Chernobyl (miniseries)

Last updated

Chernobyl 2019 Miniseries.jpg
Promotional art
Created by Craig Mazin
Written byCraig Mazin
Directed by Johan Renck
Composer Hildur Guðnadóttir
Country of origin
  • United States
  • United Kingdom
Original languageEnglish
No. of episodes5 (list of episodes)
Executive producers
Producer Sanne Wohlenberg
Production locations
  • Lithuania
  • Ukraine
CinematographyJakob Ihre
  • Jinx Godfrey
  • Simon Smith
Camera setup Single-camera
Running time60–72 minutes
Production companies
  • HBO
  • Sky UK
  • Sister Pictures
  • The Mighty Mint
  • Word Games
Distributor Warner Bros. Television Distribution
Original network
Picture format UHDTV 2160p
Original releaseMay 6 (2019-05-06) 
June 3, 2019 (2019-06-03)
External links

Chernobyl is a 2019 historical drama television miniseries that revolves around the Chernobyl disaster of 1986 and the cleanup efforts that followed. The series was created and written by Craig Mazin and directed by Johan Renck. It features an ensemble cast led by Jared Harris, Stellan Skarsgård, Emily Watson and Paul Ritter. The series was produced by HBO in the United States and Sky UK in the United Kingdom.


The five-part series premiered in the United States on May 6, 2019, and concurrently in the United Kingdom on May 7, to widespread critical acclaim. At the 71st Primetime Emmy Awards, it received nineteen nominations and won for Outstanding Limited Series, Outstanding Directing, and Outstanding Writing, while Harris, Skarsgård, and Watson received acting nominations. At the 77th Golden Globe Awards, the series won for Best Miniseries or Television Film and Skarsgård won for Best Supporting Actor in a Series, Miniseries or Television Film. [2] [3]

While the series was exhaustively researched, some liberties were taken for dramatic purposes. The release of each episode was accompanied by a podcast in which Mazin and NPR host Peter Sagal discuss these changes and the reasoning behind them. [4] Critics, experts and witnesses have noted certain minor historical and factual discrepancies in the show, though the creators' attention to detail has been widely praised. [5] [6]


Chernobyl dramatizes the story of the April 1986 nuclear plant disaster which occurred in the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, Soviet Union, telling the stories of the people who were involved in the disaster and those who responded to it. [7] The series depicts some of the lesser-known stories of the disaster, including the efforts of the firefighters who were the first responders on the scene, volunteers, and teams of miners who dug a critical tunnel under Reactor 4.

The miniseries is based in large part on the recollections of Pripyat locals, as told by Belarusian Nobel laureate Svetlana Alexievich in her book Voices from Chernobyl . [8]






