While spooky season is over according to the calendar (and pockets of the internet), there are those who want to keep the fun going just a little longer. Which is good, because Disney+’s Hocus Pocus 2 is currently filming, and there’s a ton of new information as to who’s going to star in the film. It includes some old favorites, along with a lot of new stars hailing from shows like Ted Lasso and Veep!
Before we get too deep into the faces of old and new in Hocus Pocus 2, it’s a good time to go over the plot of the new film. Recently announced, along with the news of the Anne Fletcher directed sequel currently being filmed in Rhode Island, the synopsis for the next chapter was also dropped by the good people at Disney+. So we’ll quickly run through what is, and isn’t, going to be a part of Hocus Pocus 2’s story, before we move onto who we’ll be seeing run amok this time out.
What’s Hocus Pocus 2 Going To Be About?
The return of the infamous Sanderson sisters is, pretty much, predicated by what you’d expect in Hocus Pocus 2. With Disney+’s official announcement of production on the sequel came a synopsis that sounds familiar, but still ready for new excitement to take hold. Here’s the official rundown:
As you can see, there’s some good news and bad news for Hocus Pocus fans who have been waiting for this sequel for some time. If you were hoping that Hocus Pocus 2 would be an adaptation of author A.W. Jantha’s Hocus Pocus and the All New Sequel, that’s not in the cards. However, there are some returning faces from the original 1993 film, as well as a load of new folks joining in on the fun. Let’s start things off with the list of returning players in Hocus Pocus 2.
OG Hocus Pocus Characters Are Back, Including Billy Butcherson
Surely, you can’t have a Hocus Pocus 2 without the original Sanderson sisters returning to the field of play. But, in addition to that trio of terrifying treats, this sequel is going to see legendary creature actor and Star Trek: Discovery cast member Doug Jones aka fan-favorite Billy Butcherson coming back as well! So far, we should expect the following Hocus Pocus actors to return for the Disney+ follow up:
- Bette Midler
- Kathy Najimy
- Sarah Jessica Parker
- Doug Jones
That there is a list of exciting potential for Hocus Pocus 2 adventure! So let’s run through our returning cast members, and see what they’ve been up to as of late.
Bette Midler As Winnie Sanderson
Winifred “Winnie” Sanderson was expertly played in Hocus Pocus by the iconic Bette Midler. Honestly, how could you have a Hocus Pocus 2 without inviting the divine Ms. M along for the ride? Though the same could be said for her equally powerful sisters, and lucky us everyone’s back in style.
Kathy Najimy As Mary Sanderson
While it’s obviously fitting that Kathy Najimy returns to play Mary Sanderson in Hocus Pocus 2, there’s another exciting reason her casting in the sequel is exciting. We won’t spoil it for now, but let’s just say that her recurring guest role on HBO’s Veep could lend an extra magical ingredient to this second spell of adventure.
Sarah Jessica Parker As Sarah Sanderson
Sarah Sanderson may have been the more social and less strategic witch of the Hocus Pocus trio. But much like the Three Stooges (that seemingly inspired the Sanderson sisters), you’d be crazy to invoke only part of this group. Not even her return for HBO’s And Just Like That could have prevented Sarah Jessica Parker from enchanting a new batch of children with her siren song.
Doug Jones As Fan Fave Billy Butcherson
Though we have no word on whether any of the original kids from Hocus Pocus will be back in some capacity, we do know our first returning cast member outside of the Sanderson sisters trio. And it’s Guillermo del Toro mainstay/Star Trek: Discovery crew member Doug Jones, who originated the zombified role of Billy Butcherson almost 30 years ago and is still a popular Halloween costume years later. Now that his mouth isn’t sewn up, and Mr. Jones has built quite the resume in the ensuing decades, maybe we’ll get to see Billy chatting a bit more about his own story, and the legend of the Sandersons.
As of this moment, these are the faces from the Hocus Pocus legacy that will be coming back for more. So that means the pressure’s kind of on the roster of new faces coming into view to give them a magically hard time. If you thought the returning cast was cool, just wait until you see the new kids on the broom for Hocus Pocus round 2!
Hocus Pocus Sequel's New Cast Members Include Ted Lasso Star Hannah Waddingham, A Veep Mini Reunion And More
The only thing more exciting than the returning participants in Hocus Pocus 2's cast are the newcomers we've been teasing. Ted Lasso and Veep are just the start too, as there's quite a few young up and comers joining the fight as well. Here's the full list of new actors joining the world of Hocus Pocus 2:
- Hannah Waddingham
- Sam Richardson
- Tony Hale
- Whitney Peak
- Lilia Buckingham
- Belissa Escobedo
- Juju Brener
- Froy Gutierrez
- Taylor Henderson
- Nina Kitchen
Friends, it’s time for biscuits with the boss. Coming over from the cast of Apple TV+’s Ted Lasso is Rebecca Welton herself. Though we have a feeling actor Hannah Waddingham's new gig in Hocus Pocus 2 might be more reminiscent of that time she shamed Cersei Lannister on HBO’s Game of Thrones, it’s all gravy so long as Ms. Waddingham gets to wield some magic.
