HBO’s Southern-fried blend of neo-Noir storytelling and philosophical meditation,True Detective season one was not just the first major TV “event” of 2014; it also started what continues to be a great year for costar Matthew McConaughey – one that already includes an Oscar win (for his Dallas Buyers Club performance) and a lead role in this fall’s Christopher Nolan sci-fi tentpole, Interstellar. Interestingly, McConaughey’s Interestellar costar, Oscar-nominee Jessica Chastain, could soon be headed to the True Detective world of American crime, according to a new report.
True Detective season one – for those who are either in need of a refresher or just tuning in – examines Louisiana detectives Rust Cohle (McConaughey) and Marty Hart’s (Woody Harrelson) seventeen-year journey to track down an elusive serial killer, known as the Yellow King. Through the use of multiple flashbacks and unreliable narration by its characters, the series thoroughly examines the corrosive effects this case has on Cohle and Hart’s personal lives and relationships – as filtered through their own points of view, that is.
Created by Nic Pizzolatto, True Detective season one earned much critical acclaim for its leads’ performances, its scholarly treatment of certain pulpy tropes, and director Cary Fukunaga’s technically-astute flourishes and construction of the series, on the whole. In terms of criticism, however, season one was also (fairly) called out for offering something of a typical, myopic vision of the detective experience, seen from a primarily male perspective. (Criticisms that Pizzolatto has politely defended season one from, in the past.)
Of course, one of the perks that comes with the anthology format – something True Detective adheres to – is it allows the show runner to start afresh and potentially break new ground artistically, from season to season. Pizzolatto has indicated in the past that he might explore the world of American crime from a female perspective in season two – and now, sources for Nerdist are claiming that Jessica Chastain has been offered one of the lead roles in a “female-driven cast” for the next True Detective storyline.
Chastain, like McConaughey, specializes in rich character portraits, but she definitely like to keep it varied; for example, her award-winning turn as the obsessive CIA agent Maya in Zero Dark Thirty is a far cry from her role as kind, but naive housewife Celia in The Help, as well as her punk musician Annabel in Mama. Which is to say: no matter what role Pizzolatto has in place for Chastain to play – assuming the latest rumor is true – it would very much be interesting to see her take it on (and thus, let us see how it compares to her previous work).
Of course, the downside of being a recognized talent is that Chastain is very in-demand at the moment; she’s also reported to be mulling over an offer to play a lead role in Mission: Impossible 5 right now – among other job offers, possibly. That doesn’t mean she can’t appear in both the next Mission: Impossible and True Detective season, especially since the latter doesn’t have a concrete production timeline right now. Either project could make for a rewarding time investment for Chastain (in very different ways, of course); we’ll just have to wait and see what she does, now that the ball’s in her court.