Film and Music Electronic Magazine

How the Video Game and TV Show Connect

When Naughty Dog’s The Last of Us was released in 2013, it took the video game world by storm: Here was a game that pushed the envelope both graphically and narratively, telling a heart-wrenching and compelling story that forced mainstream audiences to recognize the medium as another artform.

For many fans, The Last of Us was and continues to be a shining example of video games being able to tell stories just as well, or even better than, movies or television. So, when the news of a TV adaptation broke, the reception was a bit mixed, as video game adaptations often have a negative reputation amongst fans of the genre: Considering how highly acclaimed The Last of Us is, many were afraid that the story wouldn’t translate well, or would be handled badly by people ignorant of the source material.

However, despite fans’ concerns, series showrunner Craig Mazin is confident in the direction of the TV show. Here’s what we know about how the HBO series connects to its source material.

Who Made the Original Games?

The Last of Us was developed by the highly-acclaimed American video game developer Naughty Dog. Formerly known as JAM Software, Naughty Dog was founded by Andy Gavin and Jason Rubin in 1984 in Santa Monica, California before being acquired by Sony Computer Entertainment in 2001.

In its 38-year history, Naughty Dog has pushed the graphical limits of video games, creating breathtaking and visceral worlds for players to enjoy. The game developer has also created multiple highly lucrative game franchises like The Last of Us, Crash Bandicoot, Jak and Dexter, and Uncharted.

Who’s Behind the TV Show?

The Last of Us TV series is a joint production by Sony Pictures Television, PlayStation Productions, Naughty Dog, The Mighty Mint, and Word Games. The series will be overseen by Mazin, the writer best known for creating the hit HBO mini-series Chernobyl, and Neil Druckman, writer and director of the games and co-president of Naughty Dog. HBO has confirmed to Consequence that Mazin directed the first episode of the show, and Druckman directed the second.

Also, Gustavo Alfredo Santaolalla, the Argentine musician, composer, and record producer who composed music for the original games, will be returning to compose music for the series.

What Is the Plot of the Games?

The Last of Us series follows the relationship of its two central protagonists, a hardened smuggler named Joel and a young girl named Ellie. The Last of Us Part 1 follows the journey of Joel and Ellie as they trek across a post-apocalyptic United States in search of sanctuary, fighting off infected and hostile survivors alike. The Last of Us Part 2 continues their story into the future, where they face the fallout of the decisions they made in the previous game.

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