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TNT (Russian TV channel)

TNT (Your New Television. Russian: ТНТ, Твоё Новое Телевидение, Tvoyo Novoye Televideniye, or Television of new Millennium (Russian: ТНТ, Телевидение нового тысячелетия, Televideniye Novogo Tisyachelyetiya)) is a Russian federal[3] TV channel founded in 1997[4] and considered one of the five most popular TV channels in Russia.[5][6][7] In the beginning of 2012, it reached more than 104 million people.[8]

Второй логотип телеканала ТНТ.png
TNT logo used in 2002–09
Launched1 January 1998
Owned byGazprom Media
Picture formatSECAM
576i (SDTV) 16:9
1080i (HDTV)
Audience share7.9% overall and 16.6% in 18-30 (Q3 2013, TNS Russia [1] and TNT [2])
SloganFeel our love! (Russian: Почувствуй нашу любовь!) (2007–present)
The most powerful TV brand (Russian: Самый сильный телевизионный бренд) (September 23, 2015–present)
Broadcast areaRussia
HeadquartersMoscow, Russia

The target audience is viewers 14 to 44 years old, but its core demo is 18 to 30.[9] The channel focuses on entertainment, specializing mostly on TV shows and comedy series.[9]

Since 2001, it has been member of the Gazprom-Media Holding, the flagship TV channel of the sub-holding Gazprom-Media Entertainment TV, founded in 2015.[9][10]

The TNT business model is a television network. Its main source of income is advertisements.[7] The TV signal passes through a system of the TNT’s regional TV stations as well as to the company’s regional partners. Those, in turn, get part of the advertising time within the framework of the content provided by TNT. The TNT channel delivers its signal via a number of satellites in four different orbits that allow its 27 television stations and more than 350 subdivisions to receive it in the corresponding time zones. The TNT signal is then received and further redistributed by the local network stations broadcasting to most big cities as well as 5,900 smaller communities of the Russian Federation.

TNT reserves 100% of authors’ rights to all original shows and owns two of the largest production companies in the country: Comedy Club Production and Good Story Media. It also has exclusive contracts with a number of leading Russian showrunners.

Since 2016, TNT-TeleNet JSC is directed by Artur Janibekyan, head of the sub-holding Gazprom-Media Entertainment TV.[11]



Founding and start-upEdit

TNT TV channel was founded in September 1997 as part of the Media-Most holding.[12] The general director of the new channel became Sergei Skvortsov,[13] invited by the First Deputy Chairman of the Board of Directors of the holding Igor Malashenko, who, together with his deputy Pavel Korchagin, and the rest of the team, a year before managed to launch the first Russian non-state television network - STS. The new channel was also initially founded as a network, focusing primarily on the interests of the regional viewers.[14]

The channel was designed for the sake of family entertainment and, with the main goal of attracting the widest possible audience. For this purpose, from the very beginning it used to broadcast a great number of feature films, including blockbusters, documentaries, television series, including soap operas, talk shows, game shows, video clips of both Russian and foreign musicians, musical programs, including concerts of Bardic songs, humorous, news, children's entertainment and educational programs, cartoons and so on.[15] Within the first five years of its existence, sports programs and shows were also widely shown on the channel. The editorial house of the satellite operator NTV-Plus, specializing in sports news also took part in the process of its founding.[16]

According to the idea of the its creators, the channel was supposed to compete in the market, primarily with STS and NTV, due to the quality of content, democracy, and a kind of exclusivity of its contents, when the viewer is offered "what other people do not have" - for example, little-known videos filmed by European and American companies, - or something resembling other channels’ shows, but “made in a different way": e.g. “a talk show concerning everyday life" in the prime time. In order to further develop the latter idea, a television company "Russian Video - Channel 11," the TNT St. Petersburg partner, was ordered to shoot a detective series called "Streets of Broken Lights" about the everyday life of the Russian police “working in a polite way”.

The signal is being delivered via the following satellites: Intelsat 604 (60 ° E) for the European part of Russia, immediately in a digital form (for the decoding of which the partner stations received the necessary equipment), and Intelsat 704 (64 ° E) for the eastern part Country, having been working for the first six months in an analog mode.

On January 1, 1998, the channel began its broadcasting services. The abbreviation TNT itself due to its creators was to mean "Твоё новое телевидение" (Your New Television).


The TV series "Streets of Broken Lights" met expectations and provided TNT with a stable, though comparatively small (2-3%) audience within the first year of the broadcast. By the middle of the year the channel could be viewed already in 100 cities of Russia.[17] Inspired by the first success, the channel's creators ordered another video series called "The National Security Agent" about the adventures of the FSB agent. Its first season started on January 1, 1999, the series attracted the attention of the audience, but failed to repeat the resounding success of the "Cops". In March 1999, Sergei Skvortsov left NTV-Holding, and Pavel Korchagin took the job of the TNT's general director.

By this time, the channel had a well-functioning production system for its own series and a couple of talk shows with Vladimir Solovyov, who had just come on television, and periodically showed television premieres of blockbusters. In a word, the channel was absolutely apolitical, there was no clear ether concept, its target audience was not defined, its management set any special tasks for the team. The possibilities of channel’s development under these conditions were exhausted.[18][13] In 1999 the TNT managed to get two TEFI awards for the first season of "The Cops" (in the nomination "Television feature film or TV series" and "Television project of the year") and the 8th place in the spectators’ rating with 3.2% of the audience, while the audience of the STS (its main competitor) was twice as big.[19]


In June 2000, the TNT channel launched its own news program in the Moscow region. News for the program "Today in the Capital" was made by the NTV, belonging to the same holding, and the TNT bought this content, and it was supposed, according to Skvortsov, to broadcast these materials throughout Russia: "Our city news will be interesting in any city".[20] The staff of the program "Today in the Capital" made of young correspondents of the NTV Information Service, students and recent graduates of the Faculty of Journalism of the Moscow State University from 1975-1980.[21]

On August 27, 2000, after a fire on the Ostankino television tower, the TNT television channel was one of the few that did not stop broadcasting and remained on air.[22][23] Moreover, the TNT temporarily gave part of its airtime to the NTV channel for its information program "Today".[24] In these days, TNT ranked fourth among all TV channels in Moscow.[25]

