Bette Midler Explains One Idea They Had For The Hocus Pocus Sequel That Would Have Tied In With The Original

Bette Midler in Hocus Pocus
(Image credit: Buena Vista Pictures)

When it was announced that Hocus Pocus 2 plans were in the works, it was time to brainstorm the perfect way to bring the Sanderson Sisters back to life. After all, it has been 30 years since we saw the rising of the sun — spoilers! — turn Winnie into stone and Sarah and Mary into dust. Bette Midler explained one idea that was tossed around for the Hocus Pocus sequel that would have tied in with the original movie.

The first at look of Hocus Pocus 2 shows the Sanderson Sisters are back together with the OG actors reprising their wicked roles. According to EW, the three leading ladies discussed with the film's director Anne Fletcher what to include in this Disney sequel when it was coming together. Midler shared one idea that would have tied in with the original.  

We also pitched [a scene about their purgatory period], that’s one of the things the three of us got together and talked about. Where have they been for the last 30 years? But, in the end, it fell by the wayside.

I can imagine a scene like this maybe at the beginning of the movie since the last film ended with the witches’ demise. Kathy Najimy, who played Mary Sanderson, said they had phone discussions about narratives and character arcs, that while they wanted the “delicious” flavor of the previous film, they also wanted to bring something new to it too.

While the original film’s opening sequence showed what led to the initial demise of the Sanderson Sisters back in the 1600s, Anne Fletcher explained the sequel’s first scene will tie back even further into history.

The opening sequence of the movie, we get some history of our witches and Billy. We get a little kiss — pardon the pun — of the Billy aspect of it, and the world that they lived in and what happened to the witches. I always missed that in the first one. Like, what are the witches the way they are? I did have that question, and the script came, and I loved the opening 1600s. I pushed that a little bit more, because I really wanted to point at, ever so slightly.... the idea that the 1600s and the now are the same. There’s no difference. I just want to poke at the irony of it. But, in the joy of the film you get to see the young version of them and have a great time and understand the what and why of what happened to them.

While we know the original actors playing the sisters will come back, and there will be a few more ties. However, the character of Allison will not be making an appearance as well as another popular Hocus Pocus character Binx played by Jason Marsden won't be returning either. The sibling duo of Max and Dani played by Thora Birch and Omri Katz will not be in the sequel either. Fletcher’s reasoning for why these OG stars are not returning is because she couldn't work them into the film. If it was up to me, I would have had the original characters somehow help the young leads of this long-awaited sequel take on the sinister sisters like they did 30 years ago. But on the bright side, Doug Jones will be back to play the lovable zombie Billy Butcherson. So, at least the '90s generation will have that to look forward to.

Like all nostalgic films that make a long-awaited return, I’m confident there will be a mix of old and new flavors that audiences today will enjoy. You can find Hocus Pocus 2 on your Disney+ subscription on September 30.

Carly Levy
Entertainment Writer

Just your average South Floridian cinephile who believes the pen is mightier than the sword.