The Last of Us. Photo: Pinterest
The Last of Us. Photo: Pinterest

The video game takes place in the aftermath of an apocalypse resulting from a pandemic that turns humans into aggressive, zombie-like mutants. It follows the adventures of Joel, a middle-aged survivor whose family members have all died, and Ellie, an immune teenage girl he smuggles out of quarantine, as they cross the U.S. and struggle for survival, forcing the player, who controls Joel, to make difficult decisions along the way. Now, a new series based on the game is in the works at HBO.

The Last of Us TV show release date

The Last of Us TV show has only just been confirmed as being in development, so we’re not going to get a clear idea of a release date for a while yet, other than "coming soon to HBO". Let them write the thing first!

Co-writer Craig Mazin has commented on production, saying that The Last of Us 2 will need to be tied up before things get really underway: “We can’t start on it right away because they’re still finishing up the second game. We’ve been talking about it for months, little plans and things. We’re going to dig in in full, full earnest once they wrap up their final work on the sequel. Hopefully more exciting news to come on that front ‘cos it’s something we’re both motivated to see on TV" (via GamesRadar).

To speculate: we think 2020 is far too soon, late 2021 is possible, but 2022 seems more likely given the attention and effects work that HBO will likely want to give the show. Honestly, please don't rush this one, as reported by Techradar.

The Last of Us cast

Let's get the big news out of the way, the lead roles of Joel and Ellie will be played by The Mandalorian's Pedro Pascal and Game of Thrones star Bella Ramsey.

That's as much as we know when it comes to casting on the show, but since we know it'll follow the story of the game, we roughly know what other characters that we can expect to see in the show.

They include Joel's brother Tommy, Joel's smuggling partner and friend Tess, Fireflies leader Marlene and Ellie's friend and love interest Riley, who appeared in The Last of Us prequel Left Behind.

Druckmann has also been teasing that the TV show will eventually feature Abby, the controversial character introduced in The Last of Us Part II. If you haven't played the games, we'll leave off just why Abby proved so divisive.

There have been no casting rumours yet about who might play the other characters, so it could well be that some roles will be played by the same actors who voiced them in the original game.

However, after Pascal's casting, we know that Troy Baker won't be playing Joel in the TV show, although he has an idea of how he can cameo in the series.

"I would love to be someone who's like, 'By the way, he's an Infected' and I want to be blown up by Joel. That would be the best. Or just the guy who's like Quint in Jaws, just like, 'Oh, you think you're gonna make it out of this? Let me tell you where you're gonna go'," he said on his YouTube channel.

The Last of Us HBO series story

Photo: Daily Express
Photo: Daily Express

So far, only a synopsis has been officially revealed by HBO: "The story takes place 20 years after modern civilization has been destroyed. Joel, a hardened survivor, is hired to smuggle Ellie, a 14-year-old girl, out of an oppressive quarantine zone. What starts as a small job soon becomes a brutal, heartbreaking journey, as they both must traverse across the U.S. and depend on each other for survival."

As revealed by The Hollywood Reporter in early March, the series will "cover the events of the original game… with the possibility of additional content based on the forthcoming game sequel [The Last of Us 2]."

A separate report from the publication indicates that "future seasons" are a possibility, meaning this is unlikely to be a Chernobyl-style miniseries but instead one that will stretch out over several years. The mention of sequel story beats also making their way into the HBO series should also whet the appetite of many with the game due out shortly.

Co-creator Craig Mazin has also hinted that The Last of Us HBO series may be a more definitive version of the game's story, telling the BBC, "In this case, I’m doing it with [Neil Druckmann], and so the changes that we're making are designed to fill things out and expand, not to undo, but rather to enhance." In the same interview, he added that the TV series will include a moment not in the games that will make our jaws drop, said gamesradar.

The Last of Us TV show: where can you watch it?

The show is being developed for HBO, with Naughty Dog’s Neil Druckmann acting as co-writer alongside screenwriter Craig Mazin, who won an Emmy for outstanding writing on HBO's highly-praised Chernobyl miniseries that aired last year.

We expect it will be – like the six-episode Chernobyl, or nine-episode Watchmen – a miniseries consisting of only handful of episodes, in order to tell a punchy, contained story.

It will end up on HBO Max – the new streaming platform being released by HBO in May 2020. However, the new streaming service isn’t replacing the existing HBO Go and HBO Now services yet, so we may see it on more than one HBO platform.

HBO is a US-exclusive platform, though. If you're in the UK, your best bet is likely Now TV, which often carries HBO shows such as Watchmen or Succession – though Sky is also a home for some HBO titles too. In Australia, you're probably looking at Foxtel. We'll update this page when we're a bit closer to the show releasing with more information on this.

Who’s behind the HBO adaptation?

Craig Mazin, the creator of the Golden Globe and Emmy-winning HBO miniseries Chernobyl, will expand on his experience creating emotional, tragic TV shows. In a rare occurrence for video game adaptations, Mazin will be working with Neil Druckmann, the game’s writer and creative director, to write and executive produce the new series.

“Neil Druckmann is without question the finest storyteller working in the video game medium,” said Mazin in a press release, “and The Last of Us is his magnum opus. Getting a chance to adapt this breathtaking work of art has been a dream of mine for years, and I’m so honored to do it in partnership with Neil.”

Other executive producers will include Carolyn Strauss, a TV executive who was responsible for commissioning series like The Sopranos, Curb Your Enthusiasm and Sex and the City; and Evan Wells, the president of Naughty Dog, the video game developer behind The Last of Us. The series will be co-produced by Sony Pictures Television and PlayStation Productions, making it the first TV series to be produced by the latter.

For more interesting news of KnowInsiders, check out right below!

Interceptor: Release Date, Casts, Plot and Elsa Pataky Interceptor: Release Date, Casts, Plot and Elsa Pataky

Elsa Pataky and Luke Bracey have joined the upcoming Netflix thriller Interceptor. Director Matthew Reilly is about to shoot this one in New South Wales, ...

'Venom: Let There Be Carnage': Latest Updates and What is the Exact Release Date?

The next season of Venom will be released in September after a week being delayed. If you're interested in Venom: Let There Be Carnage, check ...

The Witcher Blood Origin: Release Date, Casts, Plot and Trailer The Witcher Blood Origin: Release Date, Casts, Plot and Trailer

Attention! There is a prequel to the Netflix series 'The Witcher', The Witcher: Blood Origin, released soon. Keeping track on this series by reading the ...