Well, it looks like The Last of Us series has finally found their Joel and Ellie. For the HBO adaptation of the Naughty Dog game, we will now see Pedro Pascal as Joel and Bella Ramsey as Ellie. Helming the series will be Chernobyl creators Craig Mazin and Neil Druckmann.
Released back in 2013, the Naughty Dog developed game was a Playstation exclusive and received numerous game of the year awards. This well-loved game follows the story of Joel, a grizzled old smuggler, who must transport the young Ellie to the Fireflies, a rebel militia group. A mutant fungus has ravaged the United States, turning human hosts into aggressive monsters who evolve and become more and more terrifying. What follows is a dangerous story of survival in a tragic world. Joel and Ellie must travel from Massachusetts to Salt Lake City and in the process of the journey the two bond, and a genuine connection forms.
For those who haven’t played the games, I won’t spoil much more, but needless to say, this is not a story with happy endings, and the sequel The Last of Us Part II is somehow grimmer.
But! If you’re worried about how the series will treat this beloved game, have no fear. Mazin and Druckmann are not only fantastic showrunners (watch Chernobyl if you haven’t) but Druckmann is the creative director for the games series and the co-president of Naughty Dog.
For Pascal, this marks a return to HBO after his role as the iconic (but also tragic) Oberyn Martell from Game of Thrones. Since his GoT days we’ve seen him in Narcos, Wonder Woman 1984, and, of course, as our favorite Mando in The Mandalorian.
You’ll also know his co-star Ramsey for her role on Game of Thrones as Lyanna Mormont, the plain-speaking lady of her small but proud house. Recently we’ve also seen Ramsey in HBO’s His Dark Materials.
Not much is known yet about how the adaptation will differ from the game. Will it be shot for shot? Probably not, even with the cinematic nature of TLOU. Will it include characters from the second game? Perhaps we’ll see life before the fungus destroyed the country? Time will tell. Needless to say, we are excited to see more and happy to see Pedro Pascal has cemented his role as gruff-but-soft father-figure.