See first look at RuPaul's Drag Race trio as the Sanderson Sisters in Hocus Pocus 2
A coven of witches — even one as iconic as the Sanderson Sisters — is only as powerful as the trio of drag queens standing behind them, and EW has an exclusive first look at the (calming) circle of RuPaul's Drag Race alums set to enchant Hocus Pocus 2.
The Anne Fletcher-directed sequel to Disney's 1993 Halloween classic resurrects 370-year-old sorceresses Winifred (Bette Midler), Sarah (Sarah Jessica Parker), and Mary (Kathy Najimy) for another reign of terror in contemporary Salem, but they've saved room for both fear and frolic this spooky season as they take the stage to perform a musical number alongside Drag Race queens Ginger Minj, Kahmora Hall, and Kornbread "The Snack" Jeté — all of whom transform into drag versions of the Sandersons for the show.
"Everybody who's ever been anywhere in the world where there's a Sanderson Sister impersonator, knows that drag queens tend to do it frequently, and they tend to do it best," Ginger tells EW of impersonating the legendary witches.
"We've been keeping the spirit of these characters alive for how many decades now, every Halloween!" Kahmora chimes in. "We're helping to keep this movie and these characters alive, and it was an honor to be part of it."
Hocus Pocus 2 premieres Sept. 30 on Disney+. See EW's exclusive first look at Ginger, Kornbread, and Kahmora in the film above, as well as our roundtable interview with the queens. Read on for highlights (including timestamps) from the conversation.
1:35 — The gals had "a few" paranormal experiences on set, according to Ginger, who found an app that tracks ghostly activities happening around the user. "We don't know [the ghosts] personally, although someone in the costume department had one on their back," Kornbread adds. "It was following this particular person around."
3:07 — Fletcher previously directed Ginger's significant supporting role in the 2018 Netflix comedy Dumplin', and contacted the Drag Race alum to cast her in Hocus Pocus 2 while the queen was playing Ursula in a Halloween tour in Europe. "She said, 'I trust you. I want you to find me a couple of your sisters that would fit with you in this project,' so I got to give them a list of names and they chose these two from that," Ginger recalls.
3:48 — Kornbread says "it wasn't supposed to be" her in the role of Drag Mary at first. That, she recalls, was originally intended for season 12 winner and All Stars 7 queen Jaida Essence Hall. "[Management] ended up submitting me for it, but we couldn't say anything about me being on Drag Race at the time, so me going to do it was a little bit sneaky because I wasn't supposed to be doing anything before [season 14] was announced," Kornbread says. "When photos leaked [from set, fans knew] who these two were, but I was definitely Silky for a second, Jaidynn Diore Fierce for a second, because no one knew who Kornbread was at the time, so I kind of lucked out in the moment."
4:36 — "I thought I got the wrong email. I was so surprised by it. I had to Google the person emailing me to make sure it was legit," Kahmora recalls, revealing that she made a hilarious request to production before being cast. " Ironically, the same dates they were filming, I had a trip to Disney World planned, and I was like, 'Is there any way we can move the dates, or any flexibility?' and they're like, girl, you're not Bette Midler, we're not changing the dates for you. So I was like, let me reschedule my vacation, no problem."
5:29 — The queens break down their scene, which sees them take the stage at the annual Salem Scarefest, which includes a musical competition for town residents. The trio enters a Sanderson Sisters costume contest and meet their matches when the real siblings show up.
7:54 — Kahmora, who famously bombed the her Drag Race season 13 acting challenge while portraying a tree, still can't recover from her legendarily chaotic line reading back in early 2021. "It was different because unlike Drag Race, I'm not competing with anyone, there was no, 'Oh, if you mess this up, you're going home,' but that would've happened too on set if I messed it up, but it was a lot of fun to have a little role like that. As far as I know, it went well, got no complaints," she says, though Kornbread begs to differ. "I sat with Kahmora all night. We had no monologues, no long moments, me and Kahmora sat up in this hotel going over this one line for hours because she did not know which route she wanted to take. The person you saw on TV is a very real human being," Kornbread jokes. "Kahmora had me up, going over this line, saying it 17,000 ways, and we get to set, she did not do what we did, she did it completely different — which was great, what she did was phenomenal — but it was nothing we practiced!"
10:41 — Ginger praises Curtin Foreman, the Hocus Pocus 2 hair stylist who previously won an Emmy for working on RuPaul's Drag Race.
10:58 — The queens reveal what they did… or… uh… didn't steal from the set. Like, items that definitely aren't locked up in Kornbread's vanity.
12:30 — Ginger replays "the first words out of their mouths" when Midler, Parker, and Najimy saw the queens for the first time in drag on the set. "This was right after All Stars 6, Kathy looks at me and goes, 'Oh my God, you were robbed!' and they talked about Kahmora and her season, and then they look at Kornbread and go, 'Do you want me to call RuPaul and get you on the show?'" Ginger recalls. Kornbread finishes: "I was like, 'Baby, I thank you for the recommendation, but don't you pick up that phone because you're about to get me in trouble, honey, I'm not supposed to be here!"
14:26 — Flying (on robot vacuums, a Swiffer, and, of course, a broom) was the highlight of the shoot for the queens. "It truly was winning the gay lottery. That was the gay lottery, watching them fly," Kahmora remembers.
16:10 — Kahmora praises Disney and Fletcher for including queer artists, as Hocus Pocus has amassed a cult following of drag performers who incorporate it into their acts every fall.
16:57 — Kornbread explains that her favorite memory from the set involved Midler's choice layering of outerwear. "I aspire to be this when I'm an olden actress in my prime, it was freezing, and Bette Midler was like, 'Alright, bring me my jacket,' and her jacket was a very thin Hermes scarf, and it was the most bougiest, most gorgeous thing I've ever seen in my life," she says. "It was freezing, we're out here dying, and she wants this thin-layered Hermes scarf to be draped over her body that's not catching anybody's wind, but in her head it was keeping her warm, and I was obsessed with it."
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