TV & Movies
Hocus Pocus 3 Is In Development Because Third Time’s The Charm
Original stars Omri Katz and Vinessa Shaw, who played Max and Alison, were missing from HP2 but may return for HP3.
It’s not that easy to get rid of the Sanderson sisters. Hocus Pocus 3 is officially happening, as confirmed by Sean Bailey, president of Walt Disney Studios Motion Picture Production, in a New York Times profile published on June 4. The sequel announcement comes months after Hocus Pocus 2 debuted on Disney+ in September 2022 and became the streamer’s most-viewed film premiere to date after just three days of release, making another movie a no-brainer.
The first Hocus Pocus sequel came nearly three decades after the film’s 1993 release and saw the return of Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Kathy Najimy as Winifred, Sarah, and Mary Sanderson, the youth-seeking, soul-sucking witches who arise from the dead after being conjured by a new set of exploratory witches. The film ends with the trio seemingly singing from the afterlife (in hell), but leaving enough room open for them to possibly make another comeback.
Given how 2023 will mark the 30th anniversary of the beloved film, it only makes sense that Hocus Pocus 3 was announced this year. But it may be a bit longer before you can actually watch it. Here’s everything you need to know about the newly announced third movie.
Hocus Pocus 3 Cast
No casting details have been announced, but the women who play the Sanderson sisters have all expressed varying interests in returning for a third movie. In September, Midler told Entertainment Weekly that she’s “always been envious” of actors who play their favorite character multiple times, and thinks Winifred could be the one for her — even if she’s not sure what a third movie would look like. “I’d love to have a franchise — especially a character I love playing,” she said. “I can’t imagine what the story would be, but I love Winifred, Sarah, Mary, and our relationship. We stick together through hell and high water, but we do cause mayhem, and not many women cause that much mayhem!”
Najimy also questioned what a third movie could be, but didn’t close off the possibility of returning. “I guess, never say never,” she told EW. “I don't know that there are plans for a third one, but I know fans are dedicated to this film.” However, Parker is totally on board if everyone else is. “Of course I’d be happy to have a conversation,” she said. “It just depends on what Kathy and Bette want!”
In addition to the Sanderson sisters, the main stars from the original film, Omri Katz (Max), Thora Birch (Dani), and Vinessa Shaw (Allison), have all been vocal about wanting to return to the Hocus Pocus universe, especially given how Birch was supposed to cameo in Hocus Pocus 2 but fell through. “There were three options we had for how to bring Dani back, all of which I was excited by,” she told Entertainment Tonight. “But by the time they got around to filming, I was already on something else.”
The same goes for the new set of aspiring witches that star in the sequel, with Whitney Peak stating that she wants to explore more of her character Becca’s magical abilities. “I feel like we haven’t gotten to use her magic too much,” she told Variety. “So we’re just gonna leave you guys hanging in there and hopefully, we’ll get to continue that story.”
Hocus Pocus 3 Plot
Hocus Pocus 2 actually hinted at another sequel in the post-credits scene, when the magic shop cat, Gilbert, reveals that another Black Flame candle secretly exists, proving that the Sanderson sisters could be brought back to life — again.
The storyline of Hocus Pocus 3 has yet to be revealed, with writers or other crew members also yet to be announced. However, Hocus Pocus 2 screenwriter Jen D’Angelo hopes that the storyline will give an update on where the beloved protagonists from the first movie are in their lives. “We tried so hard to get the original cast back for cameos and then it just kept not working out for one reason or the other,” she told Variety. “But I’m hoping in Hocus Pocus 3, we’ll see Max and Alison living in California.”
Hocus Pocus 3 Potential Premiere Date
Given how the movie was just announced and no production details have been revealed, fans are still a long ways off from seeing Hocus Pocus 3. Hopefully, it doesn’t take another 30 years.