HBO’s The Last of Us series is returning for a second season, and there will be a time jump. But the network is not going to recast actress Bella Ramsey.
Naughty Dog’s Neil Druckmann, who is also a writer on the TV series, said during a roundtable interview with press that the only way the team would consider recasting Ellie would be if Ramsey wanted to leave the series. “Even then, I’m not sure we would grant her that. We might still force her to come back to Season 2,” he joked, as reported by IGN.
Druckmann said with the original Last of Us game, Naughty Dog got “incredibly lucky” to find actress Ashley Johnson. And then for the TV series, Druckmann said “somehow we got lighting in a bottle again with Bella.”
Showrunner Craig Mazin pointed out that Ramsey is now 19 years old, which is the same age as Ellie in The Last of Us Part II. The second season will begin filming this year, and if cameras start rolling before September 30, at least some of the series will be filmed while Ramsey is the same age as the character she is playing. Ramsey turns 20 on September 30.
The Last of Us Part II picks up five years after the first game, and the TV series is expected to adopt that time jump as well. Season 2 will have some “radically” different changes from the game, though. It’s also been confirmed that Season 2 will not tell the entire story of The Last of Us Part II, which suggests a third season might be coming next.
For more on HBO’s The Last of Us, check out what Marlene actress Merle Dandridge had to say about the heartbreaking season finale.
As for the game series, Naughty Dog is making a new The Last of Us multiplayer game. After that, Naughty Dog might make The Last of Us Part III, or it might not.