Fallout TV creators say it’s basically Fallout 5 and talk the pressure of The Last of Us' success

Total Film exclusive image: Fallout
(Image credit: Prime Video/Total Film)

The Fallout TV show isn't going to be a mere adaptation of the beloved post-apocalyptic video game series. Instead, the Prime Video series - which stars Ella Purnell and Walton Goggins - is going to have its own canonical space in the nuclear wasteland, a freeing choice that has led executive producer Jonathan Nolan to say the project is "almost like we're Fallout 5".

"From the first conversation with Todd [Howard, game director of Fallout 3 & 4, and an executive producer on the show] we were most excited about an original story," Nolan tells Total Film in our new issue out this Friday, which features Road House on the cover. 

To that point, Nolan even throws out a surprising comparison to a previous adaptation in his career: Batman (Nolan worked as a credited writer on The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises alongside brother Christopher Nolan).

"Fallout, in my career, is closest to the work we did in adapting Batman, where there’s so much storytelling in the Batman universe that there is no canonical version of it, so you’re free to invent your own."

Nolan continues, "Each of the [Fallout] games is a discrete story – different city, distinct protagonist – within the same mythology. Our series sits in relation to the games as the games sit in relation to each other. It’s almost like we’re Fallout 5. I don’t want to sound presumptuous, but it’s just a non-interactive version of it, right?"

Fallout, though, arrives in a different television landscape than the one it was conceived in. The Last of Us won the hearts and minds of audiences and awards bodies alike after its 2023 debut and, now, the message is clear after a potted history: video game adaptations can be something more.

"Now there’s an expectation of: 'No, they can actually be great. I watched some good ones,'" says co-showrunner Graham Wagner with a smile. "In a perverse way, I wish there was more snobbery so that we could have been the first!"

Fallout is released on Prime Video on April 12. And you can read more about it and a whole lot else besides in the new issue of Total Film when it hits shelves and digital newsstands on Friday, March 1. This is one day later than usual, due to how the Leap Year falls. 

Check out the covers below:

Total Film's Road House covers

(Image credit: Prime Video/Amazon MGM Studios/Total Film)

Pre-order the issue here to bag your copy, or click here to subscribe to Total Film and never miss another exclusive. You’ll get every issue before it's in stores, and you’ll get subscriber-exclusive covers. 

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(Image credit: Universal/Warner Bros./Prime Video/Amazon MGM Studios/Focus Features)
Bradley Russell

I'm the Senior Entertainment Writer here at GamesRadar+, focusing on news, features, and interviews with some of the biggest names in film and TV. On-site, you'll find me marveling at Marvel and providing analysis and room temperature takes on the newest films, Star Wars and, of course, anime. Outside of GR, I love getting lost in a good 100-hour JRPG, Warzone, and kicking back on the (virtual) field with Football Manager. My work has also been featured in OPM, FourFourTwo, and Game Revolution.

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