'True Detective': Mahershala Ali in Talks for Season 3 Lead

Mahershala Ali attends the 89th Annual Academy Awards -Getty-H 2017
Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Mahershala Ali may have found his next act.

The Moonlight Oscar winner is in early discussions for a starring role in a potential third season of HBO anthology True Detective. A deal is far from done — and it remains unclear if there will actually be a third cycle of the franchise. HBO declined comment.

HBO programming president Casey Bloys has made no secret of his desire to move forward with the one-time Emmy-winning anthology. News broke in March that Deadwood creator David Milch was in early talks to board a potential third cycle of the franchise from creator Nic Pizzolatto. The latter, who has not done another series since True Detective's critically panned sophomore run, remains under an overall deal (through 2018) with HBO.

"We're open to someone else writing it with Nic supervising it; it's a really valuable franchise for us," Bloys told reporters in July 2016. "It's not dead; I'm just not sure we have the right take for a third season — yet."

Ali, who won an Academy Award for his supporting turn in best picture Moonlight, has had television roles in Netflix's House of Cards, as well as the streaming giant's Marvel drama Luke Cage.

He's with WME and Anonymous Content, which also produces True Detective.