Cary Fukunaga Called Working On ‘True Detective’ A ‘Disheartening’ Experience After Creator Nic Pizzolatto Got ‘More Power’

The MVP of True Detective season one wasn’t Matthew McConaughey, Woody Harrelson, or Alexandra Daddario, or creator Nic Pizzolatto, or the beer can men. It was Cary Fukunaga, who directed every episode of the HBO show’s first season, including this all-time great sequence. True Detective hasn’t been able to re-capture that season one magic since (although season three came close), and that’s partially due to Fukunaga leaving to explore other projects, including the next James Bond movie, No Time to Die. In an interview with the Hollywood Reporter, he discussed why he didn’t return for further seasons and his “disheartening” relationship with Pizzolatto.

“The show was presented to me in the way we pitched it around town — as an independent film made into television. The writer and director are a team,” he said. “Over the course of the project, Nic kept positioning himself as if he was my boss and I was like, ‘But you’re not my boss. We’re partners. We collaborate.’ By the time they got to postproduction, people like [former programming president] Michael Lombardo were giving Nic more power. It was disheartening because it didn’t feel like the partnership was fair.” Fukunaga praised Pizzolatto as a “good writer,” but (there’s always a but)…

“…but I do think he needs to be edited down. It becomes too much about the writing and not enough about the momentum of the story. My struggle with him was to take some of these long dialogue scenes and put some air into them. We differed on tone and taste.”

Presented without comment:

No Time to Die comes out on October 8.

(Via the Hollywood Reporter)