In 2000-2001, the channel, along with other media, Media-Most (NTV, NTV Plus, the publishing house Seven Days) was on the brink of liquidation.[26]

In the spring of 2001, while the ownership of the NTV television company was being changed, the TNT showed the NTV programs. After the seizure and the redistribution of the NTV property, most of the journalists temporarily switched to the TNT until Boris Berezovsky's proposed Yevgeny Kiselyov to head the TV-6[27][28]/ After the transition of some journalists to TV-6, the channel changed its directors, instead of Pavel Korchagin, who left for the sixth TV channel, Andrey Skutin became the general director.[29] In November 2001, the TNT channel became the property of the media holding company Gazprom-Media.[30][31]


Prior to the 2002–03 season, the TNT channel did not have any special policy; it was aimed at a wide range of viewers, broadcasting documentaries, cartoons, television series, etc.[15] There were perspectives for the TNT to get re-profiled into a sports channel,[32] with such a kind of concept the channel claimed to go on air within the broadcast of the 6th frequency channel in Moscow,[33] but lost to the competition. In the fall of 2002, this idea was partially realized - a TNT-Sports program, created with the participation of “NTV Plus Sport”,[34] was added to the broadcasting grid. At first, it was broadcast in the daytime, but in 2003, due to low ratings, its broadcast was shifted to the night block, and later on stopped.[citation needed]

Not having the means to buy and produce blockbusters, TNT focused on new and cheaper broadcasting forms, and this approach proved itself reasonable: the TNT's audience soon increased significantly, from the initial 2.7% to 5.4% at the end of 2002.[35] The rating breakthrough was primarily due to the including a notorious talk show "Okna" hosted by Dmitry Nagiyev into the grid, as well as adding to it several other programs launched with the participation of a new team of managers led by Roman Petrenko, the former CEO of the STS.[36][37][38] On November 15 the “old-fashioned” TNT aired the last TV program called "Today’s day", which show managed very rapidly to become the least popular and the least-rated though it used to be extremely popular before.[39][40]

In the end of 2002, the channel developed its new concept of "The TNT helps you!".[41] The TNT began to position itself as "a unique TV channel that does not only entertain but also assists you",[42] and since February 1, 2003 it has completely changed the topics of its shows as well as the entire broadcasting grid.[43] One of the first programs created within the new concept was "Moscow: Instructions for the Proper Use", which replaced "Today’s Day". In general, the priority areas of the TNT were "reality shows" and a variety of alternative entertainment programs.[44] The closed joint-stock company "TNT-Teleset" was transformed into an open one. With the direct participation of Roman Petrenko and Dmitry Troitsky, a number of low-rating and low-profitable projects were closed on the channel, and replaced by some original ones: "The Forbidden Zone", "The Famine", "Reparation School", "The Taxi", "The Child Robot" , "Big Brother", "Dom", "Dom-2".[45] Broadcasting of the "Dom-2" show became a "springboard" for the career of some popular TV hosts: Ksenia Sobchak, Kseniya Borodina and Olga Buzova:


Since September 1, 2003, the animated block "Nickelodeon on TNT" started going on air in the morning and in the daytime.[47] Also in September, the TNT began broadcasting a comedy series "Sasha + Masha", which has since then become one of the most rated products of the TNT channel. 5 seasons had been filmed, and the show continued until September 2005, after which it was broadcast once again.

In April 2005, the staged talk show of Dmitry Nagiyev "Okna"[48] stopped being aired, and the TNT started broadcasting instead an even more shocking program "Sex with Anfisa Chekhova", which can be characterized as a "television erotic show".

Creating the program "Comedy Club" for the TNT turned out to be a very significant event. Actually, this was a television version of a stand-show, invented by several players of the KVN team "New Armenians" two years earlier:


The show "Comedy Club" for many years have become a symbol of the TNT promoting a whole galaxy of "resident"-standuppers on the TV screen, generating a fashion for the so-called "new kind of humor".[50]


The new 2006–07 season was started not in September, in the usual way, but in July, wishing to attract the attention of the 30+ audience, which continues watching TV in their summer cottages. In order to expand its reality show concept, a number of new programs, attributed by the channel's management to this type of shows, were introduced into the broadcast grid. Those were "The Candidate" with Vladimir Potanin, "Nanny to the rescue", "Club of former wives", "Wife exchange", "A different life».[51]

According to the former general director of the channel Roman Petrenko, by that time TNT specialists “had studied almost the entire experience of the TV companies of all around the world and picked up the ideas seeming to have a greater potential, as well and even hired some British producers:[51]

At the same time, the channel managers began to publicly announce their dissatisfaction with the "boring" project "Dom-2", and came up with the idea to give it up for one or two seasons, despite its record ratings.[51] However, none of the new programs was able to reach the popularity of "Dom-2", and in 2017 the project still remains on air, having become the longest-lasting reality show on the Russian television according to the version of the "Book of Records of Russia".[52]

In March 2006, a comedy series named "Happy Together" was aired, which was an adaptation of the American sitcom "Married... with Children". Lasting for 7 years, the series became the most "long-lasting" one as well as one of the most successful sitcoms on TNT.

On November 4, 2006 the project “Nasha Russia” was launched, and is based on popular English sketch series "Little Britain". It is a humorous TV-show shot by "Comedy Club Production" with Mikhail Galustyan and Sergei Svetlakov in the leading roles. The show was very popular, some jokes of its characters became extremely popular among the people, and the characters themselves turned into symbols (for example, Ravshan and Dzhamshut - foreign workers having come to Russia).[53] There appeared 5 seasons, in 2016 (5 years after the completion of the original series) it was followed by a spin-off called "The Bearded Guy. Understand and forgive", developing one of the storylines of “Nasha Russia”, starring Mikhail Galustyan in the role of an unlucky Ryazan guard Sashka Borodach. This character also actually became notorious among the people, having become a symbol of a negligent worker.[54][55][56][57]

Also in November, the TNT style itself was updated: the channel started promoting the people, directly or indirectly connected with it (i.e. the hosts, the actors from TV series, the members of the reality show "Dom-2" and the professionals of the "Comedy Club". Social movie clips, show and advertisement openings with slogans: "TNT about life. TNT about love. TNT for fun “were launched simultaneously within a monthly advertising campaign throughout Russia.[50]

