HBO Max

The Last of Us: the original intro scene of the series was much more terrifying and visual

Craig Mazin, co-creator of the series, explains how they originally designed the haunting opening scene, which was different from the one that was made.

The Last of Us, the new and celebrated HBO Max series based on Naughty Dog's video game, is already perceived by critics and audiences as one of the best -if not the best- adaptation of a game to the audiovisual format. And it is precisely the ability shown by the series itself to be very faithful to the original work and, in turn, deepen and present certain additions and changes that bring much more, both for fans of the video game and for those who are now discovering the story of Joel and Ellie.

One of these new elements is none other than the sensational introductory scene in which we are given a historical context from the point of view of some scientists, something that was never part of the original game. And while that scene is already quite disturbing, now it has come to light how it could have been the introduction to the series: even more terrifying and visual. Spoilers for the first episode of The Last of Us are warned in the following paragraph.

The Last of Us: this is what the original opening scene was like

As those who have seen the first episode of The Last of Us series already know, the series starts with a scene that could be very real. In it, we travel to a television set in the late 1960s where two scientists are discussing possible pandemics that could wipe out humanity in the future. And beyond the classic viruses and bacteria, one of the two scientists (John Hannh) puts fungi on the table, a hypothesis that is initially laughed at but that little by little, and thanks to the scientist's speech, begins to provoke fear among those attending the show.

However, this first scene -which is totally original, since it does not appear in the video game- could have been very different. This has been explained by the co-creator of the series Craig Mazin through the official podcast of The Last of Us on HBO Max, ensuring that at first they thought of a scene as a documentary, much more visual and terrifying: "We can do the video. It’s Planet Earth, you can watch this beautiful demonstration of how cordyceps works, how it takes over an ant. It tells you everything you need to know. What we decided to do was make our own video like that," Mazin explains.

Although the idea was quickly diluted, as Neil Druckmann thought that this introduction could be boring, betting on something more dynamic like the one that ended up being shot: "When I saw the final edited version, I loved it. As a fan, it catches you off guard and already signals to you: everything you think you know about this, you don't know about. It achieved what we were trying to achieve with that other opening in a much more effective, dramatised way that starts giving you clues or theories of 'maybe this is how it started.' ' We're not saying it definitively, but it's a pretty good theory," he concludes.

Source | Total Film via GamesRadar