12:33pm PT by Lesley Goldberg, Lacey Rose
It's Official: Rachel McAdams, Taylor Kitsch, Kelly Reilly to Co-Star in 'True Detective'
HBO is officially firming up True Detective's second-season cast.
The eight-episode sophomore season, now in production in California, centers on three police officers and a career criminal who must navigate a web of conspiracy in the aftermath of a murder.
Colin Farrell will play Ray Velcoro, a compromised detective whose allegiances are torn between his masters in a corrupt police department and the mobster who owns him. Vince Vaughn is set as 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.
McAdams will play Ani Bezzerides, a Ventura County Sheriff's Office detective whose uncompromising ethics put her at odds with others and the system she serves. Kitsch is set as Paul Woodrugh, a war veteran and motorcycle officer for the CHP who is running from a difficult past and the sudden glare of a scandal that never happened. Reilly is Jordan, Frank's wife and a former D-list actress who is a full partner in his enterprises and ambitions.
Season two will be written by Nic Pizzolatto and will be directed by a cadre of helmers — including Justin Lin — after the planned departure of Emmy winner Cary Fukunaga. In a cover interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Pizzolatto, who not only writes every episode but is intimately involved with the casting, noted that a move to multiple directors for season two has more to do with being able to move at a faster production pace than anything else.
Despite critical raves almost across the board, particularly impressive for a first-time showrunner, the gritty anthology series failed to deliver on expectations at August's Emmy awards, where AMC incumbent Breaking Bad proved the night's big winner. Although Pizzolatto has looked to manage expectations ahead of the show's sophomore season, HBO programming president Michael Lombardo has said on multiple occasions that the season two scripts that he's seen are even "more exciting" than those for season one.
Production on season two is set to begin later this fall in California.
McAdams — who starred alongside Reilly in Sherlock Holmes — is repped by WME, Magnolia Entertainment and Hirsch Wallerstein. Reilly is with ICM Partners and Troika; Kitsch, who co-starred on HBO's The Normal Heart, is with CAA and Untitled.