No.TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date (EDT) [lower-alpha 2] US viewers
(millions) [lower-alpha 3]
UK viewers
(millions) [lower-alpha 4]
1"1:23:45" Johan Renck Craig Mazin May 6, 2019 (2019-05-06)0.756 [12] 0.861 [13]
On 26 April 1986 at 01:23:45 a.m., Reactor 4 of the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant explodes near Pripyat, Ukraine. Deputy Chief Engineer Anatoly Dyatlov dismisses the severity of the explosion, despite the fact that the core has exploded and is now exposed. Emergency services arrive, unaware of the danger posed by debris strewn from the explosion. Dyatlov meets with the Pripyat Executive Committee, who disregard the danger posed to the city and its inhabitants by forbidding evacuation and suspending communication to the outside world. Under Dyatlov's orders, Aleksandr Akimov and Leonid Toptunov manually open water valves to flood the damaged reactor, but in doing so are exposed to lethal radiation doses. Valery Legasov is informed of what has happened and is ordered to Chernobyl to provide technical advice to the committee managing the response.
2"Please Remain Calm"Johan RenckCraig MazinMay 13, 2019 (2019-05-13)1.004 [14] 0.891 [13]
In Minsk, Belarus seven hours following the explosion, nuclear physicist Ulana Khomyuk detects a spike in radiation levels but her concerns are ignored by local authorities. At Pripyat Hospital (now overloaded with patients suffering from ARS), Lyudmilla Ignatenko finds out that her husband, firefighter Vasily has been sent to Moscow as well as several other ARS patients. Mikhail Gorbachev is briefed by Legasov that the event in Chernobyl is much more serious than initially reported, and is sent there with Boris Shcherbina to ascertain the severity in person. Boris remains adamantly skeptical that Legasov is wrong, even when Legasov points out the distinctive streak of blue light emanating from the reactor, meaning that the reactor is exposed and radiation is entering the atmosphere. A dosimeter reading also proves Legasov correct, and the military is instructed to stop the fire with sand and boron. Khomyuk also arrives in Chernobyl to investigate the spike, and warns Legasov and Shcherbina that a disastrous steam explosion will occur if the core makes contact with the accumulated valve water. A group of volunteers successfully drain the water, but further dangers lie ahead.
3"Open Wide, O Earth"Johan RenckCraig MazinMay 20, 2019 (2019-05-20)1.063 [15] 1.100 [13]
Though the basement is drained, a nuclear meltdown begins and threatens to leak into and contaminate the Pripyat and Dnieper Rivers, the local water supply for 50 million people, plus crops and livestock. Coal miners from Tula are enlisted to dig a tunnel and install a heat exchanger directly underneath the plant. Meanwhile, Khomyuk is sent to a Moscow hospital, where she finds an uncooperative Dyatlov. She learns from dying Toptunov and Akimov that the emergency shutdown initiated by Akimov triggered the explosion, a scenario deemed impossible. Lyudmilla bribes her way into the hospital to be with her husband and sees with her own eyes his deteriorating condition. Khomyuk witnesses Lyudmilla entering Vasily's isolated bed and making contact with him, and threatens to expose the hospital's negligence but is arrested by KGB agents who had been following her. Legasov arranges her release; he and Shcherbina report to the Committee their plans, which require the mass mobilization of liquidators for decontamination. Lyudmilla later watches her husband and several other deceased ARS victims lowered into a mass grave, sealed in a zinc casket and buried in concrete.
4"The Happiness of All Mankind"Johan RenckCraig MazinMay 27, 2019 (2019-05-27)1.193 [16] 1.311 [13]
A wider exclusion zone is ordered as Legasov's plans indicate. Troops are also deployed to dispose of abandoned and wild animals because of the threat posed by possible contamination. An advanced police robot sent from West Germany instantly fails on the most irradiated level of the plant's roof, meaning that General Nikolai Tarakanov has little choice but to order 3,828 liquidators to clear the graphite debris by hand, given only 90 seconds each to do so. Khomyuk gains access to classified documents and identifies a strikingly similar near incident in 1975 at the Leningrad Nuclear Power Plant, which it turns out Legasov knew about. She urges Legasov to testify in the eventual trial of Dyatlov and the plant management; Legasov will also address the International Atomic Energy Agency. Shcherbina, who has grown to understand the true impact and scale of what has happened and might happen again in the future, urges caution to avoid a government retaliation.
5"Vichnaya Pamyat" [lower-alpha 5] Johan RenckCraig MazinJune 3, 2019 (2019-06-03)1.089 [17] 2.112 [13]
Dyatlov, and Committee members Bryukhanov and Fomin are put on trial for their mismanagement of the disaster. Shcherbina, Khomyuk and Legasov give testimony. Whilst Legasov attributes the incident to Dyatlov's blatant disregard for safety procedure, he does not hold him solely responsible. He reveals (though in doing so admits that his testimony at a hearing in Vienna was a lie) that the boron-made control rods, meant to reduce reactivity, actually had their tips manufactured from graphite – a material that accelerates reactivity. Legasov's revelation effectively makes the government responsible for the suppression of this information – when Akimov engaged AZ-5 to shut down the reactor, he had unknowingly triggered the explosion. Senior KGB deputy Charkov privately informs Legasov that his testimony will be rejected by the state, and his role in preventing the disaster getting out of hand will be attributed to other people. The series' end credits reveal the fates of several key people involved in the clean-up of the Chernobyl disaster, and state that the show is dedicated to their bravery and sacrifices.


