From Bette Midler’s iconic rendition of “I Put A Spell On You” to Sarah Jessica Parker’s sinister laughter, the original Hocus Pocus has become a bonafide Halloween staple that has resonated with movie-lovers ever since its cinematic debut back in the ‘90s. And with the announcement of the follow-up sequel Hocus Pocus 2 keeping devoted fans intrigued to see which epochal characters make their long-awaited return, one beloved character in particular is more than ready to come face-to-face with the Sanderson sisters once again.
While chatting with Screen Rant, star Doug Jones, who is set to reprise his role as fan-favorite Billy Butcherson in the sequel, discussed the process of creating the follow-up feature. According to Jones, it was the pining from fans for years along with countless depictions of the fantasy film through fan art and fan-made posters that led to the sequel happening at last — and much to the delight of Halloween worshippers around the world.
The fans have been rumbling about it forever. But I was at the 20-year anniversary screening of Hocus Pocus nine years ago at the Disney lot. One of our producers, David Kirschner, was there talking with my makeup artist, Tony Gardner, and they were conversing about the sequel that they were pitching to the studio. That’s when I realized, “Oh, it might actually happen,” and then here we are nine years later, finally. So in the meantime, there’s been a lot of rumors and more fan art with like, “Here’s the poster,” and it’s like, “Wait, someone has really good PhotoShop skills, but that’s not happening yet.” [Laughs].
So finally, to have a call from Ralph Winter, our producer that was our feet-on-the-ground producer from the first movie, him him call me back and say, “Hey, we are back and they want you back, and here’s the deal.” I anticipated and hoped, but never thought like, you never expect like that I’m gonna get to reprise the role that I loved playing 29 years later, it was a lovely surprise and very nostalgic.
Through scheduling conflicts and delayed progress, the sequel is finally flying into the homes of eagle–eyed Halloween enthusiasts that have been waiting decades for a continuation. And, seeing as Jones revealed in a recent interview that his character has much more to accomplish in the sequel, folks can undoubtedly expect a wild adventure that reintroduces us to the memorable characters that helped to shape our childhood experiences with Halloween, magic, and of course — witches.
Hang onto your broomsticks when Hocus Pocus 2 arrives on Disney Plus on Sept. 30.