The autumn advertising campaign was then followed by a spring one, becoming more extensive, held under the slogan "Feel our love". According to its inspirer, Alexander Dulerain, "in the entire new advertising history, we wanted to overturn all the concepts familiar to the viewer, to shock him." In a series of short promo-commercials, advertising the "stars" of the TNT (Ksenia Sobchak, Olga Buzova, Alyona Vodonaeva, Garik Kharlamov, Timur Rodriguez, Pavel Volya and Mikhail Galustyan) – the multiple meanings of some phrases were played with, while trying to keep a delicate balance between glamorous romance and provocative humor.[58]

2007 was the year of birth of a new TV format - competitions of humorists and whole stand-up teams. In April, there started a show named “Laughter without rules”, organized by the “Comedy Club”. Young humorists competed for large money prizes, and then the winner competed in the following show - "A Crazy League." The show "Laughter Without Rules" lasted for 10 seasons, the last program was released in December 2009 in the recording, after the death of one of its hosts – Vladimir Turchinsky. In August 2010, the show was restored under the title "Comedy Battle" and is dedicated to the memory of Turchinsky. The show continued until the end of 2016, and the following year it was replaced by the program "The Open Microphone".

In 2007, for the first time the TNT got the title of the "Best TV Channel of the Year" according to the version of "Russian Entertainment Awards" (an annual national award in the field of entertainment industry).[59]


By the beginning of 2008, only the most successful of the reality TV projects on the TNT channel stayed on the TNT which were: "Dom-2" and a brand-new "mystical TV show" "Bitva extrasensov".[45]

On January 24, the TNT showed its first parody comedy, shot with the assistance of the Comedy Club: "The Best Movie", with the famous Garik Kharlamov, Mikhail Galustyan and Pavel Volya in the main roles. Together with them, such stars of the Russian cinema as Armen Dzhigarkhanyan and Valery Barinov, as well as some young actors, and many TV and media professionals were invited to participate.

The film is a kind of "response" to the American film "Scary Movie", and, according to the producers, their main task was "not just get back the cost of the movie and make more money with its sequel, but to create a successful parody comedy, a new genre, yet unknown to the Russian spectators".[60] During the production of the picture, we had to face the problem of a lack of "raw material", because the Russian movie industry does not produce a number of blockbusters comparable to that of Hollywood. For this reason, in addition to the Russian movies (“Night Watch” , “The 9th Company”, “Shadowboxing”, and “Bimmer”), "The Best Movie" parodies some foreign films ("Star Wars", "The Matrix", "Pirates of the Caribbean", "Bruce Almighty"), as well as some Russian television series ("Brigada", and "The Truckers ").[61]

With a budget of $5 million (and a same amount spent on advertising), "The Best Movie" raised more than $30 million at the box office, setting a new record of gains for the first weekend in Russia and the CIS countries ($19.2 million),[60] though the gains for the second weekend went down drastically – showing a drop of 72%. That happened due to bad critics and the negative reaction of the viewers.[62] A year later, "The Best Movie 2" was released, and in January 2011 - "The Best Movie 3" followed, built on the same patterns with Kharlamov in the main role. Both sequels were shot by another film company, “Monumental Pictures”, but followed the fate of the first movie: a good start, and a collapse during the second week and some profit at the end.

2008 was marked by a very clear and targeted appeal of the TNT channel to the youth audience. On August 25, a completely original sitcom "Univer" was launched, telling about students living in the same part of a hostel, which is the main place of action. The series was invented and produced by Semyon Slepakov and Vyacheslav Dusmukhametov; Pyotr Tochilin, director of the notorious "Internet comedy" "Khottabych", was invited to direct the project:[63]

On December 19 there premiered of another series - "Love within a District", which shows young people belonging to a different social group. This project was able to last for only 2 seasons, while "Univer" was very successful, and together with its sequel "Univer. New Dorm" (from the third season again going under the name "Univer") continues to the present day, including more than 500 episodes. In 2013, the spin-off of "Univer" was launched under the name “SashaTanya”, which tells the story of one of the couples from the original sitcom, and which also won the sympathy of the audience.[64]

At the end of the year, there was another iconic premiere - a female pop-comedy show “Made in Woman”, soon renamed into “Comedy Woman”, by analogy with the purely male “Comedy Club” and guided by the latter. The project was created by the participant of the Moscow team of the KVN "Megapolis" Natalia Yeprikyan in 2006 as a female humorous club cabaret show. The famous KVN-girls were involved in the project - Elena Borshcheva, Ekaterina Skulkina, Ekaterina Barnabas, Ekaterina Baranova,[65] Marina Kravets,[66] Maria Kravchenko, Polina Sibagatullina, Tatyana Morozova,[67] Natalia Medvedeva,[68] Marina Bochkareva. Egor Druzhinin sometimes appeared as a show host.

For the TV, the project was reformatted, this including the female participants and their characters.

In autumn 2009 another project was launched, which was a comedy-drama, named "Barvikha", about the school life of the "bright young things" inside an elite cottage community. This project was preceded by its creators announcing the start of a "new generation’s series", looking completely "movie-like" (as the series was shot in the HD format), carefully written dialogues, highly-professional acting (the authors visited the real village of Barvikha to get used to their “reality” and to the manners of its inhabitants). The series raised some uneasy questions about the interaction of schoolchildren with their mates from families having a different social status, which turned it into the only "non-funny" series shown by an entertainment channel (though the movie did contain some comic episodes).[70][71] Two seasons (one of 20 and the other of 15 series) have been shot, of which the second 2011 was shown in 2011 under the name "Bright Young Things. Barvikha-2").

In 2009, the TNT channel became a general information partner of the project called “The Year of the Young”, in particular, supporting the youth volunteer action "The Train of Youth". At that time he TNT showed more than 500 commercials. Within the year, the channel supported 12 information campaigns concerning healthy lifestyles, the prevention of the AIDS, combating the tobacco and drug addiction, supporting donorship, inclusive education, counteracting human trafficking, etc. A year earlier, TNT acted as an informational sponsor of the “Year of the Family” project and organized the Election campaign videos for the campaign "Do not be a “vegetable” - vote!" In November 2009, the TNT channel won the prize for "Contribution into the Development of Social Projects", established by the Coalition of Nonprofit Organizations, taking the 1st place in the nomination "A Socially Responsible Media: for the Active Placement of Social Advertising on Air".[72]


In 2010, Alexander Dulerain took the job of the general producer of the TNT, replacing Dmitri Troitsky, who left the channel.[73] The same year, the channel hosted two high-profile sitcom premieres: "The Interns" in March, and “The Swell Guys" in November went on the air.

