On April 26, 1986, the world watched in horror as a reactor exploded at Chernobyl, leading to one of the worst nuclear power plant disasters in history. Even nearly three decades later, it serves as a cautionary tale, and a reminder of the irreversible human and environmental impact of a meltdown. But not much further away from the site is another Russian curiosity, one shrouded in its own controversy, and the upcoming documentary “The Russian Woodpecker” dives deep into the tale.
Directed by Chad Gracia, and from the producing team behind “Pussy Riot” and “The Square,” the film explores Duga, a huge Russian antenna built near Chernobyl, possibly as a Cold War weapon to infiltrate Western communications. But for Ukrainian artist Fedor Alexandrovich, he believes the role of Duga goes much further, and that it may have played a role in the Chernobyl disaster as well. As he explains in this exclusive clip, the proximity to the nuclear site is interesting because “there are no coincidences.”
“The Russian Woodpecker” has its first screening at Sundance on Saturday, January 24th. Watch below.