Sleepy Hollow script
Sleepy Hollow (1999)
Synopsis: Ichabod Crane awakes from the throes of death 250 years in the future where he must solve a mystery dating back to the founding fathers. Due to a blood spell cast on a battlefield during the Revolution, the infamous headless horseman is revived along with Crane, and the murderous rider embarks on a bloody rampage in present-day Sleepy Hollow. Ichabod realizes that he must act quickly, for the headless horseman is only the first of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. Detective Abbie Mills, a woman familiar with supernatural experiences, forms a bond with Crane as they try to stop an increasingly vicious cycle of evil.

EXT. GNARLED FOREST -- NIGHT

An UGLY MAN charges through on a horse, holding a lantern

forward on a long pole. He looks back, terrified.

INSERT TITLE:
1799 Sleepy Hollow, New York

THUNDEROUS HOOFBEATS are HEARD behind.

The ugly man glances back again. His lantern swings wild...

SHATTERS against a tree. The jammed-up pole SLAMS the ugly

man off his horse...

He hits the ground. He runs, trips, falls and scrambles up.

DEEP IN THE FOREST, we glimpse the source of the HOOFBEATS: a

HUGE FORM on a HUGE BLACK HORSE, already gone.

The ugly man pushes through thorny bushes. Jagged branches

slit his hands and cheeks.

He bursts from the briar patch and tumbles to a trail. He

lifts his bloodied face. He runs.

IN THE FOREST BEHIND: the hooves of the black horse rip

underbrush. HOOFBEATS DEAFENING. A spur digs into the

snorting steed's already bleeding flank.

The pursuer's gloved hand draws a SWORD, blade RINGING.

ON THE TRAIL, the ugly man runs on. The shrill WHISTLE of a

SWORD SWING is HEARD as the pursuer blurs past.

The ugly man is still running when his head lolls back, at an

impossible angle... tumbles off his shoulders... His headless

body hits the dirt.

EXT. CITY STREETS -- NIGHT

Empty cobblestone streets. Crooked buildings. A RAPIDLY

CLANGING BELL breaks the silence from afar.

INSERT TITLE:
New York City

TWO CONSTABLES clamor round a corner, lanterns held high,

listening. They rush into an alleyway.

ELSEWHERE, piers border the Hudson River. The BELL is

LOUDER. The two constables arrive, searching. No one around.

Constable One hefts his pistol, scared.

CONSTABLE ONE:

Where are you?!

MAN'S VOICE (o.s.)

Here! Over here!

They hurry to the river's edge. Down a hill, the MAN,

another constable, stands with his back to us. He's waist

deep in water, tossing away his ALARM BELL.

MAN:

I need your help with this.

Constable Two crosses on the peir above. Constable One moves

forward, wary. The MAN grunts, lifting something.

CONSTABLE ONE:

Constable Crane? Ichabod Crane...

is that you?

The MAN turns. Meet ICHABOD CRANE, handsome, eyes piercing.

ICHABOD:

Yes, it is me. But, not only me...

(lifting, struggling)

I found someone here...

He drags a bloated MALE CORPSE up from the murky water.

ICHABOD:

Someone quite dead.

EXT. WATCHHOUSE/JAIL -- NIGHT

The elderly HIGH CONSTABLE lifts a blanket off the corpse on

a wheelbarrow manned by Constable Two. A snobby MAGISTRATE

looks, disgusted. Constable One and Ichabod wait.

HIGH CONSTABLE:

Burn it.

CONSTABLE ONE:

Yes, sir.

Constable Two wheels the corpse inside. Ichabod's dismayed.

ICHABOD:

Just a moment... if I may. It is

possible this man was murdered.

HIGH CONSTABLE:

He drowned. Anyone could see.

ICHABOD:

There are surgical ways of telling

how he died... by the water in his

lungs...

Ichabod follows the High Constable and Magistrate in.

INT. WATCHHOUSE, NIGHT WATCH QUARTERS -- NIGHT

Constable Two wheels the body ahead past many "booking"

tables. A JAILER moves to unlock a massive door.

HIGH CONSTABLE:

He will be burned pursuant to

statutes of health.

ICHABOD:

I could determine if he were dead

before he went into the Hudson.

HIGH CONSTABLE:

Must we again hear these heretical

rantings?

MAGISTRATE:

Yes, must we?

ICHABOD:

There is nothing heretical about

science, sir. The Chinese have

written on it for hundreds of

years... procedural study used to

solve seemingly unsolvable crimes.

The door is opened. The corpse again leads the way.

INT. WATCHHOUSE, JAIL -- NIGHT

A two-tiered prison, alive with MOANS of AGONY and CRIES of

INSANITY. Cells are full of wretched men in chains and iron

gags. Many are against the bars, watching.

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Andrew Kevin Walker

Andrew Kevin Walker (born August 14, 1964) is an American BAFTA-nominated screenwriter. He is known for having written Seven (1995), for which he earned a nomination for the BAFTA Award for Best Original Screenplay, as well as several other films, including 8mm (1999), Sleepy Hollow (1999) and many uncredited script rewrites. more…

All Andrew Kevin Walker scripts | Andrew Kevin Walker Books

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