‘The Last Of Us’: Jasmila Žbanić & Ali Abbasi To Direct HBO Series Based On Video Game

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Denise Petski
·2 min read
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Oscar nominee Jasmila Žbanić (Quo vadis, Aida) and Ali Abbasi (Border) have been added as directors on The Last of Us, HBO’s high-profile series adaptation of the Sony Playstation franchise from Chernobyl creator Craig Mazin and Neil Druckmann.

Based on the critically acclaimed video game The Last of Us, starring Pedro Pascal and Bella Ramsey, the story takes place twenty years after modern civilization has been destroyed. Joel (Pascal), a hardened survivor, is hired to smuggle Ellie (Ramsey), 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 across the U.S. and depend on each other for survival.

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Kantemir Balagov is directing the pilot episode of The Last Of Us, a co-production with Sony Pictures Television. PlayStation Productions, Word Games, The Mighty Mint, and Naughty Dog produce the TV series, based on the video game developed by Naughty Dog exclusively for the PlayStation platforms.

Druckmann and Mazin write and executive produce; Carolyn Strauss also executive produces along with Naughty Dog president Evan Wells, Asad Qizilbash and Carter Swan of PlayStation Productions as well as Rose Lam.

Žbanić’s latest film, Quo vadis, Aida is nominated for the Best International Film Feature Oscar at Sunday’s Academy Awards. Last night, the film won the Film Independent Spirit Award for Best International Film. Žbanić is repped by CAA and Good Chaos.

Abbasi won the Cannes Film Festival’s Un Certain Regard Award for directing in 2018 for his film Border, also known as Gräns. (The Last of Us pilot director Balagov won the same award in 2019 for his film Beanpole, also known as Dylda.) Abbasi is repped by CAA, Management 360 and Independent Talent Group.

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