The authour of “The Interns", Vyacheslav Dusmukhametov graduated from the Chelyabinsk State Medical Academy. His studying in this institution, as well as his subsequent therapy internship and further medical practice became the source of the jokes and the situations one can see in the series:[74]

Like "Univer", "The Interns" do not just copy American sitcoms. Moreover, the observer of the magazine "The Art of Cinema" Olga Ganzhara agrees with the opinion Ivan Okhlobystin (who plays the main part in the movie), that "The Interns" is more than just a traditional situational comedy, that it "has discovered a new genre – having something in common with a classic kind of TV series and a sitcom based on "an incredible playwriting material".[76][77] This "expansion" was also evident within the filming process: "The Interns" were being filmed slowly, like a real "full-size movie", with rehearsals, a lot of takes, an ultra-high resolution digital camera "Red One", and a number of purely "sitcom" techniques, like a laugh track had to be given up.[74] As a result, "The Interns", according to Dusmukhametov, led to further expansion of the TNT audience from 18-30 to 14-44.[75]

Along with the scenario basis, the clue to the phenomenal success of the project was the work of Ivan Okhlobystin himself: his doctor, Andrei Evgenievich Bykov, the head of the therapeutic department of the hospital and the head of the internship department, is the central figure of the entire movie, and the importance of this personality is so big that the rest of the hospital employees and, in fact, the interns themselves, seem to be a kind of "Bykov's army", corresponding to one of several traits of his character.[76] Okhlobystin, through a "paradoxical and ironic rationalism with which he tends to percept the reality," according to a TV critic Valery Zaitsev, creates around him a special, "Okhbystin" space.[78] In a way he reminds very much Hugh Laurie, the British actor playing the main role in the American television series Doctor House. However, the similarity ends there: the character of Okhlobystin, as well as the mentality of all the TV series shot by TNT, is purely Russian, full of love, respect and tenderness as to the profession of the doctor and human suffering.[76] It's no accident that Dr. Bykov regularly "mocks" at a foreign colleague, and in one of the first episodes, having learned that the tiresome intern Levin, just like House, is going to treat rare and complex illnesses, he comes back with a question: who is going then to treat ordinary patients, filling up the hospitals?[78]

The last episode of "The Interns" was aired in February 2016, and in June the series got the TEFI award as "The Best TV serial comedy / Sitcom".[79]

The inscription "Happiness coming soon", being very popular among the inhabitants of Perm is actually part of the title sequence of the "Swell Guys" series. In real life, this inscription is located at the Kama River Quai near the railway station Perm I

An experimental series “Swell Guys”,[80] being also kind of a reality TV, unique for the Russian television, aired on November 8, 2010 [82], and soon took the second position in the spectators’ ratings, immediately following "The Interns".[81] The idea of the project belonged to Anton Zaitsev - one of the founders of Good Story Media and a player of the Perm KVN team "Parma". The director of the movie was Jeanne Kadnikova, and the main role of Kolyan was played by Nikolai Naumov ; both of them are also leading players in “Parma”.[82][83]

The shooting of the "Swell Guys" series has been done in Perm and the action of the movie is also taking place there. Kolyan already has a vast experience of contacts with law enforcement agencies, is caught red-handed at a petty theft, and, in order to avoid going to jail, he agrees to participate in a reality show. Now a camera operator follows him everywhere, filming his life, work and friends, and the only requirement for Kolyan is to live honestly.[82] In such a simple way, the authors of "Swell Guys" involved the whole city in the production of the series: most of the characters (and in the series there are more than 150), - are non-professional actors, ordinary urban residents, often acting under their own names. Sitkom had no fixed scenario, but was shot on the basis of an episode-after-episode plan, the dialogues were invented by the actors, the director and the producers:[84][85]

A whole gallery of recognizable city characters passes before the spectator: those are "bright young people", students, party girls, marginalized people, traders, hard workers, managers, businessmen, militaries, policemen, criminals, of course, "the Guys" - Kolyan and his friends. In several months, the whole team that worked over the sitcom got famous in Perm as well as in all the country. The series was highly appreciated by the actor Konstantin Khabensky,[80] the captain of the national volleyball team of Serbia Bojan Janić, the writer Alexei Ivanov:[81]

According to TNS Russia, "The Swell Guys" have become the absolute leader among the Russian movies designed for the audience of 18–30 years. According to Nikolai Novichkov, the Minister of Culture of the Perm Region: "The Swell Guys" has made Perm famous in several ways." The nomination of a “criminal art” series for the award of the Perm Region in the domain of culture and art in 2010 caused a stormy controversy.[87] Finally, the award was received by five members of "The Swell Guys" team: Anton Zaitsev, Zhanna Kadnikova, the creative producer Yuri Ovchinnikov, the production director Sergei Dolgushin, as well as by Kolyan himself – the leading actor Nikolai Naumov.[88][89]

Of all the premieres of the following year (2011) the most successful was a situational comedy named "Zaitsev + 1" about the life of a clumsy student, who suffers from a split personality. The story was invented by Denis Kosyakov, and the main characters, Sasha Zaitsev and his alter ego Fedor, were performed by Philip Kotov and Mikhail Galustyan. The first episode was aired on April 11 getting a 30.4% share in the audience of 18–32 years old, that night TNT was the most watched channel from 20:30 to 21:00 h. Within the audience of 6–54 years old, the series also showed the attention of an impressive per cent of people: 16%.[90] "Zaitsev + 1" is also remarkable for the fact that its creators for the first time managed to get a world-famous actor to play one of the main parts in the Russian comedy series. A character named Zhora, the alter-ego of Zaitsev's father, who appears in season three and, also suffers from a split personality, was embodied by Gerard Depardieu, for whom this was also a new experience of participation in a sitcom.[91][92]

The representatives of the channel promised to continue to attract top-level foreign actors to participate in their movies.[91]

In the summer of 2011, TNT-Teleset became a co-owner of the Samara regional channel "TRK SKAT", having purchased 26% of its shares from its owners.[93]

On November 2, 2011, FAS included TNT into the list of federal channels and published the data concerning the share of different channels in national and regional advertising. The share of TNT at the national level was 9.3%, hence at that time it was occupying the fifth place on the national scale.[94]


On February 6, 2012, in response to the numerous requests of the TV viewers, the TNT channel started broadcasting in the "Rainbow TV" channel system with the help of the ABS-1 satellite in the GMT +2 time zone[95] on the 6th of February, 2012 (since December 5, 2014 the "Rainbow TV" broadcasting has been discontinued).

