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“Hate, guilt, shame […] are interesting feelings that are totally unique to video games”
Naughty Dog vice president and The Last Of Us Part II director Neil Druckmann has addressed the “interesting challenges” faced with adapting the franchise for television.
In a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly, Druckmann spoke about his work across The Last Of Us franchise, from the original game to its upcoming sequel and a planned HBO series, which is currently in its early stages.
According to Druckmann, it’s difficult to make viewers feel “hate, guilt [and] shame” the same way the can through a player’s actions in a video game. “Can we make you feel hate, guilt, shame? Which are interesting feelings that are totally unique to video games. You can’t quite do it in films and TV.”
“In removing the interactivity of the story, how do you make it unique for this other medium? It’s an interesting challenge, and I think there’s a lot to learn from it,” he added.
The HBO adaptation will be produced by Druckmann in collaboration with Chernobyl creator Craig Mazin. “I’m a huge fan of Chernobyl, and to find someone who’s equally a fan of the work we’ve done,” said Druckmann. “Craig had ideas about how to adapt the show, it became intriguing to work with another creative who I admire. It just became a no-brainer – and to do it under the umbrella of HBO and all their content.”
The TV series, which does not have a definitive timeline yet, is set to follow the events of the first game in where the characters Joel and Ellie traverse through a post-apocalyptic America, forging an unforgettable relationship along the way.
The Last Of Us Part II is set to arrive on June 19 exclusively on the PlayStation 4.