Season 2 of HBO’s The Last of Us will star Kaitlyn Dever as Abby Anderson, the antagonist (and playable protagonist) of the video game The Last of Us Part 2, HBO and developer Naughty Dog announced Tuesday.
Dever will join returning cast members Pedro Pascal as Joel and Bella Ramsey as Ellie in the next season of HBO’s adaptation of the post-apocalyptic video game series.
A Golden Globe and Emmy nominee, Dever is best known for her roles in films like Booksmart and No One Can Save You, and TV series Justified and Dopesick. She also appeared in Naughty Dog’s Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End as Cassie, daughter of Nathan Drake and Elena Fisher.
Abby in The Last of Us Part 2 was portrayed by longtime Naughty Dog collaborator and veteran voice actor Laura Bailey — who made a brief cameo in season 1 of HBO’s The Last of Us as a nurse in the final episode, “Look for the Light.” Abby’s in-game appearance was based on two other women: face model Jocelyn Mettler and athlete Colleen Fotsch. The fictional events of The Last of Us Part 2 also led to the women who portrayed Abby being harassed by supposed fans of Naughty Dog’s games, including numerous death threats against them.
The role of Abby will be a crucial one to the story of season 2 (and possibly season 3) of The Last of Us. The story of Naughty Dog’s sequel, set years after the original game, focused on the repercussions of Joel and Ellie’s choices in the first chapter; players experienced the resulting conflict from two perspectives, playing as both Ellie and Abby over the course of The Last of Us Part 2’s lengthy story.
Season 2 of The Last of Us does not have an announced release date, but likely won’t arrive until 2025. It’s unlikely to be the final season, especially if it maintains the success of the first. Show creators Craig Mazin and Neil Druckmann have said the remaining story of The Last of Us will span “more than one season.”