Fans are hopeful news of the sequel to the 1993 Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Kathy Najimy-led film won't turn out to be just a bunch of hocus pocus.

By Dave Quinn / People.com
October 24, 2019
AF archive / Alamy Stock Photo

A virgin must have lit the black flame candle because the Sanderson sisters are coming back!

Disney is developing a follow up to its 1993 cult classic Hocus Pocus — which starred Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Kathy Najimy as a trio of witches who, after being accidentally resurrected on Halloween, set out to suck the life out of a town of children to undo the curse that sent them away 300 years earlier.

Collider was first to break the news. Variety also confirmed. Disney did not immediately respond to People’s request for comment.

With no stars officially attached, it is not known whether the project will be a direct sequel to the original film or whether it will be a reboot, with a new set of characters. However, the outlet says Disney is hopeful Midler, Parker, and Najimy will be involved in some capacity.

Either way, the sequel — which will be written by Workaholics writer and co-producer Jen D’Angelo — will air on the studio’s new streaming platform, Disney+.

Hocus Pocus was a flop at the box office when it was first released, but became a favorite film among families over the years thanks to countless re-airings on television. This year alone, it was scheduled to air a whopping 27 times during Freeform’s annual “31 Nights of Halloween” movie lineup.

There has long been rumors that the original would get a sequel.

Back in 2017, it was reported that scribe Scarlett Lacey and original producer David Kirschner were developing a remake for the Disney Channel. That project was not meant to have Midler, Parker, and Najimy reprising their roles, to much fan outcry.

It’s going to be cheap!” Midler told People about the project.

Midler has long expressed interest in returning to her role of Winifred Sanderson, which she has said many times before is her favorite acting role.

During a Reddit AMA in Nov. 2014, the singer-actress encouraged fans to “inundate the Disney company,”

“I have canvassed the girls and they are willing to do it, but we have no say in it,” said Midler — who has dressed up for Halloween as Winifred Sanderson since and even sang “I Put a Spell on You,” her hit from the movie, on tour. “So if you want a Hocus Pocus 2, ask the Walt Disney company.”

In fall of 2016, Parker also expressed excitement at the idea of reuniting with her evil Salem witch sisters someday.

I would love that,” the Sex and the City star said on Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen. “I think we’ve all been fairly vocal about being very keen but that hasn’t created any ground swell of movement.”

As for Najimy, she was part of the movie’s 25th anniversary celebration last year at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery, reuniting with Hocus Pocus’ original director Kenny Ortega and the film’s other cast members Omri Katz (Max), Thora Birch (Dani), Doug Jones (the mummy Billy Butcherson), Vinessa Shaw (Allison) and Tobias Jelenik (Ice’s sidekick Jay).

Disney+ is set to debut on Nov. 12.

Just last week, Disney released an epic list of feature films, animated series, and shows planned for the new platform upon launch.

The list included everything from Disney+ originals like the highly-anticipated Star Wars live-action TV series The Mandalorian, to cult classics like Newsies.

Other titles included Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron, several National Geographic Channel shows, 100 Disney Channel Original Movies, 5,000 episodes of Disney Channel original programming, all 30 seasons of The Simpsons, and just about every animated classic in the Disney vault.

In addition to the beloved content coming in November, Disney+ will also eventually see the launch of several brand-new series, like WandaVision featuring Avengers stars Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany; The Falcon and The Winter Soldier starring Anthony Mackie and Sebastian Stan; and upcoming reboots of Home Alone and Night at the Museum.

Plans for the new service were first announced in April. Disney+ will cost $6.99 a month or $69.99 a year, and can be bundled with Hulu and ESPN+ subscriptions for $12.99 per month.

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