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HBO documentary ‘The Last Cruise’ shows nightmare aboard Diamond Princess in COVID’s early days

By Kara Santos Published Mar 23, 2021 1:54 pm

HBO has released the first trailer for its upcoming documentary The Last Cruise airing on March 30, 2021.

The upcoming film uses first-person footage to depict the nightmare faced by those on board the ill-fated Diamond Princess, which set sail from Japan during the earliest days of the COVID-19 outbreak.

The Diamond Princess cruise ship set sail from Yokohama, Japan on Jan. 20, 2020 on what was supposed to be a 16-day round trip cruise. A little over a month later, the ship accounted for more than half of all the documented COVID-19 cases outside of China, with 700 people on board infected. The Diamond Princess had 2,666 guests onboard—of which about a half were Japanese residents—and 1,045 crew members.

All those on board faced a terrifying ordeal as the ship was unable to dock and passengers were unable to leave their rooms for weeks due to quarantine restrictions. On top of that, the infected crew members had to continue to work to keep the ship running.

The documentary, directed and produced by Hannah Olson, uses intimate footage recorded by the passengers and crew on the ship offering viewers a chilling first-hand look at what it was like to be quarantined aboard the cruise ship. 

"It started as a vacation. It ended as a nightmare," the film's tagline reads on the poster.

Following its world premiere at the SXSW Film Festival in the Documentary Shorts Competition category, the HBO original documentary The Last Cruise will debut on March 30, 2021 on HBO and will also be available to stream on HBO Max.

(Images via HBO Max)