April 1, 2012 Tricolor TV turned its TV channel into a paid one. On April 4, the TV channel interrupted the signal delivery to the operator, and 7 days later it returned to the free mode.

On the wave of success of the Moscow series “Univer” and the "Swell Guys" filmed in Perm,[96] (though one of the seasons of this series was also made in Moscow), TNT started filming the sitcom called "Girrrls" sitcom, which started on air in April 2012. The story of four girls from Saratov who hav come to win the capital and are renting one apartment for all is not original, this romantic comedy with some elements of melodrama does not contain anything unusual for this kind of movie, but its heroines attract the attention of the young, mostly female audience:[97]

The series was shot in Moscow, with Moscow actors, and the choice of Saratov as the girls’ "small homeland" was due to the desire to make the movie sound authentic, since the speech of the inhabitants of this provincial city does but slightly differ from that of the Russian capital.[98] The series has been shown for 5 years in a row, the sixth season must start in autumn 2017.[99]

On December 14, 2012, the TNT television channel was included into the second multiplex set of the Russian digital television.[100]

On January 27, 2013 the channel TNT showed the first three series of an experimental fiction series called "Through my Eyes", a kind of pseudo-realistic thriller, the shooting of which was finalized in 2011. This series was the first in the world, completely shot using a "POV camera" technique. The narrative is nonlinear; every series is shot “from the point of view” of one of the characters and thus reveals his or her personality and history.[101] In a small town there happens a series of strange and sinister events: people disappear, die or suddenly fall into a strange coma-like state; then, coming back to normal, they gain superhuman abilities, and a mysterious "black smoke" has something to do with this.

The idea of the project belonged to Ilya Kulikov, and Zaur Bolotayev was promoted director of "Through my Eyes". He was also the production director, although the shooting process was carried out by the actors themselves, with the help of a camera fixed to a specially designed contraption.

"Through my Eyes" became the first product of the TNT, advertised as a "movie series":[102]

The company "Fox Television Studios" bought the rights to create an American adaptation of the series also named “Through my eyes”, and it was announced that the filming process had been started. The producer of the project is Lawrence Bender, a regular partner of Quentin Tarantino.[103]

The TNT also considered the possibility of shooting a second season of "Through my Eyes", but finally the idea was given up, and the series contains 19 episodes with an open ending. As an experimental format, "Through my Eyes" played an important role in the TNT movie production, the impulse the creative team of the channel received while working on this product, eventually spurred some great dramatic formats to appear.[104]

In July 2013, Roman Petrenko took up the chairmanship of the TNT-TeleNet board of directors, and Igor Goichberg became its new general director of TNT.[105]


2014 for the TNT TV channel turned out to be extremely eventful. At the end of January Igor Goyhberg, as general director of the TNT, was replaced by Igor Mishin.[106] Within the same year, the TNT channel closed a transaction for the purchase of a production company Good Story Media, having filmed for the TNT the ”Swell Guys” series, though the biggest part of its production used to be done for the STS channel. The sum of the transaction was not announced openly, though analysts called the figure $50 million, the “Kommersant” newspaper reported about 400 million, in total spent on the purchase of the “Comedy Club Production” (in 2012) and “Good Story Media”.[107]

In April, the TNT launched an extremely successful series "P. E. Teacher", with Dmitry Nagiyev in the role of Oleg Evgenevich Fomin nicknamed "Foma", a former criminal forced to get a job as a school teacher of physical education. The premiere series of "P. E. Teacher" within the audience from 14 to 44 years old reached the share of 31.8% in Moscow, which means that the series has been watched by every third viewer, being the best start and an absolute record in the history of the TNT.[109] According to the audience from 6 to 54 years old, the share was lower, but still unprecedentedly high: in Moscow - 22.6%, in Russia as a whole - 23.8%. The share in the youth audience from 18 to 30 years old made 41.8% in Moscow and 36.0% among the television viewers in Russia. In April 2014, according to TNS Gallup, the series took the fifth place in popularity among all programs on Russian television with a rating of 5% and a share of 12.7%.[110]

The main reason for this success, unexpected even by the creators of the series,[109] was the brilliant acting Dmitry Nagiyev, who has managed to make his character very real (although the role has been written exactly for this actor);[111] as well as the authors’ ingenious idea of creating an intersection of two worlds: the rather caricatured "criminal" 90s, the memories of which have faded – at least within a part of the audience of older age, while the youngsters have no idea about this time at all, and the modern world, seemingly more honest and fair[112] (according to the critic of the “Film Art” magazine Vladimir Kolotayev.

In this new world, the brutal, but simple-minded and, in fact, defenseless “Foma” tries to find new solutions for himself and do something that he has never done before - to win the heart of a woman and save a child.[112] Schoolchildren are not afraid of “Foma”, as the P. E. Teacher is teaching them, and they are teaching him in turn. “Foma”’s path is thorny, he constantly makes mistakes, and ruins his own positive results having been achieved with great difficulty, and yet, slowly and painfully, he changes to become better.[112]

The critics pointed out a higher quality of the TNT products, which has first been noticed in the "Interns", and further improved within the "Swell Guys" and became quite obvious in "P. E. Teacher": proved by the great interest of the audience.[113][114]

“P. E. Teacher” was included into the list of "The Top 10 Russian TV series of 2014" according to the magazine "Afisha",[115] and got the prize of the Association of Producers of Cinema and Television in the nominations "Best Comedy TV Series" and "The Best Screenplay" in 2014,[116][117] as well as the TEFI prize in the "Best Sitcom" nomination of 2015.[118] The premiere of the 4th season of “P. E. Teacher” is scheduled for the end of June 2017.

