Naughty Dog’s original The Last of Us had a pretty extensive story with enough content to cover in a television series, but that doesn’t mean we won’t be getting anything new in the upcoming HBO adaptation.
Talking to Empire, showrunner Craig Mazin explains how he and original game director Neil Druckmann approached the making of the series and tried to expand on the world of the game. Mazin explains:
“Games themselves are often brilliant to play, and not at all brilliant to watch when dramatized… Neil and I always knew to ask, ‘Why are we only doing what’s in the game? What can we do to expand?’”
Just based on what we see in the trailers and promo material, it looks like the series is going places where the game hasn’t. There’s a shot of Joel and Ellie looking over a downed airplane (which didn’t happen in the game), and we also have some imagery of what could be the explanation for a Cordycep origin.
If you’ve watched Chernobyl and Mythic Quest , you’ll know that Mazin is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to writing, and I’m so happy they really went all-in and had Druckmann working closely on the series as well. The Last of Us is probably one of the most solid narrative-focused gaming franchises today, and with a series incoming, we could be looking at a new standard for video game adaptations.
Catch The Last of Us when it premieres on HBO Max on Jan. 16,2023.