Development and writing

Writer Craig Mazin began researching for the project in 2014, by reading books and government reports from inside and outside the Soviet Union. Mazin also interviewed nuclear scientists to learn how a reactor works, and former Soviet citizens to gain a better idea of the culture in 1986. Mazin also read several first-person accounts in order to bring additional authenticity to the story. He explained, "When you're reading the personal stories of people who were there—people who lived near the plant, people who worked at the plant, people who were sent to Chernobyl as part of the effort to clean it up—in those individual accounts, that's really where the story came alive". [18]

Mazin's interest in creating the series originated when he decided to write something that addressed "how we're struggling with the global war on the truth right now". [19] Another inspiration is that he knew Chernobyl exploded, but he did not know why. He explained, "I didn't know why, and I thought there was this inexplicable gap in my knowledge ... So, I began reading about it, just out of this very dry, intellectual curiosity, and what I discovered was that, while the story of the explosion is fascinating, and we make it really clear exactly why and how it happened, what really grabbed me and held me were the incredible stories of the human beings who lived through it, and who suffered and sacrificed to save the people that they loved, to save their countrymen and to save a continent, and continued to do so, against odds that were startling and kept getting worse. I was so moved by it. It was like I had discovered a war that people just hadn't really depicted, and I became obsessed". [20] Mazin said that "The lesson of Chernobyl isn't that modern nuclear power is dangerous. The lesson is that lying, arrogance, and suppression of criticism are dangerous". [21]

In preparation for the miniseries, Mazin visited the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. [22] Mazin made the decision in the early stages not to use Russian or Ukrainian accents, and instead, have the actors use their natural accents. Mazin explained, "We had an initial thought that we didn't want to do the 'Boris and Natasha' clichéd accent because the Russian accent can turn comic very easily. At first, we thought that maybe we would have people do these sort of vaguely Eastern European accents—not really strong but noticeable. What we found very quickly is that actors will act accents. They will not act, they will act accents and we were losing everything about these people that we loved. Honestly, I think after maybe one or two auditions we said 'Ok, new rule. We're not doing that anymore'". [23] Mazin also did not cast any American actors, as that could potentially pull the audience out of the story. [24]

On July 26, 2017, it was announced that HBO and Sky had given a series order to Chernobyl. It was HBO's first co-production with Sky UK. The five-episode miniseries was written by Craig Mazin and directed by Johan Renck. Mazin also served as an executive producer alongside Carolyn Strauss and Jane Featherstone, with Chris Fry and Renck acting as co-executive producers. [7] [25] On March 11, 2019, it was announced that the miniseries would premiere on May 6, 2019. [26] On June 4, 2019, Craig Mazin made the original scripts of all episodes available for downloading as PDFs (see External links below). [27]

A companion podcast for the miniseries had new episodes published as each TV episode aired on HBO. [28] The podcast featured conversations between Mazin and host Peter Sagal including discussions of where the show was as true as possible to historical events and where events were consolidated or modified as part of artistic license. [4]


Simultaneously with the initial series announcement, it was confirmed that Jared Harris would star in the series. [25] On March 19, 2018, it was announced that Stellan Skarsgård and Emily Watson had joined the main cast, marking their second collaboration together after Breaking the Waves. [29] In May 2018, it was announced that Paul Ritter, Jessie Buckley, Adrian Rawlins, and Con O'Neill also had joined the cast. [30]


The Soviet-era district of Fabijoniskes (Vilnius, Lithuania) was used to portray Pripyat Fabionishkes - panoramio.jpg
The Soviet-era district of Fabijoniškės (Vilnius, Lithuania) was used to portray Pripyat

Principal photography began in April 2018 in Lithuania. [25] Initial filming started on May 13, 2018, in Fabijoniškės, a residential district in Vilnius, Lithuania, which was used to portray the Ukrainian city of Pripyat, since the district maintained an authentic Soviet atmosphere. An area of densely built panel housing apartments served as a location for the evacuation scenes. Director Johan Renck heavily criticised the amount of diverse and eye-catching modern windows in the houses, but was not concerned about removing them in post-production. At the end of March, production moved to Visaginas, Lithuania, to shoot both the exterior and interior of the Ignalina Nuclear Power Plant, a decommissioned nuclear power station that is sometimes referred to as "Chernobyl's sister" due to its visual resemblance and the nuclear reactor design used at both Chernobyl and Ignalina (RBMK nuclear power reactor). In early June 2018, production moved to Ukraine to shoot minor final scenes. [31] The filming of Chernobyl took 16 weeks. [32]


Chernobyl: Music from the Original TV Series
Chernobyl soundtrack.jpg
Soundtrack album by
ReleasedMay 31, 2019 (2019-05-31)
Genre Dark Ambient
Label Deutsche Grammophon
Producer Hildur Guðnadóttir
Hildur Guðnadóttir chronology
Sicario: Day of the Soldado
Chernobyl: Music from the Original TV Series
Joker: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

The musical score was composed by Icelandic composer Hildur Guðnadóttir. Music was created using sound recordings from an actual nuclear power plant. [33]

Track listing

All tracks are written by Hildur Guðnadóttir except where noted.

