Fans were elated to find out that Hocus Pocus, the family comedy that has become improbably popular with nostalgic audiences in 2020, was getting a sequel on Disney’s Disney+ streaming service. Now Variety reports its sources claim the film has found its director: Adam Shankman, who previously helmed projects like the Hairspray musical, The Pacifier, Bedtime Stories, Rock of Ages, and, most recently, What Men Want. (The original Hocus Pocus was directed by Kenny Ortega.)

Maybe the most important part of Variety’s report — and perhaps the most concerning — is their note that the “original “Hocus Pocus” cast members [Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Kathy Najimy] are not attached to the sequel, but Disney is hopeful that they will become involved in some capacity.” Supposedly the goal is for “the trio of actresses will reprise their roles, rather than having to completely reboot the first film.” But if the actors aren’t signed on that could be rather tricky.

The original film, released in 1993 to so-so box office and reviews, follows a trio of witches from 1600s Salem resurrected in the present day. Endless repeats on cable have turned it into a popular hit with a whole generation of young adults raised on the movie. And presumably those are the folks (and, in some cases, their kids) who would be targeted by the sequel, which is based on a script by Jen D’Angelo. We’ll see how interested people are if they can’t coax Midler, Parker, and Najimy into returning though.

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