Another huge show is delayed on all fronts due to the writers’ strike, and this time it’s HBO’s The Last of Us, a stark contrast to the same channel’s House of Dragons, which is continuing with Season 2 despite the strike, claiming its scripts are already written.
It’s no big shock to learn that The Last of Us Season 2 shutdown on all fronts, with Craig Mazin himself picketing for a strike. His co-creator/writer Neil Druckmann has also stopped working on the series in any capacity, including producing, even not just writing duties.
One major thing that was cut was the casting. The original plan was for the actors to read lines at the audition taken directly from the game’s existing sequel, PlayStation’s The Last of Us Part II, since there were no actual HBO show scripts to read. But now that idea seems to have been scrapped as well everything shuts down due to strike.
It remains unclear if The Last of Us has cast the biggest role in the second season so far, that of Abby, who will essentially be the show’s co-host for the next season. Considering they saw hundreds of actresses to find Bella Ramsey for Ellie, it makes sense that they might go through a similar amount for Abby, who probably won’t be the big star that Pedro Pascal was for Joel.
As for what this will do with the release date, it’s probably going to be pretty dark. Already, this was probably the kind of show that would push 1.5, 2 years between seasons, given its scope, so that would put it anywhere from early fall 2024 to winter 2025 with the first season releasing last January . We don’t know how long the writers’ strike will continue, but it could easily lead to another 6+ months of delays if things aren’t resolved.
To be clear, this is not a call to end the strike sooner so we can get a second season of The Last of Us sooner. The writers who work on these streaming series absolutely deserve everything they’re asking for, from leftovers to AI protection, but they’re definitely going to do some very significant things to the production schedules, and even though it can really feel a little bit like Late Night TV right now , it will heavily influence massive television in the medium to long term future, including The Last of Us.
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Forbes – Innovation