The Headless Horseman is the main antagonist in The Adventures Of Ichabod and Mr. Toad, specifically the Legend of Sleepy Hollow segment.
He was voiced by the late Billy Bletcher.
In the Disney Adaption of the story, the Headless Horseman is the ghost of a horseman who died in the woods after having been decapitated. According to the song sung by Brom Bones, the Horseman has been spurned by the other spirits and demons within the hollow and due to this the Horseman wants to obtain a new head,
Role in the film
Brom Bones musically tells this soldier's legend at a Halloween party in order to scare Ichabod Crane to the point where he sweats up a storm. Later that night, Ichabod comes face to faceless with the Horseman himself (while originally in the film it was just his imagination). After a spectacular chase scene, Ichabod crosses a bridge (that Brom said would render the Headless Horseman powerless), but the Headless Horseman tosses his flaming Jack O'Lantern at Ichabod toward the screen. The very next morning, Ichabod's hat was found, and very close to it, a shattered pumpkin. But there was no trace of the schoolmaster. It was shortly thereafter that Brom Bones lead a girl Ichabod had a crush on to the altar. Now, rumors persisted that Ichabod was still alive and married to a wealthy widow in a distant county, but settlers refused to believe such nonsense, for they knew that the schoolmaster had been spirited away by the Headless Horseman.
Comparison to Source Material
In the original story the Horseman was said to have been the ghost of a Hessian Soldier who was decapitated by a cannonball on the battle of White Plains in 1771, while in the film his exact backstory was never made clear. It is also strongly implied in the book that the horseman was completely fictitious and that Ichabod was chased by Brom Bones in disguise while in the film it's never made clear.
- There is a lot of debate upon whether or not the Headless Horseman is real. Some think he is, but most believe that Ichabod simply dreamed it, or that Brom Bones is the headless horseman in disguise.
- The Headless Horseman made an appearance in House Of Mouse. He was also in House Of Villains.