Chernobyl: Music from the Original TV Series [34]
1."The Door" 2:43
2."Bridge of Death" 4:44
3."Turbine Hall" 2:36
4."Vichnaya Pamyat"Homin Lviv Municipal Choir4:07
5."Pump Room" 3:43
6."Clean Up" 1:41
7."Dealing with Destruction" 1:54
8."Waiting for the Engineer" 1:31
9."Gallery" 2:23
10."12 Hours Before" 2:31
11."Corridors" 3:13
12."Liður (Chernobyl Version)" 2:48
13."Evacuation" 4:43

Historical accuracy

The series was exhaustively researched, [35] but some liberties were taken for dramatic purposes, such as Legasov being present at the trial. [36] [37] The epilogue acknowledges that the character of Ulana Khomyuk is fictional, a composite of multiple Soviet scientists. Chernobyl expert Adam Higginbotham points out in an interview that there was no need for scientists to "uncover the truth"; that "many nuclear scientists knew all along that there were problems with this reactor—the problems that led ultimately to an explosion and disaster". [38] Artistic license was also used in the depiction of the "Bridge of Death," from which spectators in Pripyat watched the immediate aftermath of the explosion; the miniseries asserts that all of the spectators subsequently died, a claim which is now generally held to be an urban legend. [39] [40] [41]

The series' production design, such as the choice of sets, props, and costumes, has received high praise for its accuracy. Several sources have commended the attention to even minor setting details, such as the usage of actual Kyiv-region license plate numbers, and a New Yorker review states that "the material culture of the Soviet Union is reproduced with an accuracy that has never before been seen" from either Western or Russian filmmakers. [42] [38] [8] [43] Oleksiy Breus, a Chernobyl engineer, commends the portrayal of the symptoms of radiation poisoning; [44] however, Robert Gale, a doctor who treated Chernobyl victims, states that the miniseries overstated the symptoms by suggesting that the patients were actively radioactive. [45] In a more critical judgment, a review from the Moscow Times highlights some small design errors: for instance, Soviet soldiers are inaccurately shown as holding their weapons in Western style, and Legasov's apartment was too "dingy" for a scientist of his status. [46]

The portrayal of Soviet officials, including both plant management and central government figures, has received more criticism. Breus argues that the characters of Viktor Bryukhanov, Nikolai Fomin, and Anatoly Dyatlov were "distorted and misrepresented, as if they were villains." [44] Similarly, multiple reviews criticize the series for creating a stark moral dichotomy, in which the scientists are depicted as overly heroic while the government and plant officials are uniformly villainous. [42] [47] [48] [49] The occasional threats of violence and execution from government officials were also seen as anachronistic: Masha Gessen of the New Yorker argues that the threats depicted "were not a feature of Soviet life after the nineteen-thirties." [42] [46] Higginbotham takes a more positive view of the portrayal of the authorities, however, arguing that the unconcerned attitude of the central government was accurately depicted. [38]


Critical response

Chernobyl received almost unanimous critical acclaim in the West. On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the series has an approval rating of 96% based on 97 reviews, with an average rating of 8.94/10. The website's critics consensus reads: "Chernobyl rivets with a creeping dread that never dissipates, dramatizing a national tragedy with sterling craft and an intelligent dissection of institutional rot." [50] On Metacritic, it has a weighted average score of 82 out of 100, based on 27 critics, indicating "universal acclaim". [51] By June 2019, it had become the highest-rated TV series of all time on IMDb, with a score of 9.7/10 from over 140,000 users. [52] As of July 2021, it is the fifth-highest-rated TV series with a score of 9.4/10 from over 580,000 users. [53]

