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SLEEPY HOLLOW

Costumes & Special Effects

For "Sleepy Hollow," Atwood's research focused on period paintings and visual descriptions of costumes from books. "There were no existing photographs," comments Atwood, "but since this film is not a history lesson, the work becomes very impressionistic."

In the film's opening scene, Depp wears a constable's uniform which Atwood describes as incredibly chic. "Uniforms of the period were beautifully made," she says. "They weren't the polyester we have today." Once Ichabod travels to Sleepy Hollow, he essentially wears one costume in varying stages -- a long black waistcoat with hand-sewn gold trimming and a hand-printed silk lining that kicks back light when he moves. "People didn't have a lot of clothing unless they were incredibly wealthy," Atwood explains. "The idea with Ichabod's costume was to make it very minimal, sleek and long in feeling, a sort of shadowy feeling to his character."

The more elaborate costumes were worn by the villagers of Sleepy Hollow -- each one intricately crafted by Atwood and her team from specially chosen fabrics. "They're sort of like country folk that are five or six years behind the minute," says the designer, "but with the maximum amount of trim and gear to show their money on the outside." The most extravagant dresses belonged to Lady Van Tassel (Miranda Richardson). "She's definitely ruling the roost. When a character aspires to something greater than what they've had, they take it to a whole different level."

One of Atwood's favorite costumes is a black and white dress worn by Lady Van Tassel in the film's climactic chase scene. "It was such a challenge to create, and the way Miranda Richardson wore the costume was fantastic. The original inspiration was that it reminded me of bark in the forest. I wanted it to fit in the woods, but still be very grand and of her own world. Miranda really understood what the architecture of the dress was, that it went from light to dark. When she walked in it, she walked straight forward and then turned to the side, so you got the play of light on the costume."

"Sleepy Hollow" features several action set pieces, including stunts, pyrotechnics and special effects. Among the highlights: a masterfully choreographed fight scene between Ichabod (Johnny Depp), Brom (Casper Van Dien) and the Headless Horseman (Ray Park), and a suspense-filled coach chase through the Western Woods. The latter was filmed inside Leavesden's 'flight shed' where designers built a 400-foot-long forest.

Stunt coordinator Nick Gillard, whose recent film credits include "Star Wars -- The Phantom Menace," brings originality and humor to every action sequence. In addition to choreographing the fight scenes, Gillard, along with horse master Steve Dent, also gave riding instruction to the entire cast. Depp's horse, Gunpowder, is a Belgium carriage horse. The Headless Horseman's horse, Daredevil, was brought over from Seville, Spain and trained from scratch. "Spanish horses have the best nature," says Dent. "You just have to work with them for ten minutes and they're revved up like a Ferrari."

To capture the film's horror, filmmakers used the latest special effects and make-up techniques. Creature effects artist Kevin Yagher admits his greatest challenge was finding unusual ways for people to die. "Tim wanted very stylized decapitations, nothing that we've seen before," explains Yagher. In one instance

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