Summer Screen audiences are also welcome to bring along drinks and snacks for screenings, though to make it an extra special experience, they can sample something tasty from one of the street food stalls or pre-order a handcrafted picnic hamper.


Film4 Summer Screen is put together by people who passionately care about the unique power of cinema.  All films are meticulously selected to create the most impactful cinematic experience in Somerset House’s courtyard.  The festival celebrates a broad range of cinematic genres and styles, with cult, classic and contemporary films, as well as hotly-anticipated premieres and fun double-feature nights, during the season.  Without compromise, Film4 Summer Screen creates a superior cinema experience, by combining the glorious setting of Somerset House – an open-air sanctuary in the heart of the capital – with the audio-visual standard of the multiplex.  Film4 Summer Screen boasts London’s largest outdoor screen and the best technicians in the business are brought to Somerset House to project DCPs and strategically install full Dolby 7.1 surround sound.  Where available, screenings are also audio-described (headsets must be pre-ordered).



Dates: 8 - 21 August 2019

Address: Somerset House, Strand, London, WC2R 1LA

Tickets: Tickets will be available via in May 2019, when the full line-up will be announced.


Address:  Somerset House, Strand, London, WC2R 1LA

Transport:  Underground: Temple, Embankment / Rail:  Charing Cross, Waterloo, Blackfriars


Somerset House Facebook:

Somerset House Twitter: @SomersetHouse

Somerset House Instagram: @SomersetHouse

Hashtag: #Film4SummerScreen


Inspiring contemporary culture

One of the city’s most spectacular and well-loved spaces, Somerset House is a new kind of arts centre in the heart of London, designed for today’s audiences, artists and creatives – an inspirational community where contemporary culture is imagined, created and experienced.

From its 18th Century origins, Somerset House has played a central role in our society as a place where our culture and collective understanding of the world is shaped and defined. In 2000, it began its reinvention as a cultural powerhouse and home for arts and culture today, creating unique and stimulating experiences for the public, bringing them into direct contact with ideas from the greatest artists, makers and thinkers of our time. Our distinctive and dynamic year-round programme spans the contemporary arts in all its forms, from cutting-edge exhibitions and installations to annual festivals, seasonal events in the courtyard including Film4 Summer Screen, Summer Series and Skate, and an extensive learning and engagement programme.

As well as welcoming over 3million visitors annually, Somerset House houses the largest and most diverse creative communities in the country – from one-person start-ups to successful creative enterprises including British Fashion Council, Dance Umbrella, Improbable Theatre, Hofesh Shechter Company, and Dartmouth Films.  In 2016 we launched Somerset House Studios – a new experimental workspace connecting artists, makers and thinkers with audiences. Currently housing over 80 artists and Makerversity (a community of over 250 emergent makers), the Studios are a platform for the development of new creative projects and collaboration, promoting work that pushes bold ideas, engages with urgent issues and pioneers new technologies.


Film4 is available for free to everyone with digital TV. A daily line-up of great movies guarantees a choice for every type of film fan, including the best of British film-making, US independent films, Hollywood blockbusters, mainstream drama and comedy.

Film4 is Channel 4 Television’s feature film division, which develops and co-finances films and has an established track record for working with the most distinctive and innovative talent in UK and international filmmaking.  Film4 has developed and/or co-financed many of the most successful UK films of recent years - Academy Award-winners such as Yorgos Lanthimos’s The Favourite, Martin McDonagh’s Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, Lenny Abrahamson’s Room, Alex Garland’s Ex Machina, Asif Kapadia’s Amy, Steve McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave, Danny Boyle’s Slumdog Millionaire and Phyllida Lloyd’s The Iron Lady, in addition to critically-acclaimed award-winners such as Pawel Pawlikowski’s Cold War, Lynne Ramsay’s You Were Never Really Here, Rungano Nyoni’s I Am Not a Witch, Andrea Arnold’s American Honey, Todd Haynes’ Carol, Mike Leigh’s Mr. Turner, Shane Meadows’ This is England and Jonathan Glazer’s Under the Skin. Forthcoming releases include Chris Morris’s The Day Shall Come, Armando Iannucci’s The Personal History of David Copperfield, Michael Winterbottom’s Greed, Sarah Gavron’s ‘Untitled Girls Film’ and Coky Giedroyc’s adaptation of Caitlin Moran’s How To Build a Girl. | @Film4