It just took a virgin, a lighter and a Black Flame Candle to bring back the Sanderson Sisters from the dead, then POOF! — Hocus Pocus was on its way to becoming a cult classic for Disney. Directed by Kenny Ortega, the 1993 fantasy film starred Bette Midler, Kathy Najimy and Sarah Jessica Parker as three dopey 17th century Salem witches (aka the Sanderson Sisters) who suck the life forces of children to stay young. Fast forward 300 years later to 1993, and the Sanderson Sisters are accidentally resurrected from the dead on Halloween, thanks to a tie-dyed hippie teen named Max who's accompanied by his little sister and the girl of his dreams, Allison. The three of them, along with immortal talking black cat Thackery, take on the witches and their evil spells to save the town of Salem.
Although Hocus Pocus wasn't a big box office draw and was panned by critics, the film managed to take on a second life — just like the Sanderson Sisters. Over time it gained cult status. To celebrate the 25th anniversary of the flick, let's check out where the cast members are today.
Bette Midler (Winnie Sanderson)
After portraying bucktoothed witch Winnie — the eldest Sanderson Sister and the only one with a brain — Bette Midler continued being the major multi-hyphenate star that she is. With multiple Golden Globes, Emmys, Grammys, and a Tony to her name, Midler continued her winning streak post-Hocus Pocus with memorable films like The First Wives Club (1996) and Parental Guidance (2012). On television she had an Emmy-winning turn as a guest star on Murphy Brown in 1998 and over the years, has produced a variety of studio albums and headlined a slew of concert tours. In fact, Midler dressed as her witch character on her Divine Intervention Tour in 2015, singing "I Put a Spell on You," a track from the movie. Most recently, Midler received a Tony Award for her work on Broadway's revival of Hello, Dolly!.
Kathy Najimy (Mary Sanderson)
After saying "sorry" a million times with her crooked mouth and sniffing out children as middle sister Mary Sanderson, Kathy Najimy has found continued success in film and television. Since Hocus Pocus, she's starred in Rat Race (2001), Disney's Descendants (2015) and has lent her voice to a variety of animation projects including Stuart Little: The Animated Series, WALL-E, and King of the Hill. On the small screen, Najimy has starred on Ellen, Chicago Hope, Veronica's Closet, The Big C, Veep, and many more. She's also worked on stage, appearing as Mae West on Broadway's Dirty Blonde.
Sarah Jessica Parker (Sarah Sanderson)
Playing Sarah Sanderson, the youngest sister witch who loves to hop around, eat spiders and flirt with mortal men, Sarah Jessica Parker has come a long way from being typecast as a dumb blonde. Besides her most famous role as Carrie Bradshaw on Sex and the City, Parker has had an impressive array of film credits to her name, including Ed Wood (1994), The First Wives Club (1996), The Family Stone (2005), and Did You Hear About the Morgans? (2009). In 2008 and 2010, she reprised her role as Carrie for two Sex and the City films and more recently, starred and and executive produced the comedy drama Divorce. Outside of acting, Parker is also known for her famous marriage to Matthew Broderick and for being a style icon.
Omri Katz (Max Dennison)
As Max Dennison, the arrogant L.A. teen transplant who becomes the story's virgin hero, Omri Katz didn't have a prolonged acting career after Hocus Pocus. The Los Angeles native appeared in a recurring role on The John Larroquette Show and portrayed John Ross Ewing III on Dallas and its subsequent TV films that were produced in the mid 90s. Katz retired from acting in 2002.
Thora Birch (Dani Dennison)
The cherubic face of Max's little bratty sis, Dani Dennison, is one that's hard to forget, and we can thank Thora Birch for that. After appearing in films like Patriot Games (1994), Now and Then (1995), and a starring role in the sibling adventure drama Alaska (1996), Birch made her star turn in American Beauty, opposite Kevin Spacey, in 1999. Two years later, she starred in the black comedy Ghost World with Scarlett Johansson and Steve Buscemi and worked on the TV movie Homeless to Harvard: The Liz Murray Story (2003), which earned her an Emmy nod. She found continued success on the small screen, starring in the 2010 Lifetime movie The Pregnancy Pact. Taking breaks in between her career, Birch has now focused on independent film projects including Petunia (2012) and The Etruscan Smile (2018) and also has a role on the TV show Colony. She is set to star in the film adaptation of The Last Black Man in San Francisco with Danny Glover.
Vinessa Shaw (Allison Watts)
Cast as Allison Watts, the rich Salem girl of Max's dreams who helps take down the Sanderson Sisters (remember her dramatic salt scene!), Vinessa Shaw has continued expanding her acting career after her breakthrough role in Hocus Pocus. She appeared in Stanley Kubrick's Eyes Wide Shut (1999), The Weight of Water (2000), Corky Romano (2001), 40 Days and 40 Nights (2002), and The Hills Have Eyes (2006). In 2007 she starred opposite Christian Bale and Russell Crowe in the western drama 3:10 to Yuma and also had a leading role in the romantic drama Two Lovers. More recently, she's held a supporting role in Ray Donovan and starred in the horror film Clinical. A longtime practicing Buddhist, Shaw just became a mother for the first time in early 2018.