Reviewers from The Atlantic , The Washington Post , and BBC observed parallels to contemporary society by focusing on the power of information and how dishonest leaders can make mistakes beyond their comprehension. [54] Sophie Gilbert of The Atlantic hailed the series as a "grim disquisition on the toll of devaluing the truth"; [55] Hank Stuever of The Washington Post praised it for showcasing "what happens when lying is standard and authority is abused". [56] Meera Syal praised Chernobyl as a "fiercely intelligent exposition of the human cost of state censorship. Would love to see similar exposé of the Bhopal disaster". [57] David Morrison was "struck by the attention to accuracy" and says the "series does an outstanding job of presenting the technical and human issues of the accident." [58]

Jennifer K. Crosby, writing for The Objective Standard, says that the miniseries "explores the reasons for this monumental catastrophe and illustrates how it was magnified by the evasion and denial of those in charge," adding that "although the true toll of the disaster on millions of lives will never be known, Chernobyl goes a long way toward helping us understand [its] real causes and effects." [59] Aaron Giovannone writes critically of the series in the socialist publication Jacobin , stating that "even as we worry about the ongoing ecological crisis caused by capitalism, Chernobyl revels in the failure of the historical alternative to capitalism," which reinforces the status quo, offering us "no way out" of the crisis. [60]

Russian, Belarusian and Ukrainian response

The miniseries was well-received by some critics and audiences in Russia. [61] [62] [63] Vladimir Medinsky, Russian culture minister, whose father was one of the Chernobyl liquidators, called the series "masterfully made" and "filmed with great respect for ordinary people". [64] It was reported that Russian NTV television channel has been producing its own version of the Chernobyl story in which the CIA plays a key role in the disaster. [65] [66] However, the series in question had been in production since before HBO's miniseries and was not created in response to it. [67] An apparent trailer for the series was uploaded to YouTube but was later deleted following negative reaction. [68]

The Communists of Russia party called for a libel lawsuit against Chernobyl's writer, director and producers, describing the show as "disgusting". In a statement, party member Sergey Malinkovich spoke of the party's intentions to lobby TV regulator Roskomnadzor to request that it block local access to the series. [69] Marianna Prysiazhniuk of Vice Media notes that multiple Russian media outlets describe the miniseries as one-sided, incomplete, or anti-Russian propaganda. [70] Argumenty i Fakty dismissed the show as "a caricature and not the truth" and "The only things missing are the bears and accordions!" quipped Stanislav Natanzon, lead anchor of Russia-24, one of the country's main news channels. [71]

In Ukraine, Anna Korolevska, deputy director at the Ukrainian National Chernobyl Museum in Kyiv, said "Today young people coming to power in Ukraine know nothing about that disaster in 1986. It was a necessary film to make and HBO have obviously tried their best; as for us, we are going to create a special tour about Chernobyl's historic truth, inspired by the HBO series." [72] Bermet Talant, a Ukrainian journalist, noted that "In Russia, a state that still takes pride in the Soviet legacy, the series has faced criticism from the official media. Meanwhile, many in Ukraine appreciated the series for humanizing a tragic chapter in the country's history. […] Ukrainian viewers also appreciated HBO's Chernobyl for praising the heroism and self-sacrifice of ordinary people." [73]

Belarusian Nobel laureate Svetlana Alexievich, whose book inspired the series, said "We are now witnessing a new phenomenon that Belarusians, who suffered greatly and thought they knew a lot about the tragedy, have completely changed their perception about Chernobyl and are interpreting this tragedy in a whole new way. The authors accomplished this, even though they are from a completely different world – not from Belarus, not from our region." She also noted its popularity with young Belarusians. [74]

Reception in China

At the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in China, Chinese netizens drew parallels between the Soviet response to the Chernobyl disaster and the handling of the coronavirus outbreak by the Chinese government. [75] [76] As a response, the page for Chernobyl on Douban, which by that point had amassed more than 200,000 ratings with an average of 9.6 out of 10, was taken down. [77]

US ratings

Viewership and ratings per episode of Chernobyl
No.TitleAir date Rating
DVR viewers
Total viewers
1"1:23:45"May 6, 20190.20.756 [12] N/AN/AN/AN/A
2"Please Remain Calm"May 13, 20190.31.004 [14] 0.20.7160.51.721 [78]
3"Open Wide, O Earth"May 20, 20190.31.063 [15] 0.20.7270.51.791 [79]
4"The Happiness of All Mankind"May 27, 20190.31.193 [16] 0.30.8090.62.003 [80]
5"Vichnaya Pamyat"June 3, 20190.31.089 [17] 0.30.9740.62.064 [81]

