BootLeg Betty

Hocus Pocus II In Development? Without Bette Midler? Will It Work? I Doubt It!!!

Movie Hole
Exclusive : Disney developing sequel to Hocus Pocus
Clint Morris
July 6, 2012

Any fans of “Hocus Pocus”, 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, didn’t ya?

Actually, I remember liking it too. Don’t think I’ve ever seen it since it was a new release rental in the local video library – this is going back some fifteen years or so – but I do recall it being a fun family flick. And if I’m not mistaken, introduced me – and several other ‘What is happening to me?’ readers – to the rather foxy Vinessa Shaw (who would go on to play a much more saucier role in Stanley Kubrick’s “Eyes Wide Shut”).

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-”American Beauty” Thora Birch) to stop them. Silliness and special effects ensued.

So here’s what I got. While I’m not sure if Ortega is involved, Disney is quietly developing plans for a sequel to the rather popular ’90s flick. If the title suggests anything it’s that “Hocus Pocus 2 : Rise of the Elderwitch”, 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 wasn’t fake!?) and blonde wig to star in the original, and Bette Midler doesn’t get up to much filmwise these days. Not even sure where Kathy Najimy’s been hiding, but I do know she’s significantly thinner than she was back in 1993, so audiences likely won’t even recognize her if she was cast. In other words, not shocked to hear it’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 producers…. Vinessa Shaw, all grown, as the chin-wetting heroine, would work for… well, me.

“Hocus Pocus 2 : Rise of the Elderwitch” is only in the development stages at the moment, which means they’re merely tinkering with story ideas, but the plan is to have the film in front of audiences sometime next year.

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7 thoughts on “Hocus Pocus II In Development? Without Bette Midler? Will It Work? I Doubt It!!!

    1. The good thing is that Bette said that was her favorite character to play…..the only negative is they blew her up in the end, but all the characters (witches) blew up, so how could they bring SJP back! Winnie was the movie!

  1. It would be marvelous if Disney invited The Divine Miss M to be Winifred again. As the piece said “Bette Midler doesn’t get up to much filmwise these days…”, so Miss M is available and Disney could cut a nice deal with her. It would be great for both of them and a delight for us, Followers of The Divine One.

  2. Previous rumours of a sequel had it titled: Hocus Pocus: Rise of the Sanderson Sisters. Now that it’s changed to Rise of the Elderwitch, it appears that Disney probably doesn’t intend to bring any of the original characters back. I agree, Mister D, it does make it tougher when all the witches died in the end. However, Hollywood resurrections of deceased characters have happened in the past (can we keep our fingers crossed?). Sometimes with sequels there are the “cameo” appearances with actors from the original film, which would still be fun to watch–and probably, more likely to happen if we see Bette in the sequel. In any event, very interesting news indeed! Loved the original Hocus Pocus, so this is one story I intend to follow. Thanks for the update–as always, terrific news. I’m curious to find out how this one develops. (By the way, Disney should be announcing shortly the “extras” on the Blu-Ray Hocus Pocus DVD. I’m hoping it’s loaded with lots of material….especially if Bette provides some audio commentary–that would be brilliant!)

  3. It will not be the same without her because she made it unique and the character was made for her. It’s like making beaches without bette, wouldn’t be the same. She has something that makes the character fun and lovable and to every kid that seen the original would say that Bette made that character the best dang witch alive and that it won’t be the same without her. So I’d like to see her in the new hocus pocus 2.

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