The Last of Us survives another season.
HBO's hit post-apocalyptic series is an adaptation of NaughtyDog's 2013 PlayStation video game of the same name and chronicles a fungal-induced pandemic in the United States ravaged by infected, cannibalistic creatures.
The Last of Us was renewed for a second installment after its creators had "defined a genre with their masterful debut season," said head of HBO Drama Series and Films Francesca Orsi in a statement at the beginning of this year.
"After pulling off this unforgettable first season, I can't wait to watch this team outshine themselves again with Season 2," she confirmed after the release of two episodes following the series premiere on Jan. 15.
Since its release, the Pedro Pascal and Bella Ramsey-led series has shattered records, drawing 4.7M viewers across linear and HBO Max. It marked the largest debut after House of the Dragon since Boardwalk Empire launched in 2010.
"I'm humbled, honored and frankly overwhelmed that so many people have tuned in and connected with our retelling of Joel (played by Pascal) and Ellie's (played by Ramsey) journey," executive producer Neil Druckmann said in a statement.
"The collaboration with Craig Mazin, our incredible cast and crew, and HBO exceeded my already high expectations. Now we have the absolute pleasure of being able to do it again with season two!" he added. (Druckmann and Mazin also serve as showrunners and co-writers).
Here's everything we know about The Last of Us season 2 so far.
What will The Last of Us season 2 be about?
While The Last of Us Season was renewed for a second season in early 2023, few details have been disclosed about the creative direction of the upcoming installment. However, showrunners Druckmann and Mazin hinted in a Hollywood Reporter cover story that it's likely to chronicle the contents of the second game in the video game series.
"I'm so grateful to Neil Druckmann and HBO for our partnership, and I'm even more grateful to the millions of people who have joined us on this journey," Mazin said about the renewal. "The audience has given us the chance to continue, and as a fan of the characters and world Neil and Naughty Dog created, I couldn't be more ready to dive back in."
Season 1 was closely aligned with part one of the video game, following hardened smuggler Joel's tasked attempt at transporting young Ellie — who he believes holds the cure to the fungal infection that ended the world — across the post-apocalyptic United States.
Although it remains unclear how closely season 2 will align with part two of the video game, Ramsey (who identifies as gender fluid) briefly teased a plot point she's looking forward to when speaking on the Happy Sad Confused podcast.
Who's in The Last of Us season 2 cast?
Ramsey confirmed to W that she is reprising their starring role as Ellie. But in the meantime, the actress will be appearing in other projects before season 2 begins filming.
Also expected to make a return is Pascal as Joel. While the casting news has yet to be confirmed, the actor has spoken about filming a second season in previous interviews.
While Ramsey's Ellie and Pascal's Joel are the stars in The Last of Us season 1, the second installment is expected to spotlight another character — the aforementioned Dina, revealed by Ramsey.
In fact, fans of the video game have already started to speculate that the glimpse of a young girl curiously watching Ellie from afar in episode 6 is Dina (credited as Paolina van Kleef) — who they predict will be the main character in the upcoming season, based on the video game's flow.
Is there a trailer for The Last of Us season 2?
A trailer has yet to be released for The Last of Us season 2. If the timeline is anything like season 1, fans can expect the drop of a full trailer approximately one month ahead of the second installment's premiere.
When will The Last of Us season 2 premiere?
Although The Last of Us season 2 has yet to be given a premiere date, Pascal teased to Collider that "there is a chance" that filming for the new season could start this year.
Will there be a season 3 of The Last of Us?
Prior to the season 2 confirmation news, Mazin told Collider that he and Druckmann don't see The Last of Us as a series that runs for seasons upon seasons. But, he did reveal that the "remaining story [in The Last of Us Part II] would take us more than a season to tell."
Meanwhile, Druckmann elaborated on each season's length, saying, "I remember, early on, I asked Craig and HBO, 'How many episodes does this season need to be' And the answer was, 'As many as the story requires, and no more.' And likewise, that would be our approach for future seasons to say, 'Okay, this will be as many seasons as required to reach that ending, and no more.'"
In a more recent interview with GQ, Mazin and Druckmann further confirmed that the events of the video game's "Part II" will span more than one season. In fact, Mazin said there is "no way" season 2 of The Last of Us could chronicle the entire story that "Part II" tells.
Druckmann added, ""It's more than one season." While they didn't reveal exactly how many seasons "Part II" would make up, Mazin confirmed that it would be "more than one."