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True Detective: Night Country: Trailer, Cast, Release Date, and Everything Else to Know About Season 4

Night Country is coming in the dead of winter

Liam Mathews
Kali Reis and Jodie Foster, True Detective: Night Country

Kali Reis and Jodie Foster, True Detective: Night Country

Michele K. Short/HBO

True Detective is heading to the Last Frontier. After almost five years away, the hit HBO anthology series is returning for its long-awaited fourth season, and it's moving the action to Alaska — a far cry from the hot and sweaty settings of earlier True Detective seasons. Officially titled True Detective: Night Country, this season stars Jodie Foster and Kali Reis as a pair of detectives tasked with solving a mysterious disappearance during the long winter night.

The crime drama anthology has had a long journey to Season 4. True Detective premiered in 2014 and has had some ups and downs over the course of its run, with seasons both influential (Season 1) and ignominious (Season 2). The most recent season aired in 2019 and starred Mahershala Ali. After that season, creator Nic Pizzolatto's contract with HBO ended, leaving the future of True Detective uncertain. But in March 2022, HBO announced that a new take on True Detective was in the works from executive producer Barry Jenkins and writer-director Issa López.

Here's everything we know so far about True Detective: Night Country

True Detective: Night Country latest news

Just as the days getting shorter has been particularly noticeable, HBO appropriately dropped some big news on True Detective: Night Country. In late September, the network revealed the series' release date — Jan. 14 — and debuted a new trailer, which makes the series look even creepier than before. 

True Detective Season 4 release date

On Sept. 27, HBO announced that True Detective: Night Country will premiere on Jan. 14, 2024. The new season was originally expected to premiere in 2023 (the teaser trailer ends with a note that it's "coming this year"), but in late August, Deadline reported that HBO had pushed the release of True Detective Season 4 back to January. An exact premiere date has not been announced.  

True Detective Season 4 trailer

On April 12, HBO released the first official teaser trailer for True Detective: Night Country. It previews a tense working relationship between the season's lead detectives, Foster's Liz Danvers and Reis' Evangeline Navarro, who team up on their investigation. "No one can stand you," Navarro tells Danvers. Sounds fun! 

On Sept. 27, HBO released a new trailer for True Detective: Night Country in conjunction with news of the release date, and somehow, it's even creepier and more sinister than the first trailer. This new look incorporates more Alaska natives, and appears to emphasize how the Indigenous community is affected by the murders. 

True Detective Season 4 first look

On Feb. 15, HBO released the first image from the series via Twitter. The photo shows stars Jodie Foster and Kali Reis looking pretty cool in the snowy, desolate landscape of Alaska. 

True Detective Season 4 storyline 

After spending the first three seasons in hot locales like Louisiana and Southern California, Season 4 is heading to the frozen North. It's set in Ennis, Alaska, a town so far north that it experiences polar night. As that long winter night settles, the eight men who operate the Tsalal Arctic Research Station vanish without a trace. The detectives on the case are Liz Danvers (Jodie Foster) and Evangeline Navarro (Kali Reis), who "must confront their pasts and the dark truths lying underneath the Arctic ice," according to HBO's official logline. It sounds like an interesting twist on the broodingly masculine and ambiguously supernatural template Nic Pizzolatto established in Season 1. 

Who's behind True Detective Season 4?

The showrunner, executive producer, writer, and director of all episodes is Issa López, the Mexican filmmaker best known for the film Tigers Are Not Afraid. In addition to starring, Jodie Foster is executive-producing as well. Moonlight director Barry Jenkins is an executive producer through his production company PASTEL, along with Adele Romanski and Mark Ceryak. Other EPs include Ozark showrunner Chris Mundy and writer Alan Page Arriaga, whose previous credits include a Spanish-language episode of Fear the Walking Dead. Nic Pizzolatto, Matthew McConaughey, Woody Harrelson, and Cary Joji Fukunaga all have EP credits, but are not involved in Season 4. Producers Princess Daazhraii Johnson and Cathy Tagnak Rexford led an Iñupiaq advisory council consulting on Alaska Native culture for the show, according to Deadline.

True Detective Season 4 cast

As you might expect, the True Detective: Night Country cast is stacked. Two-time Oscar-winner Jodie Foster leads the cast, which also features familiar faces from HBO's repertory players and Indigenous actors making their HBO debuts. Kali Reis, the second-billed star, is a former professional boxer who made her film debut in the 2021 thriller Catch the Fair One, for which she earned an Independent Spirit Award nomination for Best Female Lead. She's also a motivational speaker and supporter of the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls movement who teaches Indigenous women how to protect themselves both physically and vocally, according to HBO

Here's the cast, with character descriptions via Deadline

  • Jodie Foster - Det. Liz Danvers
  • Kali Reis - Det. Evangeline Navarro
  • John Hawkes - Hank Prior, a police officer with old grudges hiding under a quiet surface.
  • Christopher Eccleston - Ted Corsaro, the regional chief of police with a long history tying him to Liz Danvers.
  • Fiona Shaw - Rose Aguineau, a survivalist with a past full of secrets.
  • Finn Bennett - Peter Prior, Liz Danvers' protégé and apprentice — for better or worse.
  • Anna Lambe - Kayla Malee, a young nurse with little patience for anybody who messes with her family.
  • Aka Niviâna - Julia, Navarro's sister, a woman battling demons both in her history and in her mind.
  • Isabella Star Lablanc - Leah, Danvers' stepdaughter, a young woman fighting for her voice and her identity.
  • Joel D. Montgrand - Eddie Qavvik, Navarro's love interest. He's a local musher with connections that run deep in Ennis.

True Detective Season 4 production notes

On Nov. 8, 2022, HBO announced that production on True Detective: Night Country was underway in Iceland, which will stand in for Alaska, where the season is set. HBO shared a photo of a slate, and though the background of the photo is blurry, it's clearly a hockey rink. The slate confirms that as expected, Issa López is the director, and reveals that Florian Hoffmeister (Tár, The Terror) is director of photography.   

On Twitter, HBO shared a look at the first page of the script. 

Where to watch True Detective

True Detective: Night Country will air on HBO and stream on Max. True Detective Seasons 1-3 are currently streaming on Max.