The Last of Us star Gabriel Luna reveals how fans recognize him more as Tommy from the hit apocalyptic HBO series rather than his famed role in Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD. He confessed feeling great about this association and even shared an epiphany about the roles he has portrayed in the past.
Luna played the younger brother of Pedro Pascal’s Joel Miller, the main protagonist in The Last of Us. But even before he joined the franchise, the actor has been forging his own name through several famous titles such as Matador, Wicked City, and Terminator: Dark Fate, to name a few.
Gabriel Luna Shares Interesting Realization About His Past Roles
In an interview with Deadline, Gabriel Luna shared fans’ reactions upon meeting him:
“Mostly people screaming, ‘Tommy!’ while I’m walking down the street. That’s been great.”
The actor is seemingly referring to one of the episodes in The Last of Us where Joel was trying to find Tommy. Luna only appeared in two episodes: this reference to “Kin” and “When You’re Alone in the Darkness.”
Reflecting on his past roles, Luna said most of the names of his characters had some sort of rhyme:
“I played a lot of characters like Robbie, the Ghost Rider. I played a lot of Eddie for some reason. Now I played Tommy, every character I play I think has some kind of nickname or has -ie or -y. But no, mostly it’s just people yelling ‘Tommy’ at me, which is fun.”
Luna’s performance in The Last of Us was highly regarded by fans, and his chemistry with Pascal onscreen made a more compelling story between two brothers who share a genuine love for each other.
While viewers remember him as Tommy, Luna’s big break happened in 2011 when he appeared on Richard Linklater’s Bernie. The movie opened several doors for him in the industry following a collaboration with an ensemble cast and a respected filmmaker. After numerous projects in between, the actor soon joined the realm of superheroes in the fourth season of Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD.
His role as Robbie Reyes, also known as Ghost Rider, was highly anticipated by fans. Nicolas Cage’s movie portrayal was met with a lot of controversy; thus, the pressure to live up to fans’ expectations was something that Luna had to meet. Surprisingly, his interpretation of Ghost Rider became a fan favorite that a spin-off series was reportedly brewing at the headquarters. The project, however, did not materialize.
How Gabriel Luna Prepared For His Role In The Last Of Us
“I played the games back to back. It took me a long time because it’s a very dense story, and it’s also very emotionally taxing… I’m that kind of person [who searches] every nook and cranny, and then I become just complete.”
Indeed, Luna’s preparation for the role and passion for the franchise enabled him to fully understand the depth of the narrative and bring real emotion into a world deprived of hope and life.