The creative team behind HBO’s upcoming The Last of Us live-action adaptation minced no words when describing the inspiration behind the upcoming series, praising the game as the greatest story in video game history.
Speaking to Empire Magazine recently, showrunner Craig Mazin (Chernobyl) talked about the tall task of delivering not only a great television series, but one that was based on a video game — something that’s been hard to do in the past. For Mazin, getting to team up with Naughty Dog’s Neil Druckmann — who co-wrote and directed both The Last of Us and The Last of Us Part II — to tackle the game was a no-brainer because, according to him, the story told in the series is the best ever in a video game.
“It’s an open-and-shut case: this is the greatest story that has ever been told in video games,” Mazin said, while later explaining that the fact that the story is so grounded is what makes it incredible. “They didn’t shoot anything out of their eyeballs, they were just people. And that, in and of itself, is remarkably rare in games. The fact that they kept it so grounded, and really made you feel — I had never experienced anything like it, and I’ve been playing video games since 1977.”
The Last of Us series will tackle the events of the first game. Joining Pascal and Ramsey are Gabriel Luna (Terminator: Dark Fate) as Tommy Miller, Nico Parker (Dumbo) as Joel’s daughter Sarah, Anna Torv (Mindhunter) as Tess, and Merle Dandridge (The Flight Attendant) as she reprises her role from the video games as Marlene, the leader of a resistance group known as the Fireflies. It also features Jeffrey Pierce (Bosch) as Perry, Murray Bartlett (The White Lotus) as Frank, Con O’Neill (Chernobyl) as Bill, and Storm Reid (Euphoria) as Riley.
The live-action series is executive produced and co-written by Chernobyl creator Craig Mazin and original game writer Neil Druckmann, who is also serving as one of the directors. It is a co-production with Sony Pictures Television in association with PlayStation Productions. Executive producers are Carolyn Strauss, Naughty Dog President Evan Wells, and PlayStation Productions’ Asad Qizilbash and Carter Swan.