Sleepy Hollow is a 1999 American gothic supernatural horror film directed by Tim Burton. It is a film adaptation loosely based on Washington Irving’s 1820 short story “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow”, and stars Johnny Depp and Christina Ricci, with Miranda Richardson, Michael Gambon, Casper Van Dien, and Jeffrey Jones in supporting roles. The plot follows police constable Ichabod Crane (Depp) sent from New York City to investigate a series of murders in the village of Sleepy Hollow by a mysterious Headless Horseman.
Development began in 1993 at Paramount Pictures, with Kevin Yagher originally set to direct Andrew Kevin Walker’s script as a low-budget slasher film. Disagreements with Paramount resulted in Yagher’s being demoted to prosthetic makeup designer, and Burton was hired to direct in June 1998. Filming took place from November 1998 to May 1999. The film has a 67% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and grossed approximately $207 million worldwide. Sleepy Hollow won the Academy Award for Best Art Direction.
Johnny Depp as Ichabod Crane: His belief in improved methods of justice, new investigative techniques and scientific procedures is resented by his superiors, who dispatch him north to the Hudson Valley and the small town of Sleepy Hollow.
Christina Ricci as Katrina Van Tassel: Ichabod’s love interest and only heir to one of the neighborhood’s richest farmers.
Miranda Richardson as Lady Mary Van Tassel: Wife of Baltus and stepmother of Katrina, who is revealed to be a vengeful witch. She serves as the main antagonist who has enlisted the Headless Horseman to help kill her stepdaughter. Richardson also portrays:
Crone Witch: Lady Van Tassel’s sister.
Marc Pickering as Young Masbath: An orphan who looks towards Ichabod as a father figure after his own father is murdered by the Horseman.
Michael Gambon as Baltus Van Tassel: Katrina’s father. After Peter Van Garret is murdered, he is placed as the leader of the city.
Jeffrey Jones as Reverend Steenwyck: The town priest.
Casper Van Dien as Brom Van Brunt: A strong and arrogant aristocratic man who is somewhat romantically involved with Katrina.
Ian McDiarmid as Dr. Thomas Lancaster: The town doctor and surgeon in the village.
Michael Gough as Notary James Hardenbrook: The town banker and possibly the oldest citizen in the town.