The Last of Us premiere night was a booming success. On its first episode, HBO crashed down upon many viewers and fans hyped the long anticipated show, which garnered 4.7 million viewers, landing the show number 2 on HBO’s biggest premieres. However, amid the success of the first episode, The Last of Us game director Bruce Straley demands unionization for the video game industry following HBO not crediting him in the show.
According to an interview with Los Angeles Times, former Naughty Dog director called out The Last of Us for crediting showrunners Neil Druckmann and Craig Mazin, but not him. Check out his full quote below:
“It’s an argument for unionization that someone who was part of the co-creation of that world and those characters isn’t getting a credit or a nickel for the work they put into it,” Straley said, “Maybe we need unions in the video game industry to be able to protect creators.”
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Straley describes his relationship with Sony and Naughty Dog as “strained” in which he left Naughty Dog after the release of Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End (2016), even before HBO produced The Last of Us into a series and had not been credited in the series upon release. However, despite this occurrence, Straley remains to be supportive of The Last of Us, given that it is part of his advocacy for the video game industry to take part in creating darker and more realistic stories.
Straley continued on to share how he and Druckmann were able to come up with the idea of The Last of Us. He described it as “pretty evolutionary” where it was “a game we hadn’t played that we wanted to play.”
“This was a game we hadn’t played that we wanted to play,” Straley shared, “The concept of creating a relationship between two characters that evolves over the course of the game — that’s fully playable — and that got the players more involved with those characters than any other game had before, that was really exciting for us.”
The Last of Us Episode 1 is available to stream on HBO Max. Meanwhile, The Last of Us Episode 2 premieres January 22, 2023 at 9 PM EST / 6 PM PT.