The new game is out Friday and the TV show has a pilot director. It’s a big week for post-apocalyptic tale The Last of Us.
Speaking to DiscussingFilm, director Johan Renck revealed he’ll be helming the pilot to the video game adaptation as well as executive producing along with game creator Neil Druckman and Craig Mazin. Mazin and Renck previously worked on a different sort of bleak story: the award-winning HBO mini-series Chernobyl.
“It’s an ongoing TV series,” Renck said. “So that’s not something that I will be able to take on to that extent, but I’m part of that series and I will be directing at least the pilot. Then we’ll see how it goes on further. I mean, both Craig and I, we are working with each other again and we will work with each other on other things because we like each other.”
Set in the post-apocalyptic near future, The Last of Us follows a young girl named Ellie who is immune to a deadly zombie virus. She’s escorted across the country by a stranger named Joel and the two develop a father-daughter relationship. Ellie could be the key to a cure that could save millions, and Joel has to decide what’s more important: the fate of the world or the love of this child?
The story then continues in The Last of Us Part II, which is out for PlayStation 4 on Friday. It picks up several years later with Joel and Ellie dealing with the consequences of their actions in the previous game. I’m currently in the process of playing it and, at least 17 hours or so into it, the story somehow ends up being even more gut-wrenching than the first one. And I’m not even done yet.
This, of course, means that Renck and Mazin have plenty of material to work with for an ongoing series. And if they bring the same intensity they did to Chernobyl, The Last of Us could end up being the next Walking Dead.
There’s no word on when Renck will begin shooting the pilot; in the interview, he hints that casting the show is a challenge because the main characters are so recognisable to players. It’s going to be interesting to see who gets chosen, and if HBO moves forward with the series.
We’ll have more on The Last of Us Part II in the coming days and the TV show as it moves along.