Awards and nominations

American Cinema Editors Best Edited Miniseries or Motion Picture for TelevisionJinx Godfrey and Simon Smith (for "Vichnaya Pamyat")Won [82]
American Film Institute Awards Television Programs of the YearChernobylWon [83]
Art Directors Guild Awards Television Movie or Limited Series Luke HullWon [84]
Association of Motion Picture Sound AwardsExcellence in sound for a Television DramaChernobylWon [85]
Banff Rockie Award Limited seriesChernobylWon [86]
Blogos de OroMejor SerieChernobylWon [87]
Mejor Actor en una serie Jared Harris Won
Stellan Skarsgård Nominated
British Academy Scotland Awards Best Actor in Television Alex Ferns Won [88]
British Academy Television Awards Best Mini-Series ChernobylWon [89]
Best Leading Actor Jared HarrisWon
Best Supporting Actor Stellan SkarsgårdNominated
British Academy Television Craft Awards Best Director: Fiction Johan Renck Won [90]
Best Writer: Drama Craig Mazin Nominated
Best Editing: FictionSimon Smith and Jinx GodfreyWon
Best Costume Design Odile Dicks-Mireaux Won
Best Make Up & Hair DesignDaniel Parker and Barrie GowerNominated
Best Original Music Hildur Guðnadóttir Won
Best Photography & Lighting: FictionJakob IhreWon
Best Production DesignLuke Hull and Claire Levinson-GendlerWon
Best Scripted Casting Nina Gold and Robert SterneNominated
Best Sound: FictionStefan Henrix, Joe Beal, Stuart Hilliker and Vincent PiponnieWon
Best Special, Visual & Graphic EffectsLindsay Mcfarlane, Claudius Christian Rauch and Jean-Clément SoretNominated
British Film Designers Guild AwardsInternational TV Drama including Mini Series, TV Movie or Limited SeriesLuke Hull, Karen Wakefield and Claire Levinson-GendlerWon [91]
Broadcast Tech Innovation AwardBest VFX Project Max Dennison and Clare CheethamWon [92]
Excellence in Grading (scripted)ChernobylWon
Broadcasting Press Guild Awards Best Drama SeriesChernobylWon [93]
Best ActorJared HarrisNominated
Best ActressEmily WatsonNominated
Best WriterCraig MazinWon
Casting Society of America Limited SeriesNina Gold and Robert SterneNominated [94]
Cinema Audio Society Awards Outstanding Achievement in Sound Mixing for Television Movie or Limited Series Vincent Piponnier, Stuart Hilliker, Gibran Farrah and Philip ClementsWon [95]
Clio Awards Trailer 1 – Gold WinnerChernobylWon [96]
Video Promo Mixed Campaign – Gold WinnerWon
Costume Designers Guild Awards Excellence in Period Television Odile Dicks-Mireaux (for "Please Remain Calm")Nominated [97]
Critics' Choice Television Awards Best Limited Series ChernobylNominated [98]
Best Actor in a Limited Series or Television Movie Jared HarrisNominated
Best Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Television Movie Stellan SkarsgårdWon
Best Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Television Movie Emily Watson Nominated
Directors Guild of America Awards Outstanding Directing – Movies for Television and Limited Series Johan RenckWon [99]
Dorian Awards TV Drama of the YearChernobylNominated [100]
Edinburgh TV AwardsBest DramaChernobylWon [101]
Best TV ActorJared HarrisNominated
Emily WatsonNominated
Jessie BuckleyNominated
Festival Nazionale del Doppiaggio Voci nell'OmbraTV – Miglior doppiaggio generaleChernobylNominated [102]
Gold Derby AwardsLimited SeriesChernobylWon [103]
Ensemble of the YearJared Harris, Stellan Skarsgård, Paul Ritter, Jessie Buckley, Adam Nagaitis, Con O'Neill, Adrian Rawlins, Sam Troughton, Robert Emms, Emily Watson, David Dencik, Mark Lewis Jones, Alan Williams, Alex Ferns, Ralph Ineson, Barry Keoghan, Fares Fares and Michael McElhatton Nominated
Movie/Limited Series Lead ActorJared HarrisNominated
Movie/Limited Series Supporting ActorStellan SkarsgårdNominated
Movie/Limited Series Supporting ActressEmily WatsonNominated
Limited Series of the DecadeChernobylNominated
TV Movie/Mini Actor of the DecadeJared HarrisNominated
