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Amid Season 2 time-jump, creators of ‘The Last of Us’ confirm they will not recast Bella Ramsey

Amid Season 2 time-jump, creators of ‘The Last of Us’ confirm they will not recast Bella Ramsey.

The highly anticipated first season of “The Last of Us” came to a heart-wrenching conclusion on Sunday, leaving audiences in awe of its faithful adaptation of the original PlayStation game. Throughout the season, the show has continuously impressed both fans and critics alike, and the finale concluded with a cliffhanger that sets the stage for an intriguing second season.

Those who have played “The Last of Us: Part II” are aware that the story jumps ahead five years after the events of the first game. As a result, some viewers have expressed their desire for the show to recast Bella Ramsey’s character, Ellie, to reflect the age difference between the 14-year-old and 19-year-old versions of the character.

Amid Season 2 time-jump, creators of 'The Last of Us' confirm they will not recast Bella Ramsey.
Bella Ramsey as Ellie in “The Last of Us.” HBO/Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

However, the show’s creators, Craig Mazin and Neil Druckmann, addressed this concern at a recent press conference and confirmed that Bella Ramsey will continue to play Ellie in the upcoming second season. This decision has been met with approval from fans, who are eager to see Ramsey’s outstanding portrayal of the character continue.

Mazin said: “One of the things about the casting process that’s tough is that we invite people to join us on this process, and we know everything [about the secrets of the production] and nobody else knows anything except what they know, which is the game.” 

He added: “We know what we’re gonna do in terms of costume and makeup and hair, but more importantly, we also know the spirit and soul of the actor.”

During the press conference, show creator Craig Mazin addressed some of the initial concerns raised by fans about Bella Ramsey’s casting as Ellie. He revealed that some fans were worried that she did not physically resemble the character from the game. However, Mazin was confident in Ramsey’s acting ability and knew that her performance would win over the audience. “I told them, ‘It doesn’t matter. Watch! Just watch what happens.’ And now they know,” Mazin said.

Moreover, Mazin discussed the second season of “The Last of Us” and revealed that it will diverge from the game in the same way that the first season did. He explained that while the show will stay true to the original story, there will be elements that are different. Mazin gave an example of the devastating episode in the first season that focused on the characters Bill and Frank, which was not present in the game. He hinted that the second season will also include unexpected storylines that will keep fans engaged and emotionally invested in the characters.

He said: “Sometimes it will be different radically, and sometimes it will be [barely] different at all. But it’s going to be different and it will be its own thing. It won’t be exactly like the game. It will be the show that Neil and I want to make. But we are making it with Bella.”

Druckmann also took the time to praise the actor behind Ellie in the game, Ashley Johnson, before noting that Ramsey is equally perfect for the role.

“It was like lightning in the bottle that we found Ashley Johnson and I can’t imagine that version of Ellie being anybody else. And then somehow we got lightning in the bottle again with Bella,” said Druckmann, who also developed the game series.

He added: “The only way we would ever, ever consider re-casting Bella is if she said, ‘I don’t want to work with you guys anymore.’ And even then, we’re not sure we would grant her that. We might still force her to come back to season two.”

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