Nic Pizzolatto will return as showrunner
Like its anthology series peers, True Detective is rebooting itself every season with a new plot, new mystery, new characters, and new actors. The only person staying on board is showrunner Nic Pizzolatto. Another change involves the directing; last season, Cary Fukunaga directed every episode but this time, the show will employ more than one director — presumably, each director will do two or three episodes of the eight that will make up the first season. Justin Lin has been confirmed for the first two episodes.
There will be four leads instead of two
The amount of rumored leads has been ever-changing. First, we assumed it would continue with the duo that Season 1 put in place, then Pizzolatto claimed it would have three leads (probably just to screw with our hashtag game) and finally, a short while ago, he confirmed that there would be four “central roles” (which, as we’ll learn, doesn’t necessarily mean there will be four detectives). Not much has been confirmed about who these characters will be, but Collider has rumored details — and here are HBO’s official descriptions for two of them:
Ray Velcoro, a compromised detective whose allegiances are torn between his masters in a corrupt police department and the mobster who owns him. Frank Semyon, a career criminal in danger of losing his empire when his move into legitimate enterprise is upended by the murder of a business partner.
Colin Farrell and Vince Vaughn will definitely star
Was there any casting news more anticipated than this? Who’d play the leads in Season 2 was all anyone could talk about, even before the first season officially ended. Farrell and Vaughn were rumored recently, and their involvement was finally confirmed by the Network. They’ll play Velcoro and Semyon, respectively.
Everyone else in the world is rumored to star
The most prominent and likely true rumor involves Taylor Kitsch (Friday Night Lights), who would likely play Paul Woodrugh, a young military veteran who works as a Highway Patrol Officer. Rounding out the trio of detectives is a woman — Collider names the character as Ani Bezzerides, a gambling and boozing sheriff. There have been a million names buzzing around for True Detective‘s overdue woman and for a while, it seemed like it would surely be Elisabeth Moss (we had our reservations). Now, according to Variety, it looks like that role will go to Rachel McAdams. It’d be great casting (and a Wedding Crashers reunion), so let’s hope this one is true.
Season 2 will deal with murder and the occult
The season will center around the murder of a corrupt city manager named Ben Caspar. As Pizzolatto hinted earlier, the season will be about “hard women, bad men and the secret occult history of the United States transportation system” — and now The Wrap, which obtained a breakdown, confirms that the central murder investigation concerns a crime that takes place “amid a potentially groundbreaking transportation deal that would forever change freeway gridlock in the state.” An investigation into the murder by three law enforcement officers (of varying places/branches) gets real dark, as there are satanic symbols carved into the victim’s chest, hinting that he may have dabbled in the occult.
It will take place in California
While Season 1 took place in the murky environs of Louisiana, Season 2 will move to California. Pizzolatto has specifically said the show won’t be in mainstream Hollywood, but will instead explore some of the lesser known parts of the state. Per The Wrap, the victim’s body is found “on a lonely stretch of Pacific Coast Highway near Big Sur.”