UPDATE: Following reports that Tina Fey was producing a sequel to Hocus Pocus, Variety confirmed with the actresses' reps that she, in fact, is not working on that title. It's entirely possible, of course, that someone else is still pursuing Hocus Pocus 2 on account of its awesomeness, but without Fey, the news is a whole lot less exciting.
Apparently people really like Hocus Pocus. The 1993 kids' film has been a cable fixture for about twenty years now, particularly on kids' channels where the movie raised an entire generation of young girls. It isn't really a huge surprise that Disney would attempt to capitalize on that exposure with a big name, though the one they've been courting suggests Hocus Pocus 2 isn't just some quickie cash-in.
The Tracking Board reports that Tina Fey is producing the sequel to Hocus Pocus, which apparently is one of those films that's sort of a sequel but also sort of a remake. The plot is described as follows...
The sequel will pick up years after the original, focusing on a housewife who is related to the Sanderson sisters, who teams up with a witch hunter to save her children after they run afoul of some resurrected witches while out trick-or-treating.
There's no cast or director attached as of yet to Hocus Pocus 2, though Tina Fey's Little Stranger production company is the biggest creative force involved thus far, and it is rumored that Fey and Melissa McCarthy are being sought for roles. Could Fey play the housewife? Or maybe even the witch hunter? And will these be three new witch characters? Or is there a chance they could get Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker and Kathy Najimy to reprise their roles as resurrected witches who arrive in modern day to cause havoc on Halloween night?
The original film made about $39.5 million, which is a pretty solid haul for an early nineties live-action kids film. More significantly, the movie played for years on cable and was an early VHS favorite. The core audience for the first film is now likely in their late twenties and thirties, and are seeking something they could watch with their daughters. Since there's no release date for The Human Centipede Part III, why not Hocus Pocus 2?
There's also the chance Tina Fey is coming on as producer because she's too busy to star in the film. Fey is currently involved in the comedy The Nest , and after that she'll head over to the Middle East for The Taliban Shuffle. The Hollywood Reporter has revealed that the project has attracted the interest of Glenn Ficara and John Requa, the helmers of Crazy Stupid Love and I Love You, Phillip Morris. The story is based on Kim Barker-penned memoir where Fey will play an embedded reporter tackling the complexities of being a foreign woman in the Middle East.
While that sounds like a hot button topic, Tina Fey and Lorne Michaels are producing, suggesting that this could be something a bit funnier or more outlandish. Ficarra and Requa are currently putting the finishing touches on Focus with Will Smith, so The Taliban Shuffle will likely start shooting soon for a late-2015 release. As for Hocus Pocus 2, we'll continue to track that sequel's possible progress.