'Hocus Pocus 2'
Source: Disney Plus

The Highly-Anticipated 'Hocus Pocus 2' Has Been Brewing, and There's Finally a Release Date

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May. 18 2022, Updated 2:29 p.m. ET

Are you ready to have a spell cast on you all over again? Hocus Pocus fans, get ready to return to Salem and get psyched for the long-awaited sequel to the Halloween staple. Subsequent to Kenny Ortega's 1993 film Hocus Pocus being deemed a critical and box-office flop, it cemented itself as a family-friendly cult classic. Come on, any film that sees Grammy winner, Emmy winner, and Oscar nominee Bette Midler (The Rose) as its lead is destined to be a campy success.

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In October 2019 — over two decades after the release of Hocus Pocus — multiple outlets reported that Disney was finally delivering the long-awaited sequel fans have been demanding. So, when is Hocus Pocus 2 coming out?

'Hocus Pocus.'
Source: Walt Disney Pictures
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When will 'Hocus Pocus 2' be released?

In a series of announcements from the 2021 Disney Plus Day, Disney released the first photo of the sisters from the Hocus Pocus 2 set. In addition to this now-iconic photo, Disney re-confirmed that the film will be released in Fall 2022.

Bette Midler, who plays Winifred Sanderson, previously told Entertainment Tonight that she was "absolutely" down to reprise her iconic role prior to the sequel announcement.

Penning the caption "I can't wait to fly!" in an Instagram post on May 20, 2021, Bette officially announced she was reprising her role and that Hocus Pocus 2 was in production.

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The mystery regarding Hocus Pocus 2's exact premiere date is over, however, as it was officially announced in May 2022 that the sequel will hit Disney Plus on Friday, Sept. 30, 2022.

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Who is involved in 'Hocus Pocus 2'?

Collider published an exclusive in 2019 that revealed Hocus Pocus 2 has found their head writer. Jen D'Angelo — who was previously a writer and a co-producer for Workaholics, wrote the script for the sequel. Although Jen has written for a number of television shows, including Cougar Town and Happy Together, the sequel will be her first full-length feature film script.

'Hocus Pocus.'
Source: Walt Disney Pictures
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The film's cast will include all three original Sanderson sisters — Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker (Sex and the City), and Kathy Najimy (Sister Act) — as well as actors Sam Richardson (The Afterparty) and Tony Hale (Veep). According to Entertainment Weekly, the latter actor will play the mayor of Salem.

Actor Doug Jones, who played Billy Butcherson, posted a photo to Instagram confirming he will, too, reprise his role.

Not only that, but iconic RuPaul's Drag Race queens Ginger Minj, Kornbread "The Snack" Jeté, and Kahmora Hall will portray drag versions of Winifred, Mary, and Sarah, respectively! Drag Race superfans are perhaps even more excited than the Disney adults.

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Sadly, not all those who worked on the original are returning. It's been confirmed that Thora Birch (Ghost World) will not reprise her role as Dani Dennison in the sequel.

Legendary Disney collaborator and director Kenny Ortega told Digital Spy in 2020 that he was not invited to return as a director, and Disney executives instead invited Hairspray director Adam Shankman to guide the project. However, at present, Anne Fletcher (The Proposal, 27 Dresses) has taken Adam's place.

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"I am beyond thrilled to be involved in the sequel to a film that is as beloved as Hocus Pocus," Anne Fletcher stated last year, per Entertainment Weekly.

"Fans around the world have embraced these characters and have made this film a Halloween tradition whose popularity continues to grow, and how lucky am I to be back at Disney with these three extraordinarily talented ladies in the iconic roles they created, as well as our fabulous new additions to the cast?"

'Hocus Pocus.'
Source: Walt Disney Pictures
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In an article by Variety published on Nov. 12, 2021, the plot of Hocus Pocus 2 has finally been revealed. The film will pick up 30 years after the events of the original. High schoolers Becca (Whitney Peak), Cassie (Lilia Buckingham), and Izzy (Belissa Escobedo) have incited the wrath of the three Sanderson sisters, and must stop them from wreaking havoc on Salem before midnight on Halloween.

"Lock up your children! Yes, Salem, we're back!" Bette Midler's Winifred squawks in sneak peak "rough-cut" footage. Until September 30, we'll be rewatching the OG Hocus Pocus and listening to "I Put a Spell on You" on repeat.

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