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Boston fest bakes bows

Five world premieres to unspool at festival

The 26th edition of the Boston Film Festival, the old-timer of regional fests, is ready to come roaring back with five world premieres among the more than two dozen features and docus set to unspool Sept. 17-23.

This year the fest has a new venue, the downtown indie Stuart Street Playhouse.

The opening night films are both premieres: writer/director Jim Eckhart’s “To Be Friends,” executive produced by his brother Aaron Eckhart, and Suri Krishnamma’s “Locked In,” a locally shot thriller with Eliza Dushku (“Dollhouse”) who has local roots. The Eckharts and Dushku are among the talent coming to support their films.

Also making their bows are the crime drama “The Last Harbor,” shot in Rockport, Mass.; the documentary “Please Remove Your Shoes” about problems with airline security; and “Norman Mailer: The American,” a docu directed by Joe Mantegna.

A selection of films will also be making East Coast bows, including “Welcome to the Rileys,” with James Gandolfini and Kristen Stewart.

The week of screenings will include a tribute to the late Roy Scheider with the 35th anniversary showing of “Jaws.” His final film, “Iron Cross,” closes the fest. Scheider’s wife Brenda will accept his posthumous career achievement award.

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