New info suggested The Last of Us Season 2's release could be delayed amid the ongoing writer strike in Hollywood.
HBO's hit PlayStation adaptation is coming back, after a debut season earlier this year on the network.
Early indications were that the sophomore batch of episodes would be coming sooner rather than later, with the star of the series, Bella Ramsey, recently remarking that Season 2 could release by the "end of 2024 [or] early 2025."
Filming for the series will take place in Vancouver, Canada, with actor Pedro Pascal having teased "there is a chance" cameras start rolling by the end of 2023.
The Last of Us Season 2 Coming Later Than Expected
Following a production update from Variety, it's now expected that The Last of Us Season 2 will release later than many had anticipated.
In a story from the outlet revealing that the audition process for the series had been paused due to the ongoing Writers Guild of America strike, it was noted that filming for Season 2 will likely kick off in early 2024 in Vancourver.
This is somewhat surprising considering that game creator Neil Druckmann shared weeks back that the show was "months... away from starting" production, reinforcing expectations that the second season was on track for a late 2023 filming start.
Given that the first season of the hit zombie drama took approximately 18 months to turn around between the beginning of shooting and its HBO Max premiere, this updated early 2024 filming start would postpone Season 2's assumed release window from late 2024 / early 2025 release to early-to-mid 2025.
Variety also noted that Season 2 does not yet have any scripts written and that the casting process for the series was using sides from The Last of Us Part II video game on which Season 2 will be based on.
When Will The Last of Us Season 2 Release?
As Bella Ramsey opined mere weeks ago, the intention may have been for The Last of Us Season 2 to begin shooting "at the end of this year," but seems to no longer be the case.
The Last of Us was right in that sweet spot, where the WGA strike was going to affect it no matter what. It was primed and ready it seems to get the ball rolling and go all-in on pre-production, yet with the ongoing work stoppage, that can no longer be the case.
As of right now, a production start push from late 2023 to early 2024 is not the biggest deal, assumedly only moving Season 2's debut by a couple of months. What will be more concerning is if the WGA strike continues as long as some pundits are pontificating it will.
Co-founder of entertainment law firm JSSK Tara Kole was recently quoted by The New York Times as saying, "Any hope that [the work stoppage] would be fast has faded. I hate to say it, but it’s going to be a while," with some expecting the strike to go as long as the fall or even into this winter.
The longer this labor dispute goes on, the further out The Last of Us Season 2 will get pushed, as it seems showrunners Craig Mazin and Neil Druckmann have not only stopped their writing duties but working on the show entirely.
The Last of Us Season 1 can be streamed in its entirety now on HBO Max.