A movie adaptation of Naughty Dog’s sublime The Last of Us was announced in 2014, and it’s fair to say that work on the project has moved at a glacial pace.
Naughty Dog scribe Neil Druckmann (who wrote the game and is working on the movie) revealed that there was a table read recently, and Game of Thrones actor Maisie Williams had expressed interest in playing Ellie.
Despite this, it seems that – at least according to Druckmann – the film is currently stuck in development hell, which is not a good place for a film to be.
One of the producers on The Last of Us is Sam Raimi (Spider-Man, Evil Dead). He recently spoke to IGN, revealing that things with the project are a little complicated right now.
As it turns out, Druckmann took the rights to The Last of Us directly to Sony, rather than of Raimi’s own Ghost House pictures, which makes things a touch murky.
With this one he went to Sony–who I have a very good relationship with–but they have their own plans for it and I think Neil’s plan for it. I’m not trying to be political; Neil’s plan for it is not the same as Sony’s. And because my company doesn’t have the rights, I actually can’t help him too much. Even though I’m one of the producers on it the way he set it up, he sold his rights to Sony, Sony hired me as a producer by chance, and I can’t get the rights free for him so I’m not in the driver’s seat and I can’t tell you what Sony and Neil together will decide on. If they do move forward I’d love to help them again.
Raimi did reaffirm that he is still a part of The Last of Us movie, but joked that he’s ‘not too sure what that means’, adding that the film is ‘just sitting there’ right now.
The director/producer elaborated:
They don’t want to move forward, and it’s not my place to say why, and Neil, I think, is in a slight disagreement with them about how things should go so there’s a standstill. And I don’t have the power to move it.
While The Last Of Us continues to stall, it seems that at least one other Naughty Dog property is finally heading to the big screen, as work on the Uncharted movie has finally kicked up a gear.
Ewan Moore is a journalist at UNILAD Gaming who still quite hasn’t gotten out of his mid 00’s emo phase. After graduating from the University of Portsmouth in 2015 with a BA in Journalism & Media Studies (thanks for asking), he went on to do some freelance words for various places, including Kotaku, Den of Geek, and TheSixthAxis, before landing a full time gig at UNILAD in 2016.