Beanpole Director Kantemir Balagov Joins HBO’s The Last of Us
Last year, Russian director Kantemir Balagov made big waves with his latest film, Beanpole, which follows the plight of two young women in post-WWII Leningrad. Now, it looks like Balagov has chosen a similarly bleak story for his next project. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Balagov will helm the pilot episode for HBO’s The Last of Us.
The adaptation of Naughty Dog’s post-apocalyptic video game comes from Chernobyl’s Craig Mazin and the original game’s writer, Neil Druckmann. Mazin was previously going to reunite with his Chernobyl director Johan Renck on the series’ pilot. However, Renck was recently forced to leave the show due to a scheduling conflict. Earlier this week, it was announced that Renck is teaming up with The Queen’s Gambit writer/director Scott Frank on The Sparrow, a new sci-fi series for FX.
Balagov made his feature directorial debut with Closeness in 2017. After premiering Beanpole at the Cannes Film Festival in late 2019, he won the Un Certain Regard Best Director Award. The film was also selected as the Russian entry for Best International Feature Film at this year’s Oscars.
Needless to say, the last few months have been good to the Last of Us franchise. In November, HBO finally gave Mazin and Druckmann’s TV show a full series order. The following month, the game’s sequel, The Last of Us Part II, swept the 2020 Game Awards ceremony with eight wins, including one for Game of the Year.
HBO still hasn’t set a release date for The Last of Us.
Are you excited to see what Balagov brings to the series? Tell us what you think in the comment section below!
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