The Veep connections start to pay off here, as one of Hocus Pocus 2’s new cast members happens to be Richard Splett himself, Sam Richardson! It also helps that Richardson added some paranormal experience to his resume in 2021, as he was previously seen in this year’s horror-comedy whodunnit Werewolves Within.
Tony Hale As Mayor Jefry Traske?
Continuing those good Veep vibes is the casting of Tony Hale, another member of the HBO comedy’s wise-cracking tribe. Hale is also a Disney+ vet, having starred as part of the company's original series adaptation of The Mysterious Benedict Society. If the DisInsider’s recent report is to be believed, Hale’s Hocus Pocus 2 character is the mayor of Salem, Jefry Traske.
Building off of that same DisInsider cache of supposed knowledge, Hocus Pocus 2 will be centered around a trio of characters named Becca, Izzy, and Cassie. While we don’t know if that’s 100% the full story, or who will play those exact roles, actor Whitney Peak is one of the presumptive teenagers who will light the Black Flame Candle this time around. Interestingly enough, Ms. Peak’s previous credits include Netflix’s Chilling Adventures of Sabrina and HBO Max’s Gossip Girl reboot.
Rounding out the presumed cast of new leads for Hocus Pocus 2 is actor Belissa Escobedo, who was recently seen getting scary with FX’s American Horror Stories. Also an alum from ABC’s The Baker and The Beauty, Escobedo is another member of the Disney family waiting to give the Sandersons what for!
You may know him as Nolan Holloway on MTV’s Teen Wolf, or as Cruel Summer’s Jamie Henson on Freeform. Froy Guiterrez is about to find himself in the middle of magical mayhem, thanks to his casting in Hocus Pocus 2. Good thing he’ll have that experience from Hulu’s Light as a Feather to fall back on in these uncertain times.
The rest of the newcomers to the Hocus Pocus 2 cast include a range of actors so fresh this movie is among some of their first major credits. Starting her acting career on an episode of TV’s Modern Family, actor Lilia Buckingham is one of the three young leads at the heart of this new adventure. So is actor Taylor Henderson, who is making her live action debut after being heard as the English dub voice of Earwig in this year’s Earwig and the Witch.
Meanwhile, young Juju Brener has a look that recalls the role of Emily Binx, sister to Thackery and victim of the Sanderson sisters. Could we be seeing the Binx family yet again, thus opening the door for Thackery to return as a result? And last, but not least, is actor Nina Kitchen, who, according to her IMDb, is making Hocus Pocus 2 her first screen credit ever. Talk about making a magical entrance, as Kitchen could see this long-awaited sequel kickstarting her young career.
Is There Room In Hocus Pocus 2’s Cast For Thora Birch And More OG Cast Members?
At the end of our Hocus Pocus 2 celebration, one point must be restated for clarity. As of this moment, it doesn’t look like Max, Allison, or Dani will be a part of the new film’s story. Though we did see Vinessa Shaw express willingness to return for the sequel, as well as Thora Birch celebrating Hocus Pocus 2’s announcement in a way that indicated she’s also game. Still, nothing official is in the works at this moment. Though if you really want to learn about Max and Allison’s daughter, and her run in with the Sanderson sisters, you can check out the novel Hocus Pocus and the All New Sequel.
Then again, the vague synopsis for Hocus Pocus 2 does call for high school aged kids, and Poppy Dennison is 17 years old in the sequel novel. The possibilities are endless at this moment, and even if it turns out that this is the story we’re going to see adapted for the screen, you’ll be ready to experience it all in living breathing color. Which, naturally, isn’t set in stone just yet.
While we don’t have an official release date for Hocus Pocus 2, we do know that it’ll be a Disney+ original! Set to be released in the fall of 2022, an educated/hopeful guess would say that one weekend next October will see the Black Flame Candle lit once more. It’s nothing to worry about, as it’s all just another bunch of hocus pocus; and one that fans have been waiting almost three decades to enjoy. So keep your Disney+ subscription in order as you wait, and don’t forget to check out the beloved movies already uploaded to Disney’s Digital library.
CinemaBlend's James Bond (expert). Also versed in Large Scale Aggressors, time travel, and Guillermo del Toro. He fights for The User.
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