Mahershala Ali is reportedly being lined up to play the lead role of Joel in HBO’s upcoming The Last of Us series.
That’s according to a report from pop culture site The Illuminerdi, which claims the actor was offered the role after it was turned down by Matthew McConaughey.
Ali has starred in TV shows including True Detective, House of Cards and Luke Cage, won Best Supporting Oscars for his performances in Moonlight and Green Book, and will portray Blade in an upcoming Marvel movie reboot.
UPDATE: Game of Thrones actors Pedro Pascal and Bella Ramsey have officially been cast as Joel and Ellie in HBO’s The Last of Us series.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, True Detective star Mahershala Ali had been in discussions to join the show, but a deal didn’t come to fruition.
ORIGINAL STORY CONTINUES: Chernobyl creator Craig Mazin is co-writing and executive producing the Last of Us TV adaptation with Naughty Dog co-president Neil Druckmann, the creative director of the game series and the co-director of Uncharted 4.
Carolyn Strauss (Game of Thrones, Chernobyl) is also executive producing along with Naughty Dog president Evan Wells.
The adaptation will be the first television series from PlayStation Productions, a studio formed by Sony Interactive Entertainment to adapt its original game properties for film and TV.
It will cover the events of the original The Last of Us, which was released in 2013, and may include content based on The Last of Us Part 2, which launched in 2020.
Mazin announced in January that he was quitting Twitter amid intense interest in his work.
He said the main reason for doing so was that he’d developed an unhealthy relationship with the site, which he labelled an “addictive” platform.
However, he also said he’d struggled with fan attention surrounding his current projects, which could at times be “stifling”.