Hocus Pocus is being remade by Disney Channel without the original cast or director

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Halloween is finally drawing near, never mind the fact that most stores have had spooky decorations, costumes and bags of fun-sized candy for the holiday on their shelves since July 6. Sorry, that’s a rant for another post.

One of the annual traditions of many a Halloween enthusiast is at least one screening of the 1993 Disney movie Hocus Pocus. And now, after enduring audience interest, a “reimagining” of the original tale of the witchy Sanderson sisters is on the way. The trick to this treat – the original stars, Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker and Kathy Najimy, are not returning. I feel like Charlie Brown getting a rock from Disney in my trick or treating pillowcase.

Deadline reports that a remake of the Halloween classic is in the works for the Disney Channel with a new cast and a new director (Kenny Ortega, who directed the original and other classics for the Mouse House, including High School Musical, is out as well). There’s very little information as of yet on the script, which is centered around a new story and new characters and is being written by The Royals‘ Scarlett Lacey. But one of the original movie’s producers, David Kirschner, is serving as executive producer on the new project.

I can’t believe they’re going forward with this without the women who made the movie the beloved cult classic that it is. It’s not that they weren’t game. I mean, just last year Sarah Jessica Parker said of a reunion of the Sanderson gals, “I would love that.” If that wasn’t enough, Bette, after joking that the chance of a sequel to Hocus Pocus was on hold because Disney was having “trouble finding a virgin,” showed up at her annual Hulaween party dressed like Winnie Sanderson and looking amazing.

All I have to say about this development is NOPE. I’m a fan of the holiday as much as the next person, and I’m kind of excited to see Jamie Lee Curtis return to the Halloween franchise. But this? As far as I’m concerned: no Bette, no dice. She put a spell on me that can’t be broken. #neverforget

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34 Responses to “Hocus Pocus is being remade by Disney Channel without the original cast or director”

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  1. HeyThere! says:

    This will always be the classic/good version!!!! Reminds me of my childhood during Halloween time.

  2. Liberty says:

    Bleh. Nope. Even the small children in my far-reaching pod of family and friends love this movie.

    “When accountants and insurance agents run Hollywood, Chapter 6.”

    • Rose says:

      I need advice, my daughter is 3.5 is that too young to watch it do you think? I’m gagging to watch it and I love Halloween!

      • Swak says:

        Not at all. My granddaughter was watching it last year at age 4 and loved it!

      • I know times have changed, but this movie gave me nightmares as a kid. I love it as an adult, but the whole witches stealing children and eating their soul/youth disturbed me as a kid.

      • Meg says:

        When I’m wondering about age appropriateness for movies or shows for my kids I check out the info on https://www.commonsensemedia.org/
        I find it really helpful on making viewing decisions for my (over sensitive) kiddos.

      • Brittney B. says:

        Eeeek! I saw it at 5 or 6 and was seriously traumatized. Regular vivid nightmares kept me up, then turned into years of nightly rituals to check for witches. I enjoy the movie now, but these pictures of her face with those teeth still scare the hell out of me a little bit.

  3. Clare says:

    One of my favourite films (along with Sister Act). We watch it every Halloween!

  4. Lucy2 says:

    I don’t get it. If the original still has enough interest, why not just re-air that?

    • Lua says:

      Because Hollywood doesn’t have any original ideas anymore, so they keep stomping on all of the movies we love to make a quick buck with the kids 😒
      My 10 year old step daughter loves this movie, and I will definitely not be showing her this version!

  5. Lara says:

    Nope, they ruined Dirty Dancing so they can leave this well alone

    • Swak says:

      Footloose was ruined too. Have never seen the remake of it. This is just a BIG NO. My 5 year old granddaughter LOVES Hocus Pocus.

  6. Nicole says:

    No thanks

  7. Blaire Carter says:

    On behalf of witches everywhere—NO, just NO!

  8. OSTONE says:

    I’m all in for a sequel with the original cast. A remake? No thanks.

  9. grabbyhands says:

    This is why we can’t have nice things.

    And I say this as someone who doesn’t even count this as a favorite Halloween tradition (Halloweentown for the win!) movie.

  10. third ginger says:

    Yet another unnecessary reboot. Also, went shopping at a huge Halloween store with my daughter and her girlfriend. So much Sanderson sisters merchandise!!

  11. STRIPE says:

    But also, whatever. I don’t have to see it and the old one still exists. Ghostbusters fan Boyd should have had a similar attitude

  12. MellyMel says:

    Nope! Not watching it! Halloween is my favorite holiday and I watch Hocus Pocus at least once every year. They keep remaking movies I grew up with and it needs to stop!

  13. jwoolman says:

    Kenny Ortega is a genius, but why do a remake? Just let him loose on an entirely new show. You shouldn’t do remakes of movies that still work so well. The original is basically timeless. I think kids can manage to cope with a plot set in an earlier time. Why pretend everything is happening right now?

  14. Mindy says:

    What do you mean you can’t believe they’re remaking the movie? That’s what they do now! There is NOT ONE ORIGINAL IDEA coming out of the House of Mouse now. They’re remaking every damn animated film as a live action movie, and they’re remaking this because their target audience doesn’t know (or care) who the actresses in the original are. Plain and simple. It’s STUPID logic on their part, but why would they mess with their new business model that has been successful?

    • adastraperaspera says:

      True. They just take the same stories and put tween-heart throbs in them to rake in some cash. Whatever. No way will they make much on this remake, because the original is just too fabulous. Love Kathy Najimy. And Bette, well–The Divine Miss M!

  15. Littlestar says:

    No way, this sounds terrible. It’s a classic that I watch ever year, it’s one of my favorite Halloween movies along with an animated 70s version of Sleepy Hollow.

  16. Betsy says:

    Ugh. What for?

  17. Erica_V says:

    Freeform will be showing the original (aka the only Hocus Pocus that will ever matter) for 24 hours straight on Halloween Day just FYI!

  18. deering24 says:

    Aw, come on, you guys! Wouldn’t this be the perfect Taylor Swift movie vehicle? 😉

  19. Robin says:

    Hollywood strikes again. No more original ideas, just politics. Remaking Hocus Pocus is an incredibly stupid idea. The original is a great, fun movie. They won’t be able to top it.

  20. Marianne says:

    Yeah, I dont care for a remake either. One could argue that the special effects would at least be be better, but this is the disney channel so its not like Im holding out hope.

    One could also argue that they obviously look older, but they could remedied as well by saying they’ve been cursed or without kids souls they’ve been aging or whatever.

    Most likely, the casts salaries were too much for the disney channel. But then perhaps making it a feature film would have been a better choice. Theres enough of a cult following that it could have worked.

  21. xo says:

    Ah, me too.

    My only thought is, if you’re someone who has the power to green light something like this, it’s important that you understand the appeal of the original. What made it work? Why did people care about it? Why was it a thing? If you don’t & your interest is primarily in making money, you’re going to shoot & miss.

  22. Flutterby says:

    Um no….. This was a great movie and Garry Marshall was hilarious and Penny too…..They call Me Masta… Wait till you see what I’m gonna call ya…. No one else can do that scene,