When I saw the first trailer for The Last of Us, I don't think I was alone in being shocked at how close the original character model for Ellie resembled Ellen Page. She sounded like her, had the same mannerisms, almost delivered dialogue in the exact same. I actually thought the character was voiced by Ellen Page to begin with.
Then Naughty Dog made a couple of changes to Ellie's facial features, which made her look a little less like Ellen. I assumed it was in response to Beyond: Two Souls, which actually legitimately stars Ellen Page.
But still, Ellie looks and acts like Ellen Page (despite being voiced by voice actress Ashley Johnson). The character is clearly inspired by her performances in other movies.
Now, in a Reddit Ask Me Anything, one user asked Ellen what she thought of the Ellie character in The Last Of Us.
This has almost certainly been made clear to you several times, but are you aware how much you look like Ellie from "The Last of Us," a video game which came out about a week ago. She even sounds like you. So much so that almost everyone assumed it was you playing the role. Which leads me to my questions:
How did you like playing the role of a video game character when doing "Beyond: Two Souls?" Do you prefer live action? Have you seen any footage of "The Last of Us" and would you have taken the role as Ellie if approached?
To which Ellen answered...
I guess I should be flattered that they ripped off my likeness, but I am actually acting in a video game called Beyond Two Souls, so it was not appreciated.
Considering both The Last Of Us and Beyond: Two Souls are PlayStation exclusives published by Sony, I was actually surprised at the response. But she's right — as good as The Last Of Us is, it's a pretty blatant appropriation.