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The Last of Us Creator Refused Sam Raimi’s Film Adaptation, Wanted ‘No Country For Old Men’ Style Instead of Sexier ‘World War Z’ Tone

sam raimi the last of us

There is no doubt that The Last of Us is one of the most popular video games currently on the market. With a great storyline, immersive gameplay and stunning graphics, the game has won over many fans. This is why, fans are super excited to see their favorite video game come to life with HBO’s series, The Last of Us, releasing soon in January.

The Last of Us
The Last of Us

The developer of the video game, Naughty Dog, has been known for having a hint of cinematic storytelling in their games which can easily be seen in the post-apocalyptical world in The Last of Us. Before the HBO series though, there were some rumors flying around about a movie based on the video game. However, as we all know by now that didn’t come to fruition. Here’s why.

Also Read: The Last of Us Reportedly Developing a Third Part as Live-Action HBO Adaptation With Pedro Pascal Premiers Next Month

What Happened to The Last of Us film?

Neil Druckmann
Neil Druckmann

Also Read: “Keep it that way”: The Last of Us Star Bella Ramsey Was Asked By HBO Not to Play the Video Game, Fans Believe Show Heading Towards Disaster

After the video game’s release in 2013, its popularity sky-rocketed so much so that just a year later, there were reports about a Sam Raimi-directed movie based on The Last of Us. While the live-action adaptation never became a reality, fans were left pondering what happened to the movie. Well, as it turns out, game director Neil Druckmann had his doubts about the Screen Gems studios.

According to The New Yorker, Druckmann believed that Screen Gems, a Sony subsidiary, was more inclined towards making “A particular kind of movie.” While the game director fully respects Raimi, he was simply unsure about the executives who were involved and asked for bigger and “Sexier” things. While Druckmann was more into a No Country for Old Men vibe, the studios wanted a World War Z tone. Druckmann was also concerned that there was absolutely no way fifteen-hour-long gameplay could be justified in a two-hour frame.

Also Read: “I don’t think I ever had a shot”: Supernatural Star Jensen Ackles Pushed Hard For The Last of Us, Devastated After Losing Role to Pedro Pascal

Neil Druckmann Preferred Craig Mazin for the Adaptation

PEdro Pascal
Pedro Pascal in The Last of Us

According to Druckmann, a great adaptation is one that could potentially open up the world of video games to a newer audience, one that puts storytelling in high regard.

“[A truly great adaptation could] enlighten this whole other audience that cares about storytelling and hasn’t realized there’s amazing storytelling happening in games.”

He saw his vision come alive in Craig Mazin, creator of Chernobyl (2019). When Druckmann realized that Mazin had an interest in turning his video game into a series rather than a full-length movie, the former was all in for the idea. Druckmann told the Sony executives, “Wait, the Chernobyl guy? Why can’t I meet with him?”

Since then, the two embarked on the journey, bringing the fan-favorite video game to life and introducing The Last of Us to a broader audience. Druckmann teased that the upcoming series is the “Best, most authentic game adaptation.”

The HBO series, even though adapted from the video game, will have fresher content for the fans as Druckmann has made it quite clear that the series will be a bit different than the game. The series will star Bella Ramsey as Ellie, Pedro Pascal as Joel, and Anna Torv as Tess. With Druckmann working on the show along with Mazin, it’s safe to say the adaptation is going to be an entertaining watch!

The Last of Us will be released on HBO on January 15, 2023.

Source: The New Yorker

Written by Mishkaat Khan

Mishkaat is a medical student who found solace in content writing. Having worked in the industry for about three years, she has written about everything from medicine to literature and is now happy to enlight you about the world of entertainment. When not writing, she can be found obsessing over supernatural beings through books and TV.