The Banff World Media Festival (which, as we all know, "delivers a comprehensive examination of the most critical issues facing the television and digital media industries through keynotes from industry leaders, contentious panel discussions, expert forecasts, celebrity Master Classes, critical case studies, key strategy sessions and more") is in full swing up in Alberta, Canada right now, and today True Detective creator Nic Pizzolatto stopped by for a press conference that allowed him to do a little rumor control regarding True Detective's second season.
First up: in regards to all those Brad Pitt/Christian Bale rumors that have been floating around lately, Pizzolatto says:
Literally, not a single rumour about casting that has been printed anywhere has any truth to it whatsoever...I mean that literally.
I’ve seen entertainment reporters say ‘My sources say . . . ‘ There are no sources. There’s me and two other guys and they don’t even know what I’m doing.”
Pizzolatto went on to clarify that no one's been cast, and that at present he's only spoken to "one person about it, possibly". Might that be Jessica Chastain, who's been heavily rumored to play one of the season's three leads? Well...
Again, it’s a rumour with no basis in fact...There is a strong (lead) female character. But I wouldn’t say it is female-led or anything like that.
Honestly, that's a little bit of a bummer. The Chastain rumors were so prevalent, I was sort of inclined to believe 'em, and happy to do so. I suppose it's possible Pizzolatto's bullshitting here, but I don't get the impression that Pizzolatto's the type of guy who enjoys playing "Mystery Box" with his audience. Really doesn't seem like the guy has that preciousness about him.
A few more tidbits of information were dropped during the interview (the second season's first two episodes are already written; there will be four "leads," not three; he's got some "vague ideas" for the show's third season), but the biggest bombshell has to be Pizzolatto casually mentioning that he thinks his involvement with True Detective won't stretch beyond three seasons:
Every season, I’m essentially creating a brand new TV show...It can’t have any growing pains like a regular first season. If it works it has to work right out of the box. That’s incredibly exhausting. I mean, the job is exhausting to begin with, but it’s doubly exhausting and I’m writing every episode. I can’t imagine I would do this more than three years. I mean, I’d like to have a regular TV show. We’ll have some fixed sets, regular actors and I could bring in people to help and I don’ t have to be there every second. It’d be great.
On the one hand: well, shit. On the other: this isn't the worst thing I can imagine. Pizzolatto-- along with direct Cary Fukunaga-- helped lead True Detective through an outstanding first season, and I've got faith he can deliver something just as compelling (and just as high-quality) with season two. If he feels like he's only got a few seasons' worth of quality in him, well, good on him for not milking it.
Head on over to the Calgary Herald's report on the press conference for a few other statements from Pizzolatto on True Detective, including how he reacted to the bizarre theorizing and online mania that surrounded the show's first season (or just go ahead and assume I've already snagged the choice cuts for you above and head directly to the comments section to start fan-casting season two).