The next precedent in the history of the channel has been the film series "Sweet Life" by Andrei Dzhunkovsky. This project has been made in full accordance with the canons of a "serious movie", it is meaningfully similar to the dramas of Western cable channels,[119] and in comparison with the rest of Russian TV products it can be called even a somewhat elite film.[120] The story develops around a single mother, a go-go dancer from Perm, played by Marta Nosova. Having repulsed the son of the governor, Sasha acquired dangerous enemies, put her own friends, including her sweetheart, against herself, left her child to her grandmother, and left to Moscow, hoping to vanish in the metropolis. The further events are connected with the attempts of the heroine to arrange her life in the capital city and with her relationship with six successful 30-year-old men. In the film there are a lot of blunt scenes and obscene words, thus, two editions of the series were prepared: one for the prime time and the other for nighttime show, uncensored.

"Sweet Life" was the first Russian series, which premiered on the Internet, 2 weeks before being shown on TV (previously, some episodes of "Swell Guys" used to appear on the Internet some hours before the TV premier, in order to attract the TV audience). Amediateka, a paid video service, bought the rights for the series, and on May 15, 2014, Amidoteka made available all the 6 episodes of the first season (in their uncensored version). The parties have not disclosed the amount of the deal:[121]

"Sweet Life" was the first domestic series shown by the service Amediateka. In the rating of the service’s popularity, the series got the second place, letting forward just the first season of the "Game of Thrones". For the first 2 weeks after the placement, "Sweet Life" was watched by almost 11,000 people.[122]

In August 2014, the channel TNT launched a new show called "Dancing", which is an analogue of the American TV show “So You Think You Can Dance”. Contestants compete for the title of the best dancer in Russia and the main prize is an amount of 3 000 000 Russian rubles. The production of the program is carried out by the company Comedy Club Production, for which this dancing show is not the first one - in 2008 TNT broadcast "Dancing without rules", which represented a "battle of dancers", and became a logical continuation of "Laughter without rules", and also a reaction to the rise of the popularity of such shows around the world. If in the "Dance without rules", in addition to the participants who performed various prepared and improvised turns, one could only see the hosts (being also the members of the jury), the "Dancing put forward some choreographers-mentors such as: Egor Druzhinin and Miguel, who became famous with this show.

"Dancing" were not the first popular dancing program to be shown on the Russian television: since 2006, for more than 10 years, the channel "Russia-1" has launched a program named "Dancing with the Stars", in 2013 the same channel showed a season of "Big Dancing", and later, in 2015, "Channel One Russia" started its own mass dancing show - "Dance!" However, the show on TNT turned out to have the greatest impact on the audience and, according to the music critic Boris Barabanov:[123]

A mystical youth thriller "Chernobyl: Zone of Exclusion", staged by an invited Swedish director Anders Banke, turned out to be the "great dramatic format ", the very possibility of which to appear was influenced by the success of the unfinished project "Through My Eyes".[104] The premiere of this series was postponed several times. Its original script created by Ilya Kulikov and Yevgeny Nikishov had been inspired by "The Blair Witch Project", with which it actually is very much alike, though the story actually takes place in the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. Later on, it was completely rewritten by the authors on the request of the creative producer of the TNT channel Valery Fedorovich. The final story tells about five teenagers, who got into the abandoned ghost town of Pripyat while chasing a robber. In this place they suddenly get an opportunity to go back to 1986 and prevent the catastrophe in the Chernobyl nuclear power plant. But the Zone itself turns into their worst enemy.[124] As the story goes on, the initial road-movie transfers into a mystical thriller, then into an action film, a disaster film, and finally, the last series of the first season leaves a possibility for the continuation in the genre of "alternate history" in which the Soviet Union avoids dissolution, and the US is losing its superpower status.

The series was the first in Russia, fully featured in the cinema before the official premiere on television. The premiere show of all the 8 series of the first season was held on September 24, 2014 in the Moscow cinema theater "October", in the presence of many movie and show-business stars. Later the same shows were held in 18 cities of Russia: St. Petersburg, Perm, Krasnoyarsk, Yekaterinburg, Vladivostok, Kemerovo, Novosibirsk, Saratov, Irkutsk, Izhevsk, Omsk, Ulyanovsk, Tula, Barnaul, Tomsk, Ufa, Chelyabinsk and Voronezh.[125]

"Chernobyl. The Zone of Alienation" got very high ratings. The premiere series for the audience from 14 to 44 years collected in Russia a share of 28.4% (in Moscow - 29.9%). The share of the youth audience from 18 to 30 years was 34.9% in Russia, and 40.4% in Moscow. Within the first week after the placement of the series "Chernobyl" on the video portal Rutube, the series collected 6.1 million views, which is 1.6 million more than the first season of "P. E. Teacher", which had previously broken the record of views.[126] Together with "P. E. Teacher", "Chernobyl" was included in the list of "the 10 Best Russian series of 2014" according to the version of the magazine “Afisha”,[127] and also got a number of nominations for the prizes of APKiT, TEFI, WORD, and Georges, though did not manage to win any of these. The second season was filmed in the US and was broadcast on TV-3, which is now changing its format in order to further broadcast mostly premium TV programs and shows.[128]

On September 1, 2014, a new TV channel, called “TNT-Comedy” was launched, replacing the satellite TV channel “Comedy TV”,[129] as well as an international version of the TNT under the same name.


The first season of a youth movie series "about gangsters at the time of hipsters" "The Law of the Stone Jungle" went on air in March 2015. The debut director's work of Ivan Burlakov became another project within the network of the TNT series, the work over which took several years.[130] According to Gazeta.Ru's reporter Yaroslav Zabaluev, this is an "ingenious telecom about some former schoolchildren who decide to become gangsters".[131] The stylistics of the "Law of the Stone Jungle" refers to such cult movies as "Trainspotting" by Danny Boyle and "Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels" by Guy Ritchie, the films of Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez as well as the British teenage series "Misfits" and "Skins".[132]

The pilot episode of the "Law of the Stone Jungle" within the audience from 14 to 44 years old was watched by 18.8% of the population of Russia (in Moscow - 12.8%). The part of the youth audience in Moscow (aged from 18 to 30 years) made 25.0%.[133]

After the enormous success of the "Swell Guys" and "P. E. Teacher", Anton Shchukin produced a more traditional sitcom, based on his own scenario: the TV series "A Private Security Agency" about the everyday life of five unlucky employees of the private security agency named "Cedrus" guarding the shopping center "Nightingale". The characters of this comedy are a little bit light-headed and constantly get into awkward situations, but not because of their own stupidity, as it often happens in such stories, but rather due to their naivety and frankness. One of the starring actors, Sergei Styopin, admits that "he does not even know what part of the scenario is really “fictional”. Anton Shchukin confirms that the "real point" of this sitcom is to try to show the funny within the natural and the habitual:[134]

Sitcom "A Private Security Agency", the humor of which, according to Shchukin, had almost nothing in common with that of "P. E. Teacher", has not managed to repeat the success of the latter, and came to an end after two seasons.

