When I wrote about Nicole Beharie several weeks ago, many of you requested that I pay more attention to Nicole’s Sleepy Hollow costar, English actor Tom Mison. Your advice was well-received. Tom is just my kind of guy – tall, handsome, funny, English and interesting. He plays Ichabod Crane in the hit Fox series Sleepy Hollow – a version of Ichabod Crane that is transported to the 21st century, who helps a modern young sheriff’s deputy played by Nicole. I’ve caught a few episodes and while I think the sci-fi/horror elements are a little bit overdone, it’s an interesting series and I look forward to watching more of it. Mostly because I like Nicole and now I really like Tom Mison.
So, I just saw this new interview with Mison in Entertainment Weekly – go here to read the full piece. I thought I would try to introduce a new Hot Guy to our growing collection. As you know, I’m always up for an Englishman. Vital stats: he’s 31 years old. He’s 6’1”. Before Sleepy Hollow, he was known mainly as a theater actor, although he’s done some film and TV work before, appearing in Parade’s End and Salmon Fishing in the Yemen. Here are some highlights from his EW piece:
He’s surprised by Sleepy Hollow’s success: “We’re [shooting] in some dark corner of deepest North Carolina — [so] we’re kind of in a bit of a bubble. We weren’t aware of how many billboards there were all over New York, for example, or how much it was promoted on telly. They’re very clever people watching, which is a dream. It’s so nice to be part of something that inspires people.”
How he, a virtual unknown, was cast in Sleepy Hollow: “Well, this was really the first year that I approached American pilots. [Sleepy Hollow] was actually the last one that I read — and immediately had to read it again because I didn’t quite believe what I had read the first time. It was so completely different, and such an audacious thing to attempt to make. So it immediately was the one that I wanted to do. I put myself on tape in London, one wet Saturday morning, went off to meet my mum and dad for lunch, and then forgot about it, as you do with auditions. And then a week later got a call saying, “You’re coming to L.A. tomorrow to screen test.” So I went and did a screen test for five hours, which I’ve never done before. Three of them were reading with Nicole, ’cause she’d already been cast. I left that five-hour audition and thought, ‘They were nice people, and it’s been a lot of fun, but I don’t know if I’ve got that,” in my typical self-deprecating English manner. “So I’m going to go and have a beer and a burger.” And just as I was tucking into my burger, I got a phone call from my agent, two hours after the audition, saying, “You’ve got the part.” And I just couldn’t stop laughing.”
His chemistry with Nicole: “I don’t think there’s anything mystical about chemistry between two actors. Immediately, we were throwing ideas at each other, and we were responding to each other and playing around. She’s a very playful, very clever actress. And that’s always a treat to play opposite. I think that’s where the chemistry lies — a mutual respect and a mutual quest for fun. Which, yeah, was present immediately.”
Whether he’s like Ichabod: “Yeah. Apart from the sticky-out ears and the very skinny shoulders, we’re actually not too different. I mean, I’m rather tall and lanky. I’m not as gangly and flailing as he is, I’m pleased to say.”
Working on Ichabod’s voice: “I had a very, very good speech coach when I was at drama school, a brilliant, brilliant lady called Carol Ziegler, who actually told me to concentrate on a certain style. She said, ‘Look at you. You’re not going to get any of these gritty, Ken Loach-style urban films. You should aim towards period stuff.’ Which was a very sensible bit of advice… I think because I don’t really look “street” enough for edgy, urban, modern things. With Ichabod, there’s lots with his voice that I wanted to achieve — a sense of archness and a sense of otherworldliness, a sense of authority. And just the fact that he’s a moody little prick at times.”
The English don’t discuss the American Revolution: “Well, we tend not to discuss that point in history, because it’s a war that we lost. So it’s not something that we learn in school. It’s been really nice to explore. I think people over here, they’re far too down on American history: ‘Oh, well, we have no history because we’re such a young country.’ But that’s not true at all. It’s such a rich history that you guys have. And now we’re utterly bastardizing it. [laughs]”
The Ichabod/Abbie shippers: “Oh, it’s really cool. I really like that they’ve got the name Ichabbie as well. It shows that people are invested, and care about the characters. And that’s all you can really ask for as an actor. It means we’re doing something right.”
He sounds like a nice, funny guy. Although he did refer to himself as “self-deprecating” several times in one interview, which… if you have to say it that many times, it means you’re really not all that self-deprecating. Which is fine. Own your hotness. As for the idea of Tom with Nicole… it would be interesting. I would be into it.
PS… I’m including beard photos and clean-shaven photos – the facial hair really changes his whole look. I like him better with some fur.
Photos courtesy of WENN.