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THEN AND NOW: The cast of 'Hocus Pocus' 28 years later

Insider
Insider
 2021-10-20

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Bette Midler in the 1993 movie "Hocus Pocus" and in 2019.
When "Hocus Pocus" first hit theaters in 1993, it was neither a commercial nor critical success.
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Kathy Najimy, Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker in "Hocus Pocus."

The film follows the Sanderson sisters, a trio of evil witches who are accidentally resurrected on Halloween night in Salem, Massachusetts, and the rag-tag group who tries to finish them off once and for all.

In the years since, " Hocus Pocus " has become a Halloween cult classic, so much so that Bette Midler, Kathy Najimy, and Sarah Jessica Parker have all signed on for a sequel on Disney Plus , which will be released in fall 2022.

Here's what the original cast of " Hocus Pocus " is up to now.

Bette Midler starred as the Sanderson sisters' ringleader, Winifred "Winnie" Sanderson.
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Bette Midler in "Hocus Pocus."

Midler put her singing skills to use when her character performed a version of "I Put A Spell On You" with spooky lyrics such as "It's been 300 years, right down to the day / Now the witch is back and there's hell to pay."

Midler is still riding high as an award-winning actress, singer, author, and comedian.
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Bette Midler at an event in 2019.

She has recently starred in "Hello, Dolly!" on Broadway (for which she won her second Tony), "The Politician" on Netflix, and the Gloria Steinem biopic "The Glorias."

She'll start filming for "Hocus Pocus 2" with her fellow stars this fall. They were all immediately onboard when they saw the plot, she said.

"They presented us with an outline, and after we picked ourselves up off the floor, because it's been 27 years, we looked at it and I think all of us agreed that it was pretty great," she told People in October 2020.

Sarah Jessica Parker played Sarah Sanderson, who hypnotizes children with her enchanting voice.
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Sarah Jessica Parker in "Hocus Pocus."

Sarah Sanderson isn't the brightest of the bunch, but she manages to lure all of the children in Salem to their house by singing a hypnotizing song called "Come Little Children."

Parker went on to star in "Sex and the City" and its subsequent film adaptations and founded her own production company in 2005.
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Sarah Jessica Parker.

Parker's role in the HBO show "Divorce" earned her a Golden Globe nomination .

She is currently filming " And Just Like That... ," a revival of " Sex and the City " that will come out in December, before starting on "Hocus Pocus 2."

She shared a teaser photo for the sequel on Instagram in May, writing: "Yep. I'm ready. To run. Amok, amok, amok, amok. [candle emoji] #HocusPocus2 arrives Fall 2022 on @disneyplus Sisters??? X, SJ."

Kathy Najimy played Mary Sanderson, the Sanderson sister with a talent for sniffing out children.
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Kathy Najimy in "Hocus Pocus."

Before " Hocus Pocus ," Najimy played Sister Mary Patrick in "Sister Act" alongside Whoopi Goldberg.

Najimy has since appeared in a wide array of movies and TV shows, including "Rat Race," "The Guilt Trip," "BoJack Horseman," and "Crazy Ex-Girlfriend."
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Kathy Najimy in 2019.

She has most recently starred in " Veep " and " The Rocketeer " and appeared in " Robot Chicken ," " Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles ," " Duncanville ," and " American Dad !"

She also shared a teaser photo for "Hocus Pocus 2" in May, writing: "The people have spoken: I smell children...again."

Omri Katz played the protagonist of "Hocus Pocus," Max Dennison.
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Omri Katz in "Hocus Pocus."

In the film, Dennison lights the cursed Black Flame Candle on Halloween night that brings the Sanderson sisters back from the dead.

Before the movie, he'd also appeared in shows including " Eerie, Indiana " and "Dallas."

Katz retired from acting and works as a hairstylist in Los Angeles.
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Omri Katz in 2018.

Before an appearance on " Eerie, Indiana " in 2018, Katz's most recent acting role was in a 2002 short film called " Journey Into Night ."

Even though he left Hollywood behind, he still made an appearance for a Freeform special in honor of the 25th anniversary of " Hocus Pocus " in 2018.

He's also kept in touch with some of his costars, celebrating Halloween with two of them in 2015.

Thora Birch played Max's fearless younger sister, Dani.
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Thora Birch in "Hocus Pocus."

Birch, a '90s child star, was 11 years old when " Hocus Pocus " came out.

Birch has continued to act, most recently appearing in "The Walking Dead."
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Thora Birch in 2019.

Throughout the '90s, Birch starred in multiple movies, including " Now and Then ," " Monkey Trouble ," and, when she was 17, " American Beauty ."

More recently, Birch has appeared in movies such as " Above Suspicion ," " Kindred Spirits ," " The Last Black Man in San Francisco ," and " Affairs of State ."

The character of Allison was played by Vinessa Shaw.
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Vinessa Shaw in "Hocus Pocus."

Allison's mother used to run the museum built in the Sanderson sisters' old cottage in Salem. She brings Max and Dani there, where Max lights the Black Flame Candle and resurrects the fearsome witches.

Shaw has continued acting, appearing in movies including "Eyes Wide Shut," "40 Days and 40 Nights," and "The Hills Have Eyes."
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Vinessa Shaw in 2015.

She most recently starred in 2021's " 12 Mighty Orphans " and " We Need to Do Something ," which she also co-executive produced.

She told Entertainment Tonight in October 2021 that she hasn't been asked to be involved in the " Hocus Pocus " sequel.

"I haven't heard anything," she said. "I know, it's so disappointing. I would love to do the sequel. It would be so much fun. I think there's just a different storyline with younger people, but why can't we all come back in some way?"

Stephanie Faracy played Max and Dani's mother, Jenny.
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Stephanie Faracy in "Hocus Pocus."

Jenny dresses up as Madonna for a Halloween party.

Faracy also continues to act and recently appeared in the TV shows "Sneaky Pete," "How to Get Away with Murder," and "Devious Maids."
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Stephanie Faracy in 2018.

Faracy also starred in " Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates " alongside Zac Efron, Adam Devine, Anna Kendrick, and Aubrey Plaza.

Doug Jones played the undead William "Billy" Butcherson, Winifred Sanderson's ex-boyfriend whom she resurrects to help retrieve her spell book.
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Doug Jones in "Hocus Pocus."

Spoiler alert!

In the end, Butcherson helps Max, Dani, and Allison defeat the Sanderson sisters and returns to his grave to sleep in peace. Jones used his training as a mime and contortionist to make the zombie-like character more humorous than horrifying .

Jones still works in acting, often playing aliens or other non-human species with the help of makeup and special effects.
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Doug Jones in 2018.

Jones has appeared in films like " Hellboy ," " Crimson Peak ," and " The Shape of Water ," but he wrote on Twitter that "Playing Billy in HOCUS POCUS was a highlight in my life and career."

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