Original Thackery Binx voice actor not returning as black cat for Hocus Pocus 2
A cat seemingly got voice actor Jason Marsden's tongue ahead of Hocus Pocus 2.
The performer, who voiced the feline version of Thackery Binx — a 17th-century victim of the Sanderson Sisters cursed to live forever as a black cat — will not return for the Disney sequel, a source close to the actor tells EW exclusively. (Disney did not immediately respond to EW's request for confirmation.)
Though Thackery's curse was broken (and his ghostly form reunited with his sister in the afterlife) when the witches were defeated at the end of the first film, fan speculation ran wild Tuesday morning after a black cat appeared in the film's teaser trailer. The cat looked eerily similar to the creature that accompanied Max (Omri Katz), Dani (Thora Birch), and Allison (Vinessa Shaw) as they battled the nefarious witches (Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, Kathy Najimy) through Salem after unwittingly resurrecting them from the dead on Halloween night.
EW previously confirmed that Birch would also not reprise her role as an adult version of Dani due to filming conflicts. A source said that the original script had a "good supporting role" for Birch, who, if all had gone according to plan, would've worked to help three modern-day teens (Gossip Girl's Whitney Peak, Dirt's Lilia Buckingham, American Horror Stories' Belissa Escobedo) with their attempts to halt the Sanderson Sisters upon their second resurrection — this time in modern-day Salem.
Alongside Midler, Parker, and Najimy, original Hocus Pocus actor Doug Jones also returned for the sequel in the role of Billy Butcherson, Winifred's zombified ex-lover, with series newcomers like Ted Lasso Emmy-winner Hannah Waddingham and Veep alums Tony Hale and Sam Richardson also boarding the ensemble.
"I am beyond thrilled to be involved in the sequel to a film that is as beloved as Hocus Pocus," Fletcher said last year in a statement about the upcoming project. "Fans around the world have embraced these characters and have made this film a Halloween tradition whose popularity continues to grow, and how lucky am I to be back at Disney with these three extraordinarily talented ladies in the iconic roles they created, as well as our fabulous new additions to the cast?"
Hocus Pocus 2, directed by Anne Fletcher, premieres Sept. 30 on Disney+. Watch the new trailer above.
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