The Last of Us creator Neil Druckmann and series co-creator Craig Mazin have spoken about how early the season finale’s opening scene with Ellie’s mother has been in the works.
Speaking with Empire, Druckmann revealed that the scene with Ellie’s mother, Anna — portrayed by Ashley Johnson, who played Ellie in the game — that shows how Ellie gained her immunity has been planned since shortly after the original game was completed. The idea was originally going to be made into an animated short that never ended up coming together.
“I wrote a script of the moment Ellie’s mom gave birth to her and how she was bitten exactly at that moment and had this dread of, ‘Oh my God, she’s still connected to me, I have to cut the umbilical cord!'” Druckmann stated. “And then not knowing whether she cut it off in time.”
Mazin added that the scene doubles as a way to show that violence, tragedy, and loss have always been part of Ellie’s life, as she was literally born into it.
“There’s just something so gorgeous about Ellie being born in violence, but also from tragedy,” Mazin said. “That from the moment she takes her first breath, she’s losing people. That is the story of Ellie’s life.”
“The live-action series takes place 20 years after modern civilization has been destroyed,” reads the synopsis. “Joel and Ellie, a pair connected through the harshness of the world they live in, are forced to endure brutal circumstances and ruthless killers on a trek across a post-pandemic America.”
The Last of Us is now available to watch on HBO and HBO Max.