The Last of Us series cast not allowed to say “zombie” on set

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The Last of Us HBO series has achieved strong success since the first episode aired at the start of January, so much so that a second season has already been greenlit.

There were some oddities people took note of before the show aired. Such as how the lead actors for Joel and Elle had minimal interaction with the video games the series is based upon. Though this was far from the only strange thing, as some might consider.

For example, it turns out that the word “zombie” was banned from use on set (via Motion Pictures). Cinematographer Eben Bolter revealed this fact during an interview about this restriction on the cast and crew.

“We weren’t allowed to say the Z word on set,” Bolter said. “It was like a banned word. They were the Infected. We weren’t a zombie show”.

He didn’t state where or who put that rule up, perhaps director Craig Mazin, but it was apparently followed by the entire team.

The team is adamant about stating that The Last of Us television series isn’t a “cliché zombie show”, though this probably won’t stop fans and random onlookers from still referring to the infected creatures as zombies.

As a funny aside, this does remind myself back in the days of Killing Floor when people would say the creatures were “zeds” and not “zombies. Or even the Resident Evil franchise’s change from calling them such starting with Resident Evil 4.

Meanwhile, The Last of Us television series is airing now on HBO Max.



Got into gaming thanks to a nice old lady who lived across the street. Enjoy most genres of games.

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