Neil Druckmann has shared some new insight into his work on The Last of Us HBO series (opens in new tab), in particular the lateral thinking it takes to adapt an interactive story for TV.
Druckmann spoke about his work across The Last of Us franchise, from the original game to the HBO series to The Last of Us 2 (opens in new tab), in an interview with Entertainment Weekly (opens in new tab). In the upcoming game that's set to arrive on June 19, Druckmann says Naughty Dog wanted to know if it could "make you feel hate, guilt, shame" - all of which you "can't quite do" in films or TV. Setting out to work on the TV series meant Druckmann had to think about how to communicate the story's ideas in a different way.
"In removing the interactivity of the story, how do you make it unique for this other medium? It's an interesting challenge, and I think there's a lot to learn from it," Druckmann said. "More specifically with the show, I got to meet Craig Mazin. I'm a huge fan of Chernobyl, and to find someone who's equally a fan of the work we've done… Craig had ideas about how to adapt the show, it became intriguing to work with another creative who I admire. It just became a no-brainer - and to do it under the umbrella of HBO and all their content."
There's no timetable on when The Last of Us HBO series will arrive or when it will cast its lead roles (though Troy Baker, who plays Joel in the games, says HBO's coming at it "from a fan's perspective" (opens in new tab) ). Druckmann and Mazin have confirmed that it will adapt the events of the first game, and it may even continue onward to the events of The Last of Us 2 if it's successful.
We got to take one last early look at The Last of Us 2 in our final preview (opens in new tab).