HBO's The Last of Us: Release date, plot, trailer, and all you need to know

Pedro Pascal as Joel in The Last of Us
Pedro Pascal as Joel in The Last of Us (Image via HBO)

The much-awaited post-apocalyptic drama show titled The Last of Us will be released on HBO and HBO Max on Sunday, January 15, 2022, at 9:00 PM ET/PT.

The Last of Us is based on the 2013 video game of the same name developed by Naughty Dog. Pedro Pascal stars as Joel, a middle-aged man who is haunted by a dark past. His job is to smuggle a 14-year-old girl named Ellie, played by Bella Ramsey, across the United States.


Ellie is resistant to the cordyceps infection that wiped off the Earth and may hold the secret to developing the vaccine needed to revive it.

Let's dive into what we know so far about The Last of Us.

Pedro Pascal will earn $600,000 per episode of The Last of Us

The show centers on a post-apocalyptic world twenty years after a strain of cordyceps fungus infects people around the world and causes those who breathe infected spores to become animalistic or zombie-like. In the quarantine zone in Boston, Massachusetts, lives a goon called Joel.

To get by during these trying times, he and his partner Tess must commit petty crimes. They are then given the assignment to smuggle Ellie, a 14-year-old girl, out of the quarantine area. Since Ellie is immune to the disease and the only one who can save the planet, she is unique.

Here’s how HBO is describing the series:

"Based on the critically acclaimed video game The Last of Us, developed by Naughty Dog for the PlayStation platforms, the story takes place twenty years after modern civilization has been destroyed. Joel, a hardened survivor, is hired to smuggle Ellie, a 14-year-old girl, out of an oppressive quarantine zone. What starts as a small job soon becomes a brutal, heartbreaking journey, as they both must traverse the U.S. and depend on each other for survival."

The show's first season will consist of nine episodes with a $10 million splurge on every episode. It will be one of the most expensive shows ever created with show lead, Pedro Pascal, earning $600,000 per episode. Pascal and Ramsey previously appeared together on HBO's Game of Thrones. The entire budget of the show can easily break the $100 Million mark.

The creator of The Last of Us game, Neil Druckmann, spoke to IGN and shed light on the differences between the show and the game. He said:

“HBO’s been great in pushing us to move away from hardcore action to focus more on the drama of the character. Some of my favorite episodes so far have deviated greatly from the story, and I can’t wait for people to see them,”

He continued:

"Things sometimes stay pretty close. It’s funny to see my dialogue there from the games in HBO scripts, and sometimes they deviate greatly to much better effect because we are dealing with a different medium."

Along with Pedro Pascal and Bella Ramsey in the lead roles, here are some other faces appearing in the much-awaited HBO series.

  • Gabriel Luna as Tommy
  • Anna Torv as Tess
  • Merle Dandridge as Marlene
  • Nico Parker as Sarah
  • Murray Bartlett as Frank
  • Nick Offerman as Bill
  • Melanie Lynskey as Kathleen
  • Storm Reid as Riley Abel
  • Jeffrey Pierce as Perry
  • Lamar Johnson as Henry

The Last of Us was created by Craig Mazin and Neil Druckmann with music helmed by Gustavo Santaolalla. Warner Bros. Television Studios is the official distributor of the show.

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Edited by Himanshu Tagore
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