The Last of Us short film Stay is a heart-wrenching story created by fans

The Last of Us short film Stay
(Image credit: Joshua Toonen)

The Last of Us fan film Stay shows how other people in the game’s universe handled the Cordyceps virus outbreak.

The film was created by Joshua Toonen, who took learnings from working on Hollywood movies including Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker and teamed up with 40 or so other filmmakers - including VFX artists, special effects makeup artists, and more - to make a short film inspired by The Last of Us. 

In the short, young couple Sean and Emily’s story is told during two different time periods. One is set before the virus outbreak, and the second in the midst of it. The pair have plans to travel to Santa Monica when it’s assumed the virus breaks out. 

Ellie also makes an appearance at the start and the end of the short film and is easily identifiable by her now-iconic forearm tattoo and guitar playing skills. This heart-wrenching story shows just how brutal it can be to try and endure and survive in Naughty Dog’s post-apocalyptic universe and even recreates some of the iconic scenes from the game. 

If you were ever curious as to what Clickers would look like in real life, look no further as the couple in Stay encounter several of the horrifying infected which look even freakier than they did in the game. Even this realistic Clicker cosplay couldn’t have prepared us for how these fungus-filled monsters appear in "real life." 

If fans of The Last of Us enjoyed this live-action film, there’s good news. Work is currently underway on a The Last Of Us TV show which has already cast The Mandalorian’s Pedro Pascal as Joel and Game of Thrones star Bella Ramsey as Ellie. Filming has already begun on the series which will apparently deviate greatly from the game’s story at times, it will reportedly run for 10 episodes, and is rumored to release in 2022

If The Last of Us TV show ends up being anywhere near as compelling as Stay, fans have a lot to look forward to when it does eventually release. 

Want to see more The Last of Us fan films? Take a look at the first trailer for Spores, another The Last of Us short film

Hope Bellingham
News Writer

After studying Film Studies and Creative Writing at university, I was lucky enough to land a job as an intern at Player Two PR where I helped to release a number of indie titles. I then got even luckier when I became a Trainee News Writer at GamesRadar+ before being promoted to a fully-fledged News Writer after a year and a half of training.  My expertise lies in Animal Crossing: New Horizons, cozy indies, and The Last of Us, but especially in the Kingdom Hearts series. I'm also known to write about the odd Korean drama for the Entertainment team every now and then.