Thursday 1st December, 2016: Windfall Films, part of Argonon, has been commissioned to produce a 60-minute unique access special, Inside Chernobyl’s Mega Tomb, for BBC Four. The one-off documentary is commissioned by Diene Petterle at BBC Four and follows the construction of a 36,000 tonne steel structure to entomb the radioactive waste left behind by the 1986 Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant disaster.
Inside Chernobyl’s Mega Tomb films with the team of international engineers - close up - as they race against the clock to create the new structure before Chernobyl's original concrete sarcophagus – built to last just thirty years – collapses. Radiation levels make it impossible for workers to build the new shelter directly over the old reactor. So engineers are erecting the new steel megastructure – taller than the tower of Big Ben and three times heavier than the Eiffel Tower - to one side and will then face the challenge of having to slide the largest land-based object ever moved, into place over the old reactor.
Carlo Massarella, Creative Director and Executive Producer, Windfall Films, commented: “Inside Chernobyl’s Mega Tomb offers a unique insight into this trailblazing endeavour. Specialists from over 30 countries have joined forces to realise the $1.5 billion project that will protect European skies for the next 100 years. The 60-minute special explores both the human – and technical – challenges of building the mammoth structure on a radioactive worksite through the experiences of the core crew involved.”
Diene Petterle, BBC Commissioning Editor, Science added: “We’re thrilled to have such close access to this process and bring BBC Four viewers insight into this huge feat of engineering and the continuing impact of one of the most significant nuclear disasters of last century.”
Inside Chernobyl’s Mega Tomb joins a captivating roster of programming from the BAFTA and Emmy award-winning Windfall Films. The programme is produced and directed by Martin Gorst. Executive Producer is Windfall Films’ Creative Director, Carlo Massarella.
Inside Chernobyl’s Mega Tomb will air on Wednesday 21st December, 9pm, on BBC Four.
A 60-minute version of the film, produced by Windfall Films (part of Argonon) for BBC Four in association with NOVA/WGBH, PBS Distribution, and France Television, NHK and N24 is set to air in Spring 2017 on PBS in the US.
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Notes to Editors:
About Windfall Films
Windfall Films has established an international reputation as a producer of innovative television programmes. Windfall has applied its distinctive style and meticulous standards to a range of genres, including science, social, and history documentaries, factually-based dramas and original format shows. The company has collected numerous awards for their programming, including BAFTAs for Inside Nature’s Giants, D-Day: As It Happens and Murder Trial, an Emmy and National Academy of Sciences Award for Your Inner Fish and Jackson Hole Awards for Inside Einstein's Mind and The Bat Man of Mexico.
Windfall is one of the leading producers of science and technology programmes in the UK and became part of Argonon in 2014. Highlights include: The Fifteen Billion Pound Railway and The Wonder of Dogs for BBC Two, Spider House for BBC Four, Easter Eggs Live, Foxes Live: Wild in the City and Inside Nature's Giants for Channel 4; My Floating Home for More4; Strip The City and Strip The Cosmos for the Science Channel; Railroad Alaska for Destination America & Animal Planet, Big Kitchens for FYI and Making North America for PBS NOVA.
Argonon is the award-winning super-indie production group, formed by Leopard Films CEO James Burstall in 2011. This unique group of companies delivers world class entertainment with creative and diverse talent both on and off screen. Leopard Drama, Leopard Films, Leopard USA and Remedy Productions were the first to join the group; Remedy Canada launched in June 2012 backed by Argonon; Transparent Television and joint venture BriteSpark Films joined in 2013; followed by Windfall Films and joint venture Blacklisted Films who also joined Argonon in 2014. Argonon Group has been formed to bring together world class talent across the transmedia landscape, with headquarters in London, New York and Vancouver. Content from the group includes Emmy and BAFTA award-winning factual, factual entertainment, entertainment, drama, arts, comedy and children’s programming.