Two more series, filmed to the order of the TNT that went on air in 2015, speak about sex. One of those is a very provocative 16-part series "Infidelity", which deals with the topic of "forbidden" sex, and the youth sitcom "The Sex-Obsessed, or Love is Evil", which the creators did not formally call “a series”, though it is one.

The "Infidelity” movie starring Elena Lyadova speaks of Asya, a woman, who seems at first glance to be hopelessly crushed by family life. However, it turns out that she as well as her husband, has three lovers. In general, one of the “mainspring” of the series is that its characters are not what they seem.[135] During the premiere of the pilot episode of "Infidelity" every fourth Russian aged 18 to 30 years was watching the TNT.[136] In addition, this project was the most successful in the history of the channel in terms of the number and the level of awards it has collected: "Infidelity" became the winner of the TEFI-2016 - awards were won by the director Vadim Perelman, the star Elena Lyadova, and the film itself got the main award in the "Best TV movie / Series" nomination.[137]

"The Sex-Obsessed" is the brainchild of one of the Comedy Club residents Semyon Slepakov, a scandalously famous writer Irina Denezhkina, the author of the novel "Let Me!", and the director Boris Khlebnikov.[138]

The series went on air in November & December 2015, the second season is likely to follow.


On January 1, 2016 the channel TNT4, using but the archive of TNT, started broadcasting on the basis of the channel "TNT-Comedy" and on the former radio frequencies of the channel 2х2.[107]

In February 2016, some changes were made within the corporate structure. As a result, the functions of the General Director were transferred to the sub-holding "GPM Entertainment TV" (the general director of which was Artur Janibekyan), and there was created the director of the channel’s job, which from the very beginning was intended for Igor Mishin[139][140] (who left this position on June 15, 2016).[141][142]

On February 8, the TNT started broadcasting a so-called "Island" sitcom, which though quite traditional in its performance, was very remarkable for its subtext. For the first time a rating product of the TNT channel parodied the channel’s highly fashionable reality show with a 12-year history ("Dom-2"), doing this in quite a postmodern manner.[143] According to the scenario, a group of participants of a certain reality show "Island", consisting of four guys and four girls, reach a deserted island, where lots of television cameras are hidden in various places. On the first day, something unexpected happens: the entire film crew dies in the explosion of the yacht; which fact the participants of the show understand as a signal for the beginning of the game, and rush to perform sophisticated tasks of the editors and even carry out SMS-votes. They are sure that millions of viewers are watching them, although in reality nobody does and nobody cares about them (more precisely, they are seen by the audience, but a different one, not that of the reality show, but the sitcom audience). Just like the participants of "Dom-2" they unconsciously begin to break up into pairs and "build relationships", although they were not asked to do so. They are accompanied by a local resident, and he alone knows the terrible truth, but he does not speak their language, and they do not understand him. Actually, "Dom-2" as well as some other TNT products are directly mentioned, and even mocked at, by the participants of the "Island" from the very beginning:

Igor Karev from Gazeta.Ru recommends "Island" to the fans of "Interns" and those who "have always dreamt of watching "Dom-2", but were too shy to do so." The success of the series provided a release of its second season, going to be followed by the third one, expected in 2018.[144]

Another sitcom, "Olga", is a traditional comedy story with a strong personality in the center and a touch of art house drama.[145] Its starring actress Yana Troyanova turned to be a real discovery for the 2016 Russian television season. The series set a new record of popularity, leaving behind the "Interns" and the "P. E. Teacher." According to "TNS Russia", with the target audience of TNT "All 14-44" the series "Olga" became the most popular among all the TV series shown in September 2016.[146] Its audience was twice bigger than the average daily audience of the TNT.[147]

Among the other novelties of the year one could name "The Bearded Guy. Understand and forgive ", which developed from the narrative line of "Nasha Russia's sketchbook, finalized in 2011, and Grigory Constantinople's four-series movies "A Drunken Firm" (a black comedy), with a cluster of popular actors: Mikhail Efremov, Elizaveta Boyarskaia, Anna Mikhalkova, Marat Basharov etc. The series "A Drunken Firm" received the award of the Association of Producers of Cinema and Television in the nomination for the Best TV Film / TV Series, and Mikhail Efremov was awarded as the Best Actor.

Since December 27, 2016 a new HD-version of the TV channel has begun its broadcast.[148]


In February 2017, there was started a comedy series called "Adaptation". The US CIA conducts a secret operation named "Rosilda", in order to gather all the possible information about the latest Russian technology for cheap gas production. CIA’s best agent Ashton Ivey gets introduced into the company Gazprom Dobycha YANAO in the city of Noyabrsk under the name of a Russian engineer Oleg Menshov. On the way to Noyabrsk, he gets acquainted with Marina and Valera, which greatly complicates his work. The film stars Leonid Bichevin, the authors of the project managed also to invite an American actor Peter Jacobson. While the series starts with an announcement that the plot is fully "imaginary", the authors state that the story is based on some real facts:[149]

The series "Adaptation" was well received by the audience and thus its second season has already been announces.

In April 2017, the TNT started "The Philological Faculty", another series directed by Fedor Stukov. This is an attempt to repeat the success of “Univer” and try to creatively reckon with the problem of the philological faculties of the country teaching mostly girls. The story takes place in a University group where three boys find themselves among a lot of girls.[150] Fyodor Stukov has been the director of the series, and a famous pop artist and humorist Efim Shifrin was invited to play the part of the teacher:[151][152]

Among other notable projects of the year are the second season of the sitcom "A policeman from the Rublevki avenue", "The civil marriage" etc.

