Nick Offerman won his first Creative Arts Emmy for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series, as Bill in HBO’s post-apocalyptic drama The Last of Us, over the weekend.

In doing so he beat his co-star – or should we say co-lover – Murray Bartlett who was also nominated, before addressing speculation about a potential prequel to further explore the love story of their characters.

“Thank you to the Academy for this pat on the back and for even counting me among my fellow nominees, especially my magnificently generous partner and rightly lauded Aussie top man – the Girth from Perth – Murray Bartlett,” the actor remarked during his speech, “without whom it would have been awfully tough to pull off a beautiful, richly-veined 2-hander.”

He continued to thank HBO and Carolyn Strauss, executive producer, for “continuing to produce wildly entertaining programs like this that arc toward decency and inclusivity.”

On 7 January, Offerman further extended his thanks on X (formerly Twitter), where he stated: “Friends, I was fortunate enough to receive a very nice winged Emmy accolade figurine last night for my work as Bill in @TheLastofUsHBO written by the indomitable @clmazin.

“It’s hard to fully swallow because the role was in an inseparable partnership with the magnificent #MurrayBartlett so I wish they had 2 trophies to give. Without Frank, Bill ain’t shit. Anyway, here’s my speech.”

The Last of Us was the big winner at the first of the two 75th Creative Arts Emmy Awards ceremonies, receiving honours in nine categories including Outstanding Best Guest Actress in a Drama Series (Storm Reid), Picture Editing, Main Title Design, Prosthetic Makeup, Sound Editing, Sound Mixing and Visual Effects.

Early in 2023, the HBO adaptation of the popular Naughty Dog game franchise was met with widespread critical acclaim.

The series stars Pedro Pascal as Joel, a smuggler who is forced to travel across the United States with Ellie (Bella Ramsey), a teenager who is immune to the virus that is transforming the population into mutated, zombified creatures.

The acclaimed gay love story portrayed by Offerman and Bartlett featured in episode three of the beloved series. However, we couldn’t help but feel that the episode was a trailer for a potential prequel opportunity.

Offerman has confirmed and fuelled appetite for the potential spin-off after being interviewed backstage at the awards: “It certainly has been pitched. I think we pitched, like, how about a whole mini-series of a prequel of their lives before they meet each other. It could be a musical.”

He added “we are not short of ideas, we will see what Craig [Mazin] and Neil [Druckmann] come up with.”

The star was then asked whether he would be interested in starring in a new edition to the franchise, telling reporters: “Oh sure. I was lucky this time they needed a guy who could use a shovel and there are only three of us in Hollywood Harrison Ford passed and Jane Lynch wasn’t available.”

Irrespective of whether we can expect a spin-off, the popularity of the first season prompted the announcement of the renewal of the second season prior to the finale of season one.

Upon the announcement of the news Druckmann, executive producer, celebrated: “I’m humbled, honoured, and frankly overwhelmed that so many people have tuned in and connected with our retelling of Joel and Ellie’s journey. The collaboration with Craig Mazin, our incredible cast & crew, and HBO exceeded my already high expectations.

“Now we have the absolute pleasure of being able to do it again with season two! On behalf of everyone at Naughty Dog & PlayStation, thank you!”

Casey Bloys, HBO CEO, announced at a press conference on 2 November 2023 that production for season two is slated for early this year, with a tentative release scheduled for 2025, as reported by Deadline.