Hocus Pocus 2 Just Broke A Disney Record

Hocus Pocus 2 is the most streamed premiere movie on Disney+.

By Jessica Marie Baumgartner | Published

The Disney sequel Hocus Pocus 2 has created such a buzz that it is the Disney+ streaming service’s most viewed premiere to date. Just exactly what those numbers have yet to be released. But despite this record-breaking release, it has received mixed reviews, leaving audiences less than satisfied when comparing the new installment to the original. 

The Hocus Pocus 2 premier came just as the Halloween season kicks off. Designed to ride on the success of the original, this new installment brought back the infamous Sanderson sisters. Played by Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Kathy Najimy, other new characters have also been written into the modern script. 

hocus pocus 2

By breaking Disney’s streaming debut record, Hocus Pocus 2 is being hailed a success, but many critics are questioning the movie’s re-viewing potential. While some critics claim that this is merely a retread of the first and that it ruins a childhood classic, others say to enjoy it for what it is and that it offers up a fun Halloween feel. At the time of this article, there were no actual verified audience scores, and the few unverified ones had just as broad of a range as the critic scores. 

This has led to 54% score on Rotten Tomatoes, and 62% on the critic’s Tomatometer. How those reviews will change as more people tune in depends on the quality, content, and vibe that Hocus Pocus 2 truly gives off. It will remain to be seen whether the sequel has the same longevity with families as the original.

Hocus Pocus 2 was directed by Anne Fletcher (known for Step Up and 27 Dresses) and written by Jen D’Angelo from a story by her, David Kirschner, and Jen D’Angelo. This time around, the youthful protagonists trying to foil the Sanderson Sisters are played by Whitney Peak and Belissa Escobedo, who accidentally resurrect the witches via a magic candle. Additionally, Doug Jones returns as reluctant zombie Billy Butcherson, with the new additions of Sam Richardson and Tony Hale.

Hocus Pocus 2 hits many of the same story beats as the original, but with more of an emphasis on the Sanderson Sisters’ own origin in 17th-century Salem. It will remain to be seen whether a future sequel might reveal even more about their lives.

What is known is that Hocus Pocus is a beloved family classic. Fans everywhere have revisited Max’s fight against the Sanderson witches to protect his little sister Dani, for decades now. It appealed to various audiences because it offered a fresh take on the hero’s journey, sibling rivalry topped with sibling love, as well as fun historical fiction fantasy that has yet to be described in the Hocus Pocus 2 trailer, reviews, or descriptions. 

The Sanderson Sisters have been widely popular allowing for mass sales of memorabilia, from pillows to coffee mugs and beyond, the 3 witches left audiences hungry for more. Unfortunately, it has yet to be determined if basing an entire movie around them, instead of more relatable characters with more in-depth storylines, has the same staying power that the original surprisingly delivered. For now, Hocus Pocus 2 has offered Disney the promise of a new success.