Russia Is Re-Making HBO’s Chernobyl And It Blames America

Yeah, I’m as confused as you are. In response to problems with the facts and production with the popular HBO miniseries Chernobyl, Russia has decided to tell its own version of the nuclear disaster at reactor 4. This spin-off includes the intervention of a malicious American CIA agent who causes the entire debacle.

I for one am looking forward to seeing how the whole thing shakes down from a different perspective. Excuse me, melts down.

The Villain From Conspiracy Theories

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Photo Credit: Chernobyl / HBO / Movie Stills DB

Instead of mismanagement and faulty technology playing the roles of the villains in the new series, Russia’s Chernobyl will showcase an American CIA saboteur working to bring down the plant. The inspiration? Fringe conspiracy theories that have been swirling for years.

“One theory holds that Americans had infiltrated the Chernobyl nuclear power plant and many historians do not deny that,” Alexei Mruadov, the director of the new series says. “On the day of the explosion, an agent of the enemy’s intelligence services was present at the station.”

The Source Is Government Funded

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Photo Credit: Chernobyl / HBO / Movie Stills DB

NTV television network is producing and airing the series. NTV is owned by Gazprom Media, the media arm of the natural gas giant Gazprom that is partially funded by the culture ministry. While the actual numbers of funding for the series had yet to be released, the culture ministry has provided Gazprom roughly $460,000.

While the source isn’t surprising once hearing the show’s plotline, it’s worth being aware of before watching the series.

NTV Has Made Pro-Kremlin Chernobyl Before

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Photo Credit: Chernobyl / HBO / Movie Stills DB

The network airing the new show is no stranger to releasing pro-Kremlin Chernobyl content. In August 2014, it broadcasted a documentary describing critics of Russia’s policies in Ukraine as “traitors” and “fascists.” It also broadcast another program called “Anatomy of a Protest” that portrayed anti-government agitators as “Western puppets.”

What’s different about this version is that it’s coming as a direct response to a hit show. HBO’s Chernobyl is wildly popular – it currently sits at 9.6/10 on IMDb and has 95% on Rotten Tomatoes. It will be interesting to see if Russia’s reaches that magnitude as well.

Jesse McCartney Will Not Be In It

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Photo Credit: Chernobyl Diaries / Alcon Entertainment / Movie Stills DB

Chernobyl Diaries starand early 2000’s pop sensation Jesse McCartney has yet to confirm his involvement in the new series. Based on his experience at the Chernobyl site fighting off irradiated monsters and animals, McCartney should have a seat at the writer’s table. Or at least a consultant role in the production.

Considering that production is well underway and McCartney is currently enjoying a vacation in Napa Valley, it seems unlikely the star will make an appearance.