Written by Shona Smith on Jun 10, 2019. Posted in General Interest

Highly rated HBO / Sky miniseries boosts tourism to Chernobyl

HBO’s gripping five-part miniseries Chernobyl follows the aftermath of the explosion at the Ukrainian nuclear reactor plant in 1989. Since airing in May, tourist interest in the site has risen considerably.

Met with rave reviews, the disaster series highlights the ‘culture of lies’ that foreshadowed the accident, as well as the dramatic aftermath. Currently the highest ranked series on IMDB averaging a near-perfect 9.7 score, the HBO / Sky co-production reached the biggest audience for a Sky Original drama so far in 2019.

Widely received as a gripping portrayal of the catastrophic event, the horrific nature of the subject has not been mellowed for audiences. However, the deeply shocking series has only encouraged a boost to the number of tourists eager to to visit the Chernobyl site and exclusion zone.chernobylpresspack6

According to Reuters, one tour agency has seen a 40% rise in trip bookings since the HBO series began airing in May. The site was opened to visitors by the Ukraininan government in 2011, after it was deemed safe for visits, and a number of agencies run guided tours to the exclusion zone.

Assiduous detail was given to the production of Chernobyl , with many additional sets built for the shoot. Principal production was concentrated in the UK and Lithuania, where a decommissioned twin nuclear plant with a sister reactor to Chernobyl’s was used.However, filming did take place in the Chernobyl exclusion zone itself as well as elsewhere in Ukraine.

Although having been met with glowing reviews, creator Craig Mazin has confirmed that there will not be a follow up second series.

Ukraine currently has no formal incentives available to incoming productions, but the low cost of productions bring in regular shoots.

Lithuania has a 30% incentive for  fiction TV and film, documentaries and animations that incur at least 80% of eligible production costs in Lithuania.

The UK provides a 25% tax rebate to national and co-produced TV film or series that have a core expenditure of at least GBP1 million per broadcast hour. 10% of the projects core expenditure must be UK expenditure.

Images: HBO

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