Hot on the heels of the Russian government rebuking HBO’s Chernobyl and announcing it was developing its own series about the disaster, the Communists Of Russia, a Marxist-Leninist political party separate from the larger Communist Party Of The Russian Federation, have called for a libel lawsuit against series creator Craig Mazin and the show’s producers. The party cites Article 129 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation, which forbids “the spreading of deliberately falsified information that denigrates the honour and dignity of another person or undermines his reputation” in “a public speech or in a publicly performed work.”
Furthermore, the party claims to have asked Russia’s TV regulator, Roskomnadzor, to block local access to the series, which is reportedly wildly popular in the country. For its part, the Roskomnadzor tells Deadline it has yet to receive a formal inquiry, but would “examine the request if it’s filed and would respond as stipulated by law.”
A statement from party member Sergey Malinkovich (via TheWrap) calls the show a tool of “ideological manipulation on the part of HBO.” He does, however, admit that the show gets the chronology and “key moments” of the disaster correct, which is more than the Kremlin will admit—as we previously reported, their aforementioned series is said to incorporate a “conspiracy theory” inserting a nefarious American CIA operative into the power plant on that fateful night.
“The TV series about the dramatic events of April 1986 is an ideological tool designed to defame and demonize the image of the Soviet government and Soviet people,” reads the statement. “Although the chronology of the series’s events and key moments most of them correspond to reality, motivation, the actions of the heroes themselves, the order of relationships in institutions and collectives, and finally, the moral climate in Soviet society itself is the first example of an absolute lie.”
Chernobyl wrapped up its five-episode run on June 3. Read our review of the miniseries here.