Tom Mison on ‘Sleepy Hollow’ Season 2

Tom Mison

Since “Sleepy Hollow” ended its first season early this year, we have been waiting a long time to see what happens to Ichabod Crane. Fortunately, Fox renewed the series early so we knew we wouldn’t be left hanging. At the Television Critics Association Press Tour, Tom Mison met with the press to discuss the show’s second season. We were there to ask him what’s coming up.

 

CraveOnline: How relieved were you to get the second season and know you were in it for the long haul?

Tom Mison: Really relieved. It’s the rare type of show that I think can remain exciting for a very, very long time. So to know that we have another 18 hours to explore the characters and the very situations that it can be in, of course, it’s a treat. It’s a character that I don’t think I’ll get bored of playing and there are so many new levels to him that we can unpeel. It’s a treat.

I first learned about shipping from “Sleepy Hollow” shippers.

Really?

Yeah, does it amaze you all the ships they have for “Sleepy Hollow?”

I love it. It shows that people are invested in the characters and the direction that we’re going. Yes, it’s new for me too. I had no idea what shipping was, but I’m pleased that people are shipping.

is the action ramped up for you this season?

Yeah, I don’t think the action will ever stop which is why, hopefully, the show won’t be going on into my 40s or I’ll be exhausted.

Do you know where season two is heading?

Mark Goffman and I talk regularly about the new arcs that are coming up and the new individual episodic stories. Also he’s told me what the finale is and my jaw hit the ground even harder than when he told me the finale of last year. So we’re still involved and we talk a lot.

Is Phillip Iscove still involved?

Yes, he’s still on the writing team. He can’t be here today. He’s chained to his computer to write his episode.

Are you bringing your coat back?

Well, I went into the ground with it. I’m sure I’ll come out with it. At the end of last season, Crane stumbled onto a re-enactment and met a girl who makes 18th century clothes. So Crane picked up a few new bits there and we might see her again in this season more. The uniform, that’s the only bit from home that he has and I don’t think he has the will to get rid of home entirely. No, he’s going to hold onto those things.

Did you ever see the Johnny Depp Sleepy Hollow movie?

I saw it in the cinema. I went on a date to see it. It ended really badly. I sat on a fruit pastel. That’s all I remember of that date. That was a weird thing to say, but it’s one of my favorite Johnny Depp/Tim Burton collaborations. I loved it, which is why when I got the e-mail saying “Sleepy Hollow TV show,” before I read it I was tentative just because everyone knows Sleepy Hollow. Even if you haven’t read the book, lots of people have seen the film. Even if you haven’t seen the film, you still know there’s a headless horseman and you have an idea what it is. I think quite quickly, we showed that we’re not a TV show of the film, or indeed of the book,.

How has your perception of Ichabod Crane changed over the course of the first season?

There are so many layers to it and the writers keep adding more layers and peeling away more layers. It still fits really nicely, to use a very pretentious actor term. When you first read a script, I heard the voice and I saw the mannerisms and that you only really get with good writing. And it’s nice to know that still, after nearly 20 episodes last season and this that we’ve been shooting, it still fits well. It’s still the same voice that I heard in the pilot but now it’s just louder. It’s growing more. They approach everything from the character’s point of view. They don’t sit around and say, “Oh, what monster should we have this week?” It’s always what affect do we want on the characters and then what creature will best show that. So yes, Crane’s growing and continues to.

Do people not recognize you in real life because of the wig and all you wear on the show?

No, I don’t get recognized at all. I still in fact get people in pubs in Wilmington talking about the show, and I’m sitting right next to them. Because I don’t have a wig, they don’t realize it.

Is it good to maintain some of that anonymity?

It’s really nice and also, the one thing that actors love, they love to have words like chameleon thrown at them. So that’s a word that I’ve been reading a lot when people are talking about me in the show so I’m just pleased with that. And a character part. You don’t often get 100% “character” parts. That’s something that I’m relishing.

Has “Sleepy Hollow” been seen in London?

Yeah, it’s on the Universal channel in England. I think it’s got a certain British humor to it. The level of irony in a lot of the performances I think is very British. In fact, Len and I discussed that during my audition when we were talking about why they made Crane English. It turns out that when they were writing it, they realized the dialogue had a lot of English humor.

Do your friends say, “How can you do that many episodes of a TV series?”

Well, yeah. In England, they’re usually maybe eight episodes. The most I’ve done is six I think. It’s nice to get to explore for longer, but yes, they’re all wondering whether I’ll come home at all.

How Americanized have you gotten?

Gotten? In England we say, “How Americanized have I got?” or “Become.” I’m still refusing to say “y’all.” In North Carolina, everyone’s y’alling. The one thing about playing a very, very English part is that I can’t lose my roots.

What do you like about living in the States?

In Wilmington, for example, I’m living on the beach. I wouldn’t go swimming at six in the morning in England.

Is going from London to Wilmington different than London to L.A.?

That was genuinely a huge culture shock, even more than going Tokyo a few years ago. It’s vastly different but it’s very nice. It’s nice to get a different pace of life. I’m enjoying Wilmington.

Did you do anything on your hiatus?

I went home and I decided to use this hiatus to prepare for 18 episodes, and then hopefully working in the next hiatus and then another season after that. Last season took a lot. We took a battering. It’s physically and emotionally draining doing this show, so I knew that I needed to prepare myself nor only physically, get in better shape, but just mentally prepare myself for more of it.