A number of long-awaited sitcoms and movie series of 2017: "Phone DiCaprio" by Zhora Kryzhovnikov, "The Cultural Year" starring Fyodor Bondarchuk, "The Home Confinement" starring Pavel Derevyanko, "Polar-17" starring Mikhail Porechenkov and Alexander Bashirov, "The Mounted Police" starring Arthur Smolyaninov, "Big Cheese" starring Roman Popov, "The Light from Another World", etc. Also the TNT will premiere a rap musical "Bonus" by Valeriya Gai Germanika.[153]

There are such projects as "Bitva extrasensov", "Dances", "Bachelor", "Dom-2"; by Comedy Club Production: "HB", "Stand Up", "Comedy Woman", "Comedy Club", "Comedy Battle", "Improvisation", "Once in Russia", and others coming soon such as: "Love Is" and "An Open Microphone".[153]

Programming blocksEdit

TNT Russia shows Nickelodeon programs weekdays 7.00 am until 8.30 am and 12.30 am until 2.00 pm (MSK) and weekends 6.00 am 8.40 am (MSK).


Former programmingEdit


Awards of the TNT channel, as well as its projects, by 2017

TNT is awarded dozens of awards in the field of television design and promotion. Among the most important:


  • Award of the Association of Film and Television Producers
    • 2 awards to the series "Drunken Firm": "Best TV Film" and "Best Actor of a TV Film / Series" (Mikhail Efremov)
    • TV series "Olga": "Best Comedy Series" and "Best Screenplay"


  • TEFI 2016:
    • "Best television film / TV series" - "Infidelity"
    • "Best director of a television film / series" - Vadim Perelman (TV series "Infidelity")
    • "Best actress of a television film / series" - Elena Lyadova (TV series "Infidelity")
    • "Best TV serial comedy / sitcom" - the series "Interns"
  • Award of the Association of Film and Television Producers - 2 awards to the TV series "Infidelity": "The best TV mini-series" and "The best script"
  • PromaxBDA Global Excellence Awards:
    • Gold in the nomination "Brand Integration" - sponsor integration of the film "The Terminator"
    • Gold in the nomination "Art Direction and Design of the Promo Site of the TV Program" - a promo site for the TV series "Adulteries"
    • Silver in the nomination "Art Direction and Design of the Promo Site of the TV Program" - a promo site for the series "The Law of the Stone Jungle"
  • National Award of the Association of Communication Agencies of Russia - The best in the industry "Media, Advertising, Media, Publishing" (marketing campaigns of the series "Chernobyl: Zone of Exclusion" and the show "Dancing").
  • National Award of Business Communications - Gold. The best marketing campaign ("Chernobyl: Zone of Exclusion")
  • "Media Manager of Russia 2016" - Golden figurine "For the creation and effective management of the subholding of entertainment TV channels of Gazprom-Media Holding JSC" - to Artur Janibekyan.


  • Award of The Hollywood Reporter magazine - "Audience Choice Award" at the "Event of the Year" went to actor Alexander Petrov (film series "The Law of the Stone Jungle").
  • TEFI 2015 - "The best sitcom": the series "P. E. Teacher".
  • The "Complicity" award - reality show "Dom-2" was awarded the second place in the nomination "PR-propaganda" - for its contribution to attracting public attention to the problem of blood donation and for the originality in the approach to the topic of blood donation.


  • Award of the Association of Film and Television Producers - 2 awards to the TV series "P. E. Teacher": "Best Comedy Series" and "Best Screenplay".[154][155]
  • Promax - "For the best promo in a foreign language"
    • Gold - "Magic powder TNT" - a parody of advertising of washing powder, with the participation of three puppet raccoons.
    • Silver - a generic that advertises the column "Big Movie on TNT", in which the theme of selfie is played with the participation of popular movie characters: Darth Vader, Indiana Jones and Gollum.


  • Promax (London, November 9):
    • Bronze figurine in the nomination "For the best installation" for the announcement of the action movie "Transporter 3"
    • Bronze figurine in the nomination "For the best entertaining promo clip" for the video "Spring Awakening"
  • Promax (Los Angeles, July):
    • Nomination "Image Promotion" - the series "Interns" for the best promo campaign for the holiday or special event;
    • Nomination "Ethereal promotion" - the series "Interns" for the best promo campaign of the comedy program.
    • Nomination "Ethereal promotion" - video for the film series "Harry Potter" for the best promotional campaign for a special broadcast event.
    • Nomination "Internal marketing" - the video "People of TNT" for the best marketing video or presentation
    • Category "Print" - for the best invitation (invitation to the conference of advertisers of TNT, which was held in the Expocentre).


  • Promax (London) - gold in the category "Promotion" for the best sound


  • Promax UK (London, November 12) "Best installation" for the TNT-Comedy promo-video, completely built on rhythmic editing and sound of percussion instruments.
  • Promax / BDA (Los Angeles, June)[156]
    • Gold in the nomination "Original composition in promo". Promotional movie "TNT-Comedy", completely built on the sounds of drums.
    • Bronze in the nomination "Comedy Promo Campaign". A series of commercials "TNT-Comedy", announcing the film show-2009.
    • Bronze in the nomination "Promotion of a website". The clip of the "Our Russia" sketch.
  • Promax / BDA Design World Gold 2010
    • Gold in the nomination "Interactive: Flash animation of the website." The work of TNT-Design on the site of the comedy project "Nasha Russia".
    • Bronze in the nomination "Invitation". Invitation to the presentation "Nasha Russia".
    • Bronze in the nomination "Folded Piece". Invitation to the conference of advertisers.
    • Bronze in the nomination "Internet Communications". New Year's e-card TNT.


  • TNT channel became the owner of the prize "For contribution to the development of social projects", taking first place in the nomination "Socially responsible media: for the active placement of social advertising on the air".


  • In January 2008, TNT was named the best "TV channel of the year" according to the version of "Russian Entertainment Awards" - the annual national award in the field of entertainment industry.
  • At the III International contest of Russian-language advertising AdVison Awards, TNT channel received a special prize for the best series of advertisements prepared for the Year of the Family.


  • In 2007, at the 20th Anniversary of the Promax / BDA Awards, TNT channel received a record number of figurines among Russian TV channels, becoming the owner of 13 awards in the field of Internet advertising, souvenirs and air design. Of the three gold awards ceremony, two were marked by the design work of TNT: the design of Internet banners and New Year greeting cards. Gold for the promotion was awarded a souvