A SILENT film festival is set to return to a Scottish town next month.

The 2022 Hippodrome Silent Film Festival will run from March 16-20 at the Bo’ness Cinema in West Lothian.

The programme for the event, known as HippFest, includes films and presentations rescheduled from 2020’s line up, as well as new commissions for 2022.

Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Buster Keaton, and Douglas Fairbanks will all return to the Hippodrome screen, as well as Lon Chaney, Joan Crawford, Gloria Swanson and more. The big names won’t be restricted to the screen at this year’s festival, with live appearances from storyteller Marion Kenny and Scottish folk singer Mairi Campbell, musical accompaniment from The Dodge Brothers with Mark Kermode, and the much-anticipated live narration from actor Paul McGann.

The Hippodrome will open its doors for the festival on March 16 with the world premiere of a new restoration of The Loves of Mary, Queen of Scots (1923). Rescheduled from 2020, the film chronicles the life of one of Scotland’s most celebrated historical figures: Mary Stuart.

The film will be preceded by Queen of Hearts: Mary Queen of Scots in Popular Culture, a talk from author and director of the Scottish International Storytelling Centre, Donald Smith.

On March 17, Journey to the Isles: Marjory Kennedy-Fraser will offer a mesmerising glimpse into the landscapes, folktales and songs that inspired one of Scotland’s great early collectors of Traditional Arts.

Thursday’s other event will take audiences around the world in seven films, with a specially curated programme to mark the 90th anniversary of the Institute of Amateur Cinematographers.