‘Hocus Pocus’: 20 Things You Didn’t Know About the Halloween Classic

by Jacklyn Krol
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Get ready to get spooky and learn 20 fun facts about Hocus Pocus.

All About Hocus Pocus

Writer David Kirschner came up with a bedtime story for his daughter and Hocus Pocus was born. He submitted the story to Muppet Magazine where it gained momentum. It was later adapted into a movie and originally titled, Disney’s Halloween House.

After the movie became a cult classic amongst Halloween and Disney lovers, fans began to inquire about the filming process. The actor who portrayed Billy had real live moths in his mouth.

In an interview with Bloody Disgusting, makeup FX artist Tony Gardner revealed that he created a mouth rig for Doug Jones. “There was a small hole in the very back of the pocket so that Doug could cough some air through it and force the fuller’s earth and the mouths up and out of his mouth,” he said. “Once the pocket was loaded with the Fuller’s earth, an animal wrangler would place several moths in the pocket with tweezers, under the supervision of a representative from the Humane Society.”

Originally, Hocus Pocus was released in July of 1993, prior to Halloween. It did not become an instant classic. It opened at No. 4 in the box office with $8,125,471 grossed.

There were multiple cats who portrayed Binx. The children who had to work with them did not care for the process of earning the trust of different cats.

Casting

Originally, neither Omri Katz nor Kathy Najimy was cast in the film. The role of Max Denison was offered to Leonardo DiCaprio while the role of Mary Sanderson was offered to Rosie O’Donnell.

Sean Murray, who portrayed Thackery Binx only portrayed the human-version. Jason Marsden voiced the cat Binx.

“Satan” and his wife were portrayed by Garry Marshall and Penny Marshall, who are actually brother and sister in real life.

Flaws in the Movie

There were countless details that did not fit with the time period or minor mistakes in the film. One of the most prominent mistakes was when Winifred was chasing Max on her broom and she asked to see his driver’s permit. Prior to this, we knew she did not know what a road was so she could not have known what a permit or driving is.

Another minute detail was the fact that the Sandersons’ referred to baking with margarine. The trio died in 1693 and were later resurrected hundreds of years later. Margarine wasn’t invented until 1813 and became a substitute for butter in 1869.

The movie itself takes place on Hallow’s Eve night in 1993. That night specifically was on a Sunday that did not have a full moon, as the plot says.

Another minor mistake is that if you look closely, you can see wires on Mary and Sarah’s brooms.

Finally, when Max lit the black flame candle, he used a Zippo lighter from the gift shop. However, since the museum was vacated years prior, the lighter fluid would have likely evaporated, unable to light a candle.

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