Who will be cast in The Last of Us?
We're not sure if you heard about this, but Sony Pictures is turning The Last of Us into a major motion picture. I can't think of a game more deserving, but hearing the news does raise a lot of questions. Namely, who's going to play all of the magnificent roles in the game? There's a ton of great actors and actresses out there, all of whom could find a spot in this cast.
If I was put in charge of casting and granted a endless amount of funds to pay these actors, I know exactly who I'd choose for Joel, Ellie, and the rest. It might be sky-based pie thinking, but I truly think the names on this list would give us an excellent representation of the game so many of us loved last year.
Josh Brolin as Joel
Joel is a survivor; a rugged man willing to get his hands dirty if the need arises. Also, hes seen some things in this horror that he lives, and those memories carry on with him. I can see no better person to fill this role than Jonah Hex himself, Josh Brolin. If he channels some Tom Chaney from True Grit into his performance, I'd think Joel himself would have jumped out of the television and onto the big screen. It just makes sense.
Madison Lintz as Sarah
We didnt really spend a ton of time with Madison Lintz in her most famous role on The Walking Dead, but in that season we loved the charm that she brought to the character. Sophia has a lot in common with Joels daughter Sarah: theyre both not around very long, but damn if I dont remember them whenever I continue watching/playing.
Ariel Winter as Ellie
This might be the hardest role to cast in the whole movie. Ellie is a tough girl with quite the potty mouth, but shes still a young girl at her core, and whoever played her would have to play both sides of the same coin. Ariel Winter may seem like an odd choice considering her recurring comedic role on Modern Family, but shes certainly well-rounded; check her performance in One Missed Call or the last few episodes of ER and youll see what I mean.
Julianne Moore as Tess
Tesss street smarts and dog-eat-dog philosophy would be portrayed brilliantly by Julianne Moore, who has played more roles than I can wrap my head around. From Children of Men to Boogie Nights, this Oscar-nominated actress has shown she can handle anything thrown at her. Also, shes notorious for reading every script she receives, whether she accepts them or not, and I cant imagine her turning down this story after reading through it. As one of only ten people nominated for both Supporting Actress and Lead Actress in the same year, shes proven we can trust her abilities.
Jeremy Renner as Robert
For those who dont recall, Robert is the cowardly arms dealer who screws over Joel and Tess by selling their guns to the Fireflies, then tries to kill the two when they come calling for their wares. Hes an arrogant, slimy little shit right until the end, and Id love to see Jeremy Renner take a shot at it. Renner has played a lot of heroic types lately, like Hawkeye in The Avengers or Hansel in Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters, but I think he could totally make me hate Robert like I should.
Viggo Mortensen as Bill
Bill might be my favorite character in the entire game outside of Joel and Ellie. The crazy bastard has an entire town to himself, fortified with deadly traps designed to keep the infected as far away as possible. When I see Bill and watch through his scenes, I cant help but think of The Road, a 2009 film where Viggo Mortensen tries to survive in a post-apocalyptic world by any means necessary. Sounds familiar, doesnt it? Viggo, meet Bill; I think you two will get along.
Denzel Washington as Henry
We realize that Henry and Sam are brothers in the game, but I feel like in a movie adaptation, father and son would make more sense. Henry fights to keep Sam alive amidst all of the madness as if he were his father anyway, so the transition wouldn't be difficult. Whatever the relation, Henry is a troubled soul doing his best to protect young Sam, and Id want someone who could do this guy justice. Who better than Denzel Washington? Seriously, I'd want no one else to portray Henry; I can even picture Washington in Henrys final scene right now, and its wonderful. Denzel is my guy.
Jaden Smith as Sam
Whether Henry and Sam are brothers or father and son, there needs to be chemistry between the two characters every time theyre on-screen. That requires a young actor used to portraying roles built around the core of that singular relationship. Jaden Smith has done that twice with his own father, Will Smith, but it's time to see whether he can do it without the emotional prop of working with his actual parent. I reckon that if he stepped up, he could make an excellent Sam.
Daniel Day-Lewis as David
I could write the name Daniel Day-Lewis in front of any of the male leads in this game; the man is a chameleon, portraying his characters with a realism unmatched by most other actors today. However, I'd particulary love to see what he could do with David, the creepy cannibal psychopath. I just hope that he wouldnt train for this role like he has before; his level of detail is so extreme, Id worry hed start eating people for real, and that would be very bad.
James Franco as James
James is Davids right hand man, doing everything his partner tells him to do. Hes just as ruthless as his lover, but hes less forgiving of Ellie and Joel after learning what happened at the hospital, telling the entire group of cannibals about it. My James would need to be played by someone who can perfectly compliment Daniel Day-Lewis David, and we think James Franco would be up to the challenge. I loved him as Oz in Oz the Great and Powerful and as Harry Osborn in Spiderman 3 (perhaps the only thing good about that movie), and I think hed play a damn good James.
Michael Fassbender as Tommy
The younger brother of Joel, Tommy is night-and-day different than his older sibling. Hes more level-headed, more strategic, and more willing to think of the needs of the many compared to his own ambition. Because of this, whoever plays Tommy will have to be the yin to Joels yang, and Id love to see Michael Fassbender in the role. This would be even more appropriate if I get my Josh Brolin wish, as two Jonah Hex stars would be reunited in this post-apocalypse.
Carey Mulligan as Maria
Maria is the perfect fit for a calm and collected man like Tommy, making their marriage much more believable. She shares his strength and his resolve, to the point where Joel says that she kind of scares [him]. Carey Mulligan is by no means imposing, but that doesnt mean she couldnt put the fear of God into any man she shares a screen with. Furthermore, after seeing her as Daisy in The Great Gatsby, Id love to see her branch out into something completely different here.
Rosario Dawson as Marlene
I racked my brain trying to come up with the best person to play Marlene. I need to believe that this woman will do whatever it takes to find the vaccine for the infection, even though she struggles with having to make the tough decisions. Whats more, Marlene is a strong African-American woman, and I want to keep her that way in the movie. Give me Rosario Dawson of Sin City and Grindhouse fame, and Im sure well get the Marlene we need.
Who would you choose?
In a perfect world with either an unlimited budget or actors that would work for free, these are the people I would choose to play the biggest parts in The Last of Us. I'm certain that you have some thoughts of your own, so take to the comments below with your picks.
For more on The Last of Us, check out where it sits on our list of the 100 best games ever, or for more Sony sights take a gander at the best PS3 games ever.