Exclusive : Disney developing sequel to Hocus Pocus
July 6, 2012
Any fans of â€œHocus Pocusâ€, the 1993 flick starring Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker and Kathy Najimy as three vacuum-riding witches doing battle with trick or treaters on their night of their resurrection? What about you? Yes! You! The one trying to pop the nose wart with the dislodged F5 key on his iPad console? You liked it, didnâ€™t ya?
Actually, I remember liking it too. Donâ€™t think Iâ€™ve ever seen it since it was a new release rental in the local video library â€“ this is going back some fifteen years or so â€“ but I do recall it being a fun family flick. And if Iâ€™m not mistaken, introduced me â€“ and several other â€˜What is happening to me?â€™ readers â€“ to the rather foxy Vinessa Shaw (who would go on to play a much more saucier role in Stanley Kubrickâ€™s â€œEyes Wide Shutâ€).
Directed by choreographer cum filmmaker Kenny Ortega, the squeaky-clean family escape told of three sister witches Winnie (Midler), Mary (Najimy) and Sarah (Parker) who, after 300 years, are resurrected in Salem Massachusetts on Halloween night, and it us up to two teenagers (Shaw and Omri Katz), a young girl (a pre-â€American Beautyâ€ Thora Birch) to stop them. Silliness and special effects ensued.
So hereâ€™s what I got. While Iâ€™m not sure if Ortega is involved, Disney is quietly developing plans for a sequel to the rather popular â€™90s flick. If the title suggests anything itâ€™s that â€œHocus Pocus 2 : Rise of the Elderwitchâ€, will feature a new cackling evildoer whose been unfortunately let loose again on suburban America.
Not surprising, I guess, that Disney would start fresh with Parker now a significantly more successful and in-demand actress than what she was when she strapped on the fake nose (oh, that wasnâ€™t fake!?) and blonde wig to star in the original, and Bette Midler doesnâ€™t get up to much filmwise these days. Not even sure where Kathy Najimyâ€™s been hiding, but I do know sheâ€™s significantly thinner than she was back in 1993, so audiences likely wonâ€™t even recognize her if she was cast. In other words, not shocked to hear itâ€™s an all-new tale, though set in the same surrounds as the first film and likely tackling similar territory. But if I may make a suggestion to the producersâ€¦. Vinessa Shaw, all grown, as the chin-wetting heroine, would work forâ€¦ well, me.
â€œHocus Pocus 2 : Rise of the Elderwitchâ€ is only in the development stages at the moment, which means theyâ€™re merely tinkering with story ideas, but the plan is to have the film in front of audiences sometime next year.