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Fox's 'Sleepy Hollow' Sets 'Shame's' Nicole Beharie as Female Lead

She'll play a detective with a troubling past in the high-concept pilot from "Fringe's" Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman.

Nicole Beharie - P 2013
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Nicole Beharie

Fox's high-concept Sleepy Hollow has found its female lead.

Shame breakout Nicole Beharie has been tapped to play the female lead in the drama pilot adaptation of The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.

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In the script, Ichabod is described as a captain in the Revolutionary War who has been to hell and back. The former history professor finds himself catapulted to present-day Sleepy Hollow, where he's indicted for the murder of a police officer and forced to prove not only his innocence but make a wary detective believe he's a traveler from the 18th century.

Beharie will play Detective Abbie Archer, a smart and tough detective in the small town of Sleepy Hollow. Poised to leave the town in a week for the FBI Academy, she has an unspoken reluctance about her decision. Her troubling past causes her to doubt her perceptive abilities, and she's horrified as she witnesses the gory slaying of her partner and mentor, Sheriff August Grey. Barely able to speak about what she saw, only one person can corroborate her story -- Ichabod Crane, an unwilling fugitive from the past who claims to be a soldier in the Revolutionary War.

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She joins a cast that includes Drumline's Orlando Jones and Dexter's Katia Winter, who respectively play a detective and Ichabod's wife.

Fringe's Alex Kurtzman and Robert Orci will pen the pilot and executive produce, with Phil Iscove also on board to write and serve as a supervising producer. Heather Kadin will exec produce, while Len Wiseman will helm the pilot.

In addition to her role in Shame, Beharie next appears in the Jackie Robinson biopic 42. Repped by ICM Partners and ATA Management, her credits also include a stint on CBS' The Good Wife.

Email: Lesley.Goldberg@thr.com; Twitter: @Snoodit