HBO's adaptation of The Last of Us added Kaitlyn Dever to its Season 2 cast.

But who is Dever? She hasn't starred in a franchise project on the scale of The Last of Us before, so this may be an introduction to the actress.

Before The Last of Us Season 2, we will catch you up with everything you need to know about Dever.

Where have I seen her? 

While Kaitlyn Dever may not be a household name (yet), she hasn't lacked big roles. She starred in FX's Justified with Timothy Olyphant from 2011 until 2015. Dever also starred in Last Man Standing for the duration of its run.

On the big screen, you may have seen Dever in Bad Teacher, Short Term 12, Dear Evan Hansen, and Booksmart.

Career beginnings

In 2009, Dever starred in An American Girl: Chrissa Stands Strong. It was a TV film, but a start nonetheless. That same year, Dever would appear in episodes of Make It or Break It and Modern Family.

A couple of years later and Dever would find her Justified and Last Man Standing roles. She would also appear in an episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm around this time. This finally provided Dever the breakout roles she needed.

Additionally, Dever made her feature film debuts in Bad Teacher and J. Edgar in 2011. This allowed her the chance to work with the likes of Cameron Diaz, Justin Timberlake, Clint Eastwood, and Leonardo DiCaprio.

On Last Man Standing, Dever played Eve Baxter, the daughter of Mike Baxter (Tim Allen). She would be a main part of the cast from its first season until its sixth (even surviving the mid-series recastings) and was delegated into a recurring role as her career took off.

2013 was then Dever's true film breakout year. She starred in coming-of-age films The Spectacular Now and Short Term 12.

A steady career 

From there, Dever continued to grow her resume. Between 2014-2018, Dever continued starring in Last Man Standing as well as films like All Summers End, Detroit, and Beautiful Boy.

Dever then starred in Olivia Wilde's directorial debut, Booksmart. The role is arguably her best to date. She played Amy, a high school senior who embarks on a wild night out with her best friend Molly (Beanie Feldstein). They spent all of their high school years studying and working to get into Ivy League schools. Now, they want to let their hair down.

Booksmart was a big success upon its premiere at SXSW (South by Southwest) in March 2019. The film was picked up by United Artists Releasing and grossed $25 million at the box office. The ensemble was star-studded, featuring the likes of Will Forte, Jason Sudeikis, Billie Lourd, Diana Silvers, Skyler Gisondo, Molly Gordon, and Mason Gooding.

Becoming a leading woman and producer

After Booksmart, Dever further cemented herself as a leading woman. Her performance in Dear Evan Hansen carried an awful film. It was as if everything, including Ben Platt, was actively trying to bring the film down. Dever still managed to give a heck of a performance in the film.

She would then lead a couple of rom-coms in 2022, Ticket to Paradise and Rosaline. The former could be argued to be more about George Clooney and Julia Roberts' Ocean's Eleven reunion, but it was still a new venture for Dever. In Rosaline, she makes the titular role more than the footnote she is in William Shakespeare's original Romeo and Juliet story.

Kaitlyn Dever executive produced Rosaline and her 2023 film, No One Will Save You. This is another step of evolution for her as she begins to take the creative reins more.

Speaking of No One Will Save You, Dever ventured into the horror genre with the Brian Duffield joint. It's a mostly silent performance, which makes it all the more impressive. She plays a woman living in isolation who has to fight against an alien invasion.

2023 also featured two small Dever roles. She plays Nicole in Taika Waititi's Next Goal Wins, though she never appears on-screen. She is the daughter of Michael Fassbender's Thomas Rongen who passed away prior to the events of the film. Her voice can be heard via saved voicemails in his inbox.

Good Grief, Dan Levy's new film, also features Dever. However, it is in a cameo capacity.

A TV return detour

In 2021, Dever gave a career-defining performance in Dopesick for Hulu. The opioid crisis drama starred the likes of Michael Keaton, Will Poulter, Peter Sarsgaard, and Rosario Dawson, yet she was the standout.

If there was ever any doubt over Dever's dramatic chops, Dopesick put them to bed. Her performance as Betsy, a young woman working in a blue collar job who needs the medicine she is given, is heartbreaking. Dever goes toe-to-toe with Keaton and carries the show's emotional weight.

Dever also starred in Unbelievable for Netflix in 2019. This was another dramatic turn for her as she plays a woman charged with a crime for reporting that she was raped. The miniseries chronicles that and the police investigation. It was based on the real 2008-2011 serial rape cases in Washington and Colorado.

Part-time musician  

Along with her sister, Mady, Dever formed the band Beulahbelle. The duo have released two singles, “Raleigh” (the better of the two) and “Being You.” Their music features the vocal harmonies of a Fleetwood Mac.

Beulahbelle also contributed to the soundtrack of 2018's Tully.

What's next?

Kaitlyn Dever will now set her sights on The Last of Us Season 2. She will play Abby in the show, who is a main character in The Last of Us Part II video game. Abby was played by Laura Bailey in the game, who did the motion capture and voice acting. Dever previously did motion capture and voice acting work on Uncharted 4: A Thief's End.

She is also in production on another miniseries, Apple Cider Vinegar. Ashley Zukerman, Susie Porter, and Tilda Cobham-Hervey also star in the series.