“Hocus Pocus 2”: What we know so far

Andrea Alverca, Staff Writer

After 28 years, the Sanderson sisters are finally coming back. Directed by Kenny Ortega and starring Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker and Kathy Najimy, “Hocus Pocus” is considered a cult classic during the Halloween season and is finally getting its well-deserved sequel. Rumored to be in development for years until 2019, “Hocus Pocus 2” was properly confirmed when Midler announced the return of the Sanderson sisters on Instagram.

The original movie tells the story of the Sanderson sisters–Winifred (Midler), Sarah (Parker) and Mary (Najimy)–who are executed in the 1600s for witchcraft. Winifred manages to cast a spell that will resurrect the sisters during a full moon on Halloween when a virgin lights the Black Candle flame. Fast forward to 1993, when teenager Max (Omri Katz) unintentionally resurrects them to impress his crush Allison (Vanessa Shaw).

“Hocus Pocus 2” will revolve around three sisters who accidentally bring the Sandersons back to modern-day Salem. This leads to a mission to stop the child-hungry witches from wreaking havoc. Adam Shankman (“Hairspray,” “17 Again”) was originally anticipated to direct the sequel, but left the project to direct “Disenchanted,” the sequel to the 2007 Disney film “Enchanted.” Instead, director Anne Fletcher (“27 Dresses,” “The Proposal”) has taken over for “Hocus Pocus 2.”

On Oct. 15, four new additions to the “Hocus Pocus 2” cast were announced. “Zoe Valentine’s” Lilia Buckingham, Whitney Peak from “Gossip Girl” and “Cruel Summer’s” Froy Gutierrez. Up-and-coming actress Taylor Henderson was also announced to join the highly anticipated sequel. Henderson is set to play one of three new lead characters who will star in the film.

“Hocus Pocus 2” is currently in production and has changed filming locations from Salem to Rhode Island. It’s possible that the film will include several scenes set prior to the canon, which presents the possibility of learning more about the Sanderson sisters’ backstory. Sticking to the history of witches, while Rhode Island never held a single trial during the witch hunts, it did have a death penalty for witchcraft. Given how close Rhode Island and Massachusetts are to each other, it would make sense why filming is taking place in Rhode Island.