TV Movie/Mini Supporting Actress of the DecadeEmily WatsonNominated
Golden Globe Awards Best Limited Series or Television Film ChernobylWon [104]
Best Actor – Limited Series or Television Film Jared HarrisNominated
Best Supporting Actor – Series, Limited Series or Television Film Stellan SkarsgårdWon
Best Supporting Actress – Series, Limited Series or Television Film Emily WatsonNominated
Golden Reel Awards Outstanding Achievement in Sound Editing – Dialogue and ADR for Episodic Long Form Broadcast Media Stefan Henrix, Harry Barnes, Michael MaroussasWon [105]
Outstanding Achievement in Sound Editing – Sound Effects and Foley for Episodic Long Form Broadcast Media Stefan Henrix, Joe Beal, Philip Clements, Tom Stewart, Anna WrightWon
Golden Tomato Awards Best-reviewed Miniseries and Limited SeriesChernobylWon [106]
Golden Trailer Awards Best Horror/Thriller (TV Spot/Trailer/Teaser for a Series)ChernobylWon [107]
Gotham Awards Breakthrough Series – Long Form ChernobylNominated [108]
Grammy Awards Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media Hildur GuðnadóttirWon [109]
Hollywood Music In Media AwardsBest Original Score – TV Show/Limited SeriesHildur GuðnadóttirNominated [110]
Hollywood Post Alliance Outstanding Editing – Television (Over 30 Minutes)Simon Smith and Jinx Godfrey // Sister PicturesNominated [111]
Outstanding Sound – TelevisionStefan Henrix, Stuart Hilliker, Joe Beal, Michael Maroussas and Harry Barnes // Boom PostNominated
Outstanding Visual Effects – Television (Under 13 Episodes)Lindsay McFarlane, Max Dennison, Clare Cheetham, Steven Godfrey and Luke Letkey // DNEGNominated
Humanitas Prize Limited Series, TV Movie or Special CategoryCraig Mazin (for "Vichnaya Pamyat")Nominated [112]
IGN People's Choice Awards Best TV seriesChernobylWon [113]
Best drama TV seriesWon [114]
Best dramatic TV performanceJared HarrisWon [115]
Best TV episode"The Happiness of All Mankind"Won [116]
International Film Music Critics Association Best Original Score for TelevisionHildur GuðnadóttirWon [117]
Irish Film & Television Academy Awards Actor in a Supporting Role in DramaBarry KeoghanNominated [118]
Actress in a Supporting Role in DramaJessie BuckleyWon
Location Managers Guild Awards Outstanding Locations in Period TelevisionJonas SpokasWon [119]
Make-Up Artists and Hair Stylists Guilds Television Series, Mini-Series or New Media – Best Period and/or Character Make-UpDaniel Parker and Natasha Nikolic-DunlopNominated [120]
Television Series, Mini-Series or New Media – Best Special Make-Up Effects Daniel Parker, Barrie Gower and Paul SpateriWon
Television Series, Mini-Series or New Media – Best Period and/or Character Hair StylingDaniel Parker, Julio Parodi and Bozena MaisejenkoNominated
Music + Sound AwardsBest Sound Design in a Television ProgrammeChernobylWon [121]
National Television Awards New DramaChernobylWon [122]
Peabody Awards EntertainmentChernobylWon [123]
Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Limited Series Craig Mazin, Carolyn Strauss, Jane Featherstone, Johan Renck, Chris Fry and Sanne Wohlenberg Won [124]
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie Jared HarrisNominated
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Movie Stellan Skarsgård (for "Please Remain Calm")Nominated
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie Emily Watson (for "Open Wide, O Earth")Nominated
Outstanding Directing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special Johan RenckWon
Outstanding Writing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special Craig MazinWon
Primetime Creative Arts Emmy Awards Outstanding Casting for a Limited Series, Movie, or Special Nina Gold and Robert SterneNominated
Outstanding Cinematography for a Limited Series or Movie Jakob Ihre (for "Please Remain Calm")Won
Outstanding Period Costumes Odile Dicks-Mireaux, Holly McLean, Daiva Petrulyte, Anna Munro and Sylvie Org (for "Please Remain Calm")Nominated
