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story.lead_photo.caption Mahershala Ali, the lead actor in Season 3 of HBO’s True Detective, said Monday during a media event at Tugboat’s Place in Madison County that the Ozark Mountains landscape will be a key part of conveying the series’ storyline to viewers. - Photo by J.T. Wampler

HBO has released the first trailer for True Detective’s third season, which was filmed in Northwest Arkansas earlier this year.

The eight-episode season, set to premiere in January, is centered on a “macabre crime” that takes place in the Ozarks over three different time periods. Filming began in February and was completed in early August.

“Touch darkness and darkness touches you back,” a True Detective synopsis states, calling it a “searing series of troubled cops and the investigations that drive them to the edge.”

Oscar-winning lead actor Mahershala Ali plays an Arkansas State Police detective and Carmen Ejogo portrays a schoolteacher with a connection to two missing children in 1980.

"Before you ever knew me, I wasn't scared much. I wasn't a fearful man. Things I've seen, things I know, don't do anything but cause harm. My whole brain is a bunch of missing pieces," Ali's character says in a trailer voiceover.

"My job... there's no certainty. This peace is more haunting than anything. I want to know the whole story."

Other cast members include Stephen Dorff as Ali’s state police partner, Scoot McNair as “a father who suffers a terrible loss” and Mamie Gummer as a “young mother of two at the center” of the crime.

Nic Pizzolatto, who attended graduate school at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, wrote and directed the season, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette previously reported.

Executive producers include Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson, who starred as partner detectives in the show’s first season.

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