The Sanderson sisters will be returning to Salem nearly 29 years after the Black Flame Candle was first lit. Disney on Tuesday officially revealed the release date for Hocus Pocus 2, Disney+'s anticipated sequel to the cult classic 1993 film, also revealing during the studio's upfronts presentation Tuesday the first footage from the film.
Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Kathy Najimy will be summoned back as Winifred, Sara, and Mary Sanderson on Friday, Sept. 30, just in time for Halloween, when two young girls light the Black Flame Candle, a mistake that Max made nearly three decades ago. Rough-cut footage showed at the Tuesday presentation showed the moment the sisters were once again summoned, with Middler's Winifred screaming, "Lock up your children! Yes, Salem, we're back," according to Entertainment Tonight. The footage then showed the Sanderson sisters launching into a cover of Elton John's "The B- Is Back." Meanwhile, Doug Jones' Billy Butcherson also made an appearance, as well as a still-unnamed character played by Sam Richardson. The clip also featured Tony Hale, who plays the mayor of Salem.
Details about the upcoming film still remain scarce. It was previously confirmed that Hocus Pocus 2 will follow high schoolers Becca, Cassie, and Izzy – portrayed by Whitney Peak, Lilia Buckingham, and Belissa Escobedo – as they light the Black Flame Candle and accidentally bring the Sanderson sisters back to present-day Salem. As the Sanderson sisters begin to wreak havoc on Salem in an attempt to lengthen their lifespans, the young women have until midnight on All Hallow's Eve to stop them. Rounding out the cast is Hannah Waddingham, Dan Finnerty, and Sam Richardson, as well as RuPaul's Drag Race stars Ginger Minj, Kornbread "The Snack" Jeté, and Kahmora Hall, who will portray drag versions of Winifred, Mary, and Sarah. Thora Birch, who starred in the original Hocus Pocus, will not return as Dani.
Anne Fletcher, who is most well-known for directing romantic comedies such as The Proposal and 27 Dresses, serves as director for Hocus Pocus 2. She said in a statement last year that she is "beyond thrilled to be involved in the sequel to a film that is as beloved as Hocus Pocus," noting that "around the world have embraced these characters and have made this film a Halloween tradition whose popularity continues to grow." Adam Shankman, who directed the original film, is attached to the project as producer. Hocus Pocus 2 premieres on Disney+ on Friday, Sept. 30.