Rosario Dawson

True Detective Season 2 already has a great male cast in place, with Colin Farrell, Taylor Kitsch, and Vince Vaughn all signed on for major roles. But it’s had a tougher time trying to pin down the female lead.

Elisabeth Moss and Rachel McAdams have both been named as possibilities in recent weeks, but neither’s clinched the role quite yet. Now seven more actresses are entering the mix, including Rosario Dawson and Jessica Biel. Hit the jump for the latest on the True Detective Season 2 female lead casting.

TheWrap’s Jeff Sneider got his hands on a list of seven actresses who’ve been invited to read for the True Detective Season 2 female lead part: Rosario Dawson, Jessica Biel, Malin Akerman, Jaimie Alexander, Brit Marling, Oona Chaplin, and Kelly Reilly.

That’s in addition to Moss and McAdams, who are still in the running as far as we know. All the actresses are up for the same character, a no-nonsense Monterey sheriff named Ani Bezzarides who had a tough childhood and now struggles with gambling and alcohol addictions.

Of the seven new names, Biel and Dawson are the most famous of the pack, and Sneider seems to think they’re the favorites. Marling, Chaplin, and Reilly are not as well known as the other and are considered longer shots as a result.

Akerman and Chaplin have previous experience with HBO, from The Comeback and Game of Thrones, respectively. Alexander starred in an HBO pilot called Open that failed to get picked up. Marling and Reilly are just coming off of small-screen projects — Danny Boyle’s Babylon for the former and ABC’s Black Box for the latter.

All of the candidates could use the buzz of a prestigious HBO role. Chaplin, Marling, Reilly, and Alexander could use it to raise their profiles, while Akerman, Biel, and Dawson could take advantage of the opportunity to break out of their usual pretty-girl roles and show some serious leading-lady chops. With time running out, expect to hear an official announcement soon.

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