We just barely reported on HBO programming president Michael Lombardo having said that he expects True Detective season two casting news to arrive something over the forthcoming week - now we have the next best thing to an official announcement. Multiples sites are reporting that Colin Farrell is deep in talks to play the lead character in the second season of Nic Pizzolatto's high art/neo-Noir hybrid series, while Taylor Kitsch is said to be a front-runner for one of the three remaining "central roles."
Farrell, according to The Wrap, is near to reaching a deal that will see him portray True Detective season two's "older male lead" - a role that apparently requires someone who can play "rugged and gritty," while serving as the anchor for the anthology series' next installment. Even less is known about the "young male lead" that Kitsch is in the running for, though the actor is believed to have an edge over the other rumored contenders, such as Garrett Hedlund (TRON Legacy).
Now, although Farrell's name doesn't guarantee a decent box office turnout (few do nowadays...), he's recently found his niche as a character actor - having done fine work in such intimate dramas and/or non-mainstream films as Cassandra's Dream, In Bruges, Ondine, Seven Psychopaths, and Saving Mr. Banks, while also turning in memorable performances in more commercial fare such as Horrible Bosses and Fright Night - among other movies, that is.
Similarly, the recent push to make Kitsch a bankable action star went nowhere fast (after John Carter and Battleship under-performed), but the Friday Night Lights alum is now back to doing fine dramatic work in such projects as the true-story war movie Lone Survivor and HBO's multiple Emmy-nominated AIDS drama The Normal Heart. That is to say: both Farrell and Kitsch read as being fine choices, to lead the way in Pizzolatto's next deeply-philosphical character study by way of crime/cop tropes.
As for the plot of True Detective season two - that's an unsolved mystery for now. Pizzolatto has said that the story is set in California, but he recently back-tracked on his prior claim that this season will deal with "the secret occult history of the United States transportation system." It also seems that of the remaining "central" roles to be filled (assuming Farrell and Kitsch sign on, that is), at least one of them is a woman - the role that Jessica Chastain was considered for.
California has, of course, proven to be a good backdrop for many a noteworthy Noir-influenced drama released in the past (Chinatown, L.A. Confidential, etc.), so there are plenty of promising directions in which Pizzolatto may choose to go on this next season of True Detective. No matter what route the show ultimately takes, though, it ought to have little trouble attracting the cream of the crop in directors for season two (after the entirety of season one was overseen by filmmaker Cary Fukunaga).
We'll let you know who signs on for True Detective season two (cast members and directors alike) when we do.
Source: The Wrap