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- American film director and screenwriter
Now that we've all had a sufficient amount of time to process the fact that Hocus Pocus is getting an unnecessary remake, we have another fact about the beloved Halloween flick for you to chew on: the Hocus Pocus we know and love was almost a much, much darker movie. While sitting down with Entertainment Weekly, Mick Garris - who wrote the first draft of the movie's script in the 1980s - revealed the original conceit for the story about the Sanderson sisters was called Halloween House and wasn't nearly as family friendly.
"What I had written originally was about 12-year-olds," he told EW. "The kids being younger and in more jeopardy was certainly something more explicitly frightening." He further explained that the movie eventually became more "broadly comedic," adding in scenes like the devil one with Garry and Penny Marshall. Poor Billy Butcherson, however, was always going to lose his head (as if those lips weren't bad enough . . .).
What's even more interesting is that the movie nearly had Stephen Spielberg attached as director because the Hollywood legend fell in love with the broad idea. "He loved it until he found out that Disney was already involved," Garris said. "At that time, Disney and Amblin were very competitive in the family-film market, so neither of them wanted to be in business with the other." Garris went on to write the first script, and after a few tweaks, the rest is Halloween history.