After the release of the first episode of HBO’s latest venture, “The Last of Us,” it received rave reviews from audiences and critics alike. The show was also on IMDb’s most anticipated list for 2023, and after the release of its first episode, it started trending as the top user-rated and one of the most popular titles. The series is a live-action adaptation of the critically acclaimed and best-selling Naughty Dog video game of the same title. And the spectacular pilot episode turned out to be a phenomenon throughout the globe. The game was released in 2013 for PS3 and instantly became an overnight success. All thanks to the world-building and intense suspense attached to it. And the makers worked really hard on minute details so that the story could transpire seamlessly in an entirely different medium. The stars of the show, Pedro Pascal and Bella Ramsey, along with the show’s co-creator, Neil Druckmann, and others, sat down for an interview with IMDb to share their individual experiences of shooting and talk about their dream team for an apocalyptic situation.
Who Would Be On Their Apocalypse Dream Team?
Pedro Pascal’s apocalypse dream team includes Michelle Obama and Indiana Jones, but it seems the fan favorite The Mandalorian star wanted to add more people to the team but couldn’t come up with any names other than these two. His on-screen daughter, Nico Parker, wanted Amal Clooney, the charming and witty wife of George Clooney, on her team. Other than Amal, she also wanted to have her sister and the co-creator of the show, Neil Druckmann, on her team, as, according to her, they would know exactly what to do in such dire circumstances.
What Are The Three Essential Things Needed To Survive A Mutant Fungal-Infected Apocalypse?
Bella Ramsey, or Ellie from the show, replies to this question by saying that she only needs sharp wit to survive the apocalypse, though we don’t clearly know from the show whether the infection slows down depending on one’s intelligence or not. Merle Dandridge, or Marlene, from both the show and the video game, thinks she needs a water purifier and a blade for her survival. In addition to that, actor Pedro Pascal thinks that only a sharp object would do the job. But the co-creator of the show, Neil, gave the most distinct answer among the bunch. He requires a book of jokes in case he is surrounded by a bunch of post-apocalyptic madmen who have guns pointed at him. He would prefer not to start fighting them; instead, he would take out the joke book to read them a few jokes to lighten the tension and survive the uneven standoff.
What Is Their Favorite Behind-The-Scenes Moment?
When asked about their individual favorite BTS moments, Nico, who plays Sarah, Joel’s daughter, in the series, recalls some extremely funny moments involving her on-screen father. She remembers Pedro making her laugh until she cried in between scenes and playing various pranks on the cast and crew of the show. Pascal laughingly remembers how they used to spread “contagious giggles” on set that were way more infectious than the fictional mutated cordyceps fungus that we get to see on the show. Their laugh riots would hamper the shooting for hours and even affected their flow of performance sometimes. Their gags went to such lengths that it seemed to have angered the crew so much so that it felt like they wanted to kill the cast, the star recollects laughingly. And the situation made them laugh even more. Bella, who plays the character Ellie, cackles after remembering those incidents. She menacingly adds that it was really funny to watch them suffer while they kept on laughing. It seems that her on-screen persona is not that different from her real identity.
Listening to the interview, it is pretty evident that the entire cast and crew had a ball while shooting for the show. Though the tone and aesthetics of the series are poles apart from their off-screen attitudes, it would be wrong if we didn’t mention that the actors put a lot of effort into fleshing out the characters. Their individual struggles resonates with us, and even the minor characters from the show successfully presented their point of view in front of us, which makes them more relatable. While talking with the press, they seem pretty relaxed, probably because they have huge confidence in the end product. The actors bonded really well while filming the series, and it shows heavily in their on-screen personas. It works especially for Pedro and Bella, who have become almost buddies despite their huge age gap, probably because Pedro treats Bella more as his co-star than as a mere child actor. This connection between them can be seen in the character dynamics of their virtual identities, Joel and Ellie. After releasing a total of only three episodes, “The Last of Us” is moving forward without any visible competitors so far.
The fourth episode of “The Last of Us” will directly air on HBO and start streaming on HBO Max on February 5, 2023.