Colin Farrell is in advanced talks to star in the highly anticipated second season of HBO's True Detective. According to Variety, the Irish actor will board Nic Pizzolato's acclaimed series, which starred Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson in its first outing.

Matthew McConaugheyMatthew McConaughey as Rust Cohle in 'True Detective' season one

"I think the people we will cast will be well-known names," HBO president Michael Lombardo said at Thursday's TCA presentation. "But that wasn't our ambition (in season 1)."

It is rumored that Farrell will be joined by a female co-star, though Nic Pizzolatto confirmed that the show will feature four lead roles. 

"They didn't exist until I created them, then in their creation I developed a personal attachment to them," Pizzolatto said of his new characters. "I think it's the same in anything you write. It's your job to come up with compelling characters who speak to an individual authenticity. If I'm not interested in the characters I can't go on. I have to be fascinated by them. It's the same job as Season 1 to me."

More: True Detective season 2 casting news due next week

Matthew McConaughey Woody HarrelsonWoody Harrelson [L] and Matthew McConaughey [R] in 'True Detective'

Taylor Kitsch is rumored to be in the mix for one of the other characters, with Garrett Hedlund also apparently in talks. 

True Detective earned numerous Emmy nominations on Thursday, including lead actor nods for both Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson. The show averaged a gross audience of 11 million viewers and became HBO's best rated rookie show since Six Feet Under in 2001.

HBO has declined to comment on reports of Farrell's casting though Lombardo said he thought the second season would be "more exciting" than the first. 

"Nic (Pizzolatto) is an incredibly talented writer, and he's blown us away with the first two episodes," Lombardo said.

More: Will Colin Farrell star in 'True Detective' season 2?