Outstanding Hairstyling for a Limited Series or Movie Julio Parodi and Jovana JovanavicNominated
Outstanding Make-up for a Limited Series or Movie (Non-Prosthetic) Daniel Parker and Natasha Nikolic-DunlopNominated
Outstanding Prosthetic Makeup for a Series, Limited Series, Movie or Special Barrie Gower, Paul Spateri and Daniel ParkerNominated
Outstanding Music Composition for a Limited Series, Movie, or Special (Original Dramatic Score) Hildur Guðnadóttir (for "Please Remain Calm")Won
Outstanding Production Design for a Narrative Period or Fantasy Program (One Hour or More) Luke Hull, Karen Wakefield and Claire Levinson-GendlerWon
Outstanding Single-Camera Picture Editing for a Limited Series or Movie Jinx Godfrey (for "Open Wide, O Earth")Nominated
Simon Smith (for "Please Remain Calm")Won
Outstanding Sound Editing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Special Stefan Henrix, Joe Beal, Michael Maroussas, Harry Barnes, Andy Wade, Anna Wright (for "1:23:45")Won
Outstanding Sound Mixing for a Limited Series or Movie Stuart Hilliker and Vincent Piponnier (for "1:23:45")Won
Outstanding Special Visual Effects in a Supporting Role Max Dennison, Lindsay McFarlane, Claudius Christian Rauch, Clare Cheetham, Laura Bethencourt Montes, Steven Godfrey, Luke Letkey, Christian Waite and William Foulser (for "1:23:45")Won
Producers Guild of America Awards Outstanding Producer of Limited Series Television Craig Mazin, Carolyn Strauss, Jane Featherstone, Johan Renck, Chris Fry and Sanne WohlenbergWon [126]
Royal Television Society Awards Mini-SeriesChernobylNominated [127]
Actor (Male)Jared HarrisNominated
Writer (Drama)Craig MazinWon
Royal Television Society Craft & Design AwardsDirector – DramaJohan RenckNominated [128]
Music – Original ScoreHildur GuðnadóttirWon
Costume Design – DramaOdile Dicks-MireauxWon
Make Up Design – DramaDaniel ParkerWon
Photography – Drama & ComedyJakob IhreWon
Production Design – DramaLuke Hull, Clare Levinson-GendlerWon
Sound – DramaStefan Henrix, Stuart Hilliker, Joe Beal, Harry Barnes, Michael MaroussasWon
Satellite Awards Best Miniseries ChernobylWon [129]
Best Actor – Miniseries or TV Film Jared HarrisWon
Best Supporting Actor – Series, Miniseries or TV Film Stellan SkarsgårdNominated
Best Supporting Actress – Series, Miniseries or TV Film Emily WatsonNominated
Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Miniseries or Television Movie Jared HarrisNominated [130]
Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Miniseries or Television Movie Emily WatsonNominated
Sentinel AwardsTopic: Nuclear safetyChernobylWon [131]
Society of Composers and Lyricists AwardsOutstanding Original Score for a Television or Streaming ProductionHildur GuðnadóttirWon [132]
Television Critics Association Awards Program of the Year ChernobylNominated [133]
Outstanding Achievement in Movies, Miniseries and Specials Won
Televisual Bulldog AwardsBest Drama One-off or SerialChernobylWon [134]
Best Cinematography
Best Music
Best VFX
Venice TV Awards Best TV Series ChernobylWon [135]
Visual Effects Society Awards Outstanding Supporting Visual Effects in a Photoreal Episode Max Dennison, Lindsay McFarlane, Clare Cheetham, Paul Jones and Claudius Christian Rauch (for "1:23:45")Won [136]
World Soundtrack Awards Television Composer of the YearHildur GuðnadóttirWon [137]
Writers Guild of America Awards Long Form – Original Craig MazinWon [138]

See also


  1. 1 2 Co-executive producer.
  2. Episodes were broadcast concurrently on HBO and Sky Atlantic, on Monday at 9:00 pm EDT/Tuesday at 2:00 am BST respectively.
  3. Live+Same Day data.
  4. Live+7 Days four-screen data.
  5. Ukrainian for "Memory Eternal", an exclamation used in Eastern Orthodox funeral or memorial services.

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