Disney is conjuring up more Hocus Pocus with the official sequel coming to Disney+ in 2022. A direct followup to the cult classic Halloween movie, Hocus Pocus 2 brings back all three of its original lead stars – Bette Midler, Kathy Najimy, and Sarah Jessica Parker – to reprise their roles as the Sanderson Sisters. Forgoing a traditional theatrical release, the movie is in development specifically for Disney+ with plans to debut the sequel next year.
With Winifred, Mary, and Sarah Sanderson all returning, the sequel will see the witch trio returning to Salem once again. An official logline for Hocus Pocus 2 reads: “Three young women accidentally bring the Sanderson Sisters back to modern day Salem and must figure out how to stop the child-hungry witches from wreaking a new kind of havoc on the world.
Filming with Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker and Kathy Najimy will officially start this fall, with the sequel directed by Anne Fletcher (The Proposal,27 Dresses). As previously reported, Fletcher is taking over the project from her old friend Adam Shankman (Hairspray, The Wedding Planner), with Lynn Harris (The Shallows) serving as producer. Shankman is now busy with production in Disenchanted, but he will remain on board for Hocus Pocus 2 as an executive producer alongside Ralph Winter (Adrift) and David Kirschner (Curse of Chucky). Steven Haft (Tigerland) will co-produce. Says Shankman in a statement.
“As heartbroken as I am that I won’t be able to direct my friends Bette, Sarah Jessica and Kathy in what is sure to be nothing short of a major event for Disney+ due to scheduling conflicts, I couldn’t be more pleased to be handing over the reins to Anne, who has brought so much laughter and joy into people’s lives with her previous work. I am still grateful and proud to help shepherd this ingenious project as executive producer alongside producer Lynn Harris, whom I have loved and admired as a colleague and friend since she helped get me the job choreographing Boogie Nights.”
Fletcher added: “Now more than ever, people need to laugh. We should be laughing every day, and there is so much fun to be had with these three unbelievable women playing delicious characters from such a beloved film. I am so grateful to be able to play a part in bringing these witches back to life, and to be working with my friends at Disney again makes it all the more special. This is a movie for everyone, from the fans who grew up with the first film to the next generation of viewers, and I can’t wait to get started.”
The first Hocus Pocus was directed by Kenny Ortega and written by Mick Garris, Neil Cuthbert, and David Kirschner. Following a teenage boy (Omri Katz) who inadvertently resurrects three witches in Salem on Halloween night, the movie has become a staple of the Halloween season with a very large cult following. There have been calls for a sequel for years, and though it’s taken a while to happen, fans can now be happy to know that it’s officially on track to arrive next year. Hocus Pocus 2 will premiere on Disney+ in 2022.