Isabela Merced joins the cast of The Last of Us
Latin Times/Kayfex

MIAMI - In a thrilling update for fans of HBO's critically acclaimed series "The Last of Us," Isabela Merced has been officially cast as Dina for the eagerly awaited Season 2. The announcement marks a significant development in the series, which boasts Pedro Pascal in the lead and has garnered a massive following for its gripping narrative and deep character development.

The Peruvian American singer and actress, known for her dynamic performances in a range of film projects, is now set to bring Dina to life. The character is described as a multifaceted woman who is "warm, brilliant, wild, funny, moral, dangerous, and instantly lovable," promising to add a new layer of complexity to the show's already rich storyline.

The three Latinos in The Last of Us

"This is very cool," Merced said on Instagram after the news broke.

In a release provided by HBO, the show's co-creators, Craig Mazin and Neil Druckmann, expressed their excitement about Merced's casting. "You can search forever for an actor who effortlessly embodies all of those things, or you can find Isabela Merced right away. We couldn't be prouder to have her join our family," they said.

Merced's addition to the cast follows the recent announcements of Kaitlyn Dever and "Beef" star Young Mazino joining the series, further bolstering an already stellar ensemble. Her character, Dina, is set to be a free-spirited individual whose dedication to Ellie, the show's young protagonist, will be challenged by the harsh realities of their post-apocalyptic world.

A proud Peruvian American

Merced brings along a commendable portfolio, having starred in "Rosaline" alongside Dever and "Dora and the Lost City of Gold," as well as taking on significant roles in "Instant Family," the "Father of the Bride" remake, "Sicario: Day of the Soldado," and "Transformers: The Last Knight." Moreover, fans can look forward to seeing her in upcoming high-profile projects like "Superman: Legacy," "Alien: Romulus," and "Madame Web."

She is also the face of several fashion and lifestyle brands.

Isabela Merced is also an accomplished singer, with more than half a million subscribers in Spotify and collaborations with bona fide Latino stars like Sebastián Yatra and Danna Paola. She has also used her music videos to celebrate her Latina pride and honor her ancestry.

Merced is the proud descendant of a line of strong Peruvian women. She actually changed her artistic name to honor her grandmother, Mercedes, when she transitioned from Isabela Moner to Isabela Merced."

Dora the Explorer dystopia style

"The Last of Us," an adaptation of the hit video game of the same name created by Druckmann and developed by Naughty Dog, has captivated audiences with its harrowing tale of survival and human connection.

Set two decades after the collapse of modern civilization, the series follows Joel (Pedro Pascal), a hardened survivor, tasked with smuggling Ellie (Bella Ramsey), a young girl, out of a repressive quarantine zone. What begins as a seemingly straightforward mission evolves into an emotionally charged journey across the United States.

Season 1 of "The Last of Us" featured an impressive cast including Gabriel Luna, Anna Torv, Nico Parker, Murray Bartlett, Nick Offerman, Melanie Lynskey, and more, setting a high bar for the upcoming season, expected to be released in 2025.

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