True Detective Season 2 was perhaps destined to be a letdown in the eyes of so many fans who obsessed over every second of its Season 1 plot, but we couldn’t have predicted just how hard some people were prepared to hit the show. Many critics and fans alike panned the second year’s story, and Season 1 director (and Season 2 executive producer) Cary Fukunaga recently revealed he hasn’t even seen the episodes amid reports of a fued between him and series writer Nic Pizzolatto.
Now, you can chalk all of that up to Hollywood gossip if you like, and there’s a good chance you’d be on the right track, but True Detective doesn’t get any help from at least one director who passed on directing the beginning of Season 2. That director is David Cronenberg, who made classics like The Fly and The Dead Zone and who was apparently approached to work on the show (along with other rumored contenders like The Exorcist director William Friedkin.
Speaking at the Reykjavik International Film Festival this week, Cronenberg said he was approached for the show, but turned it down. Why? Well, he didn’t like the script, but he didn’t exactly reveal that in a very delicate way.
“The heat is in TV,” Cronenberg said. “Last year I was approached to direct the first episode of the second season of True Detective, I considered it but I thought that the script was bad, so I didn’t do it. In TV, the director is just a traffic cop, but on the other hand it is work and there’s a lot of it.”
Often in situations like this, you get a director who says "The scheduling didn’t work out” or “We just weren’t the right fit.” It’s fascinating and sort of delightful that Cronenberg just went for the “it was bad” throat here. And hey, he’s probably better off.