HBO Working On A ‘The Last of Us’ Series From Creator Of ‘Chernobyl’
It’s rare that converting video games to tv or film works, but when you have HBO and Craig Mazin, the creator of ‘Chernobyl’ behind it, and the game in question is the phenomenal ‘The Last of Us’, excuse us whilst we do a little excited dance!
For those of you unfamiliar with the game, it is set 20 years after a plague decimated civilisation, leaving survivors clinging to life inside harsh quarantine zones, whilst outside, vicious infected and ruthless human outlaws roam the land. The main story follows Joel, a smuggler, who is used to looking out for number one. But when he’s charged with escorting teenager Ellie in search of a resistance group, the Fireflies, they find their will to survive pushed to the limit.
Craig Mazin, the man who created the multi-award-winning drama ‘Chernobyl’, will exec produce and write the script alongside writer and creative director of the original game, Neil Druckmann. Carolyn Strauss (‘Chernobyl’, ‘Game of Thrones’) will also exec produce with Evan Wells, the president of Naughty Dog, the game’s developers. The project is a co-production between Sony Pictures Television and production company PlayStation Productions, the people behind the upcoming ‘Uncharted’ movie.
“Neil Druckmann is without question the finest storyteller working in the video game medium, and The Last of Us is his magnum opus,” commented Mazin. “Getting a chance to adapt this breathtaking work of art has been a dream of mine for years, and I’m so honoured to do it in partnership with Neil.”
The love goes both ways as Druckmann comments: “From the first time I sat down to talk with Craig I was equally blown away by his approach to narrative and his love and deep understanding of The Last of Us. With Chernobyl, Craig and HBO created a tense, harrowing, emotional masterpiece. I couldn’t think of better partners to bring the story of The Last of Us to life as a television show.”
When ‘The Last of Us’ was launched it sold 1.3 million units in the first 7 days, becoming the biggest video game launch of 2013 at the time. After 3 weeks, that jumped to 3.4 million units, topping charts around the globe. As of 2018, it had sold over 17 million copies across the original PS3 release and the remastered version for PS4. That is likely to jump again with ‘The Last of Us II’ due for release later this year. In addition to phenomenal sales, the game garnered critical acclaim across the board, picking up over 200 awards, including many Game Of The Year accolades.
“This is an incredibly exciting opportunity for us to partner with Craig, Neil, Carolyn and the teams at Sony, Naughty Dog and PlayStation to bring the virtual world of this acclaimed game to life,” adds HBO programming president Casey Bloys.
No news yet on when ‘The Last of Us’ tv series will drop as it’s only just been announced, and could still end up in development hell, but we’ll let you know when we hear more. ‘The Last of Us II’ game is scheduled for release Friday, 29th May 2020 on PS4.
Dave has over 20 years experience in the digital industry, and is founder and editor of Geektown. Obviously a huge geek himself, he can often be found in front of the latest tv show or movie, on various video games, or with his head in a comic book.