The sprawling grounds of Los Angeles' Hollywood Forever Cemetery provided the ideal atmosphere for a screening of Fox's "Sleepy Hollow" Monday night, part of an attention-grabbing For Your Consideration campaign that saw gangs of Headless Horsemen descend on media outlets throughout the city to "terrorize" staffers with photo ops and sweet treats.
The Headless Horsemen have taken over the @Variety offices. #SleepyHollowFYC pic.twitter.com/nh8bam8g24
June 2, 2014
Stars Tom Mison (Ichabod Crane) and Nicole Beharie (Abbie Mills) were joined by executive producers Roberto Orci, Len Wiseman, Heather Kadin and Mark Goffman for a Q&A at the cemetery's towering Masonic Lodge, and while they kept things pretty cryptic inside the crypt, the team behind one of last season's rare success stories was happy to drop some hints about season two on the red carpet.
When asked to sum up the season-two premiere in three words, the dapper Mison bashfully admitted, "All I can think of are swear words!"
Ever the loyal partner, Beharie cautioned, "You can't do that, your mom would be really upset with you."
"She'd be furious," Mison agreed, before settling on the suitably enigmatic descriptor of "trust."
Beharie offered one hint -- "explosive" -- and one piece of sound advice: "Buckle up."
For fans who were left on the edge of their seats by January's season-one finale, Mison had some words of reassurance: "The great thing is, the second season starts exactly at the moment the finale left off, so all of the pace that's been building up through the last 13 episodes, it's just straight in. We're hitting the ground running, so there's no time for Ichabod or Abbie to sit back and consider what's happened."
Just as well, since the twist-laden finale left Ichabod buried alive while his wife, Katrina (Katia Winter), was handed over to the Headless Horseman by the couple's scorned son, Jeremy (John Noble) -- who revealed himself to be the second Horseman of the Apocalypse, War.
Abbie, meanwhile, was left trapped in Purgatory and at the mercy of the demonic Moloch, and Beharie told Variety that the skeptical police lieutenant will struggle with her "creepy" new surroundings in season two.
She's "a little terrified -- Purgatory is challenging, that's the whole idea," she pointed out. "Every story you hear about it is that it's going to try you and challenge you and play with your mind. It's interesting how she deals with it."
Season two is set to expand the town of Sleepy Hollow with new characters, but Beharie promised that the 18-episode second year will also feature "more family stuff for everyone -- you'll see where (Abbie) comes from and why she's a Witness as well."
Executive producer Mark Goffman agreed, "There's a big surprise in the premiere that (Abbie) comes to in Purgatory, and that's going to play out throughout the entire season. We're really going to get to understand her past a lot more. (We'll see more of) the family dynamic as they try to understand her role as a Witness; what exactly happened to (Abbie and her sister, Jenny); how you become a Witness; and what that really means. She takes it very seriously."
Speaking of new characters, the executive producers had nothing but praise for Timothy Busfield's portrayal of season-two addition Benjamin Franklin.
"When we saw him come out in the makeup and the whole getup, it was thrilling to me -- he was such a fantastic Franklin," Len Wiseman enthused. "It was eerie, he really did impress us. We were running around showing the photo to everybody on set."
Goffman concurred, "We wanted to come up with a Franklin that had never really been portrayed before on television, and this one has a level of irreverence and brilliance and smarts -- his relationship with Crane is going to be something that's memorable and a lot of fun to watch. This is a person who was responsible for so much of the founding of our country and so many inventions that we take for granted; there's many seasons worth of stories to unwind in how he played a role in the Revolution and his relationship with Crane."
Another new face this season comes in the form of Matt Barr, who will play a bounty hunter in the troubled town. "He's doing a five-to-seven episode arc. We had to open up the town since we're doing more episodes, and he's going to be an antiquities dealer who Jenny (Lyndie Greenwood) used to go to for help finding things," Heather Kadin teased.
Roberto Orci added, "He's one of the people who knows a little bit of the things that are happening in this world, so he's someone with whom they can share some of the things you can't talk to anyone else about." Expect sparks to fly between Barr's Nick Hawley and both Mills sisters.