May 6, 2019, was the premiere date of Chernobyl, the historical drama television miniseries by HBO and British television network Sky. Much of series depicting the Chernobyl nuclear disaster that occurred in the Ukrainian SSR in April 1986 was shot in Lithuania last year – Kaunas, too, so we’re very excited to see our city on screen.
Inspired by a true yet untold story, written by Craig Mazin and directed by Swedish director Bo Johan Renck, Chernobyl stars Jared Harris, Emily Watson, Stellan Skarsgård and many others. The Icelandic cellist and composer Hildur Guðnadóttir is the author of the soundtrack of the TV series.
The filming of Chernobyl took 16 weeks; Much of that time was spent in Lithuania. Initial filming started last May in Fabijoniškės, a “sleeping” microdistrict in Vilnius. Fabijoniškės portrayed Pripyat, the town where workers of Chernobyl lived, as it maintains a Soviet look.
The decommissioned Ignalina Nuclear Power Plant was also one of the locations of the miniseries, as it’s visually quite similar to Chernobyl. The production team spent some time Kaunas to shoot the scenes in Moscow (more on it here); in early June 2018, production moved to Ukraine to shoot minor final scenes.
Lithuania, including Kaunas, has been receiving more and more attention in terms of international film production. Last year, we sat down with the head of Kaunas Film Office Aurelijus Silkinis to discuss the achievements and prospects of shooting in Kaunas. You can find the article here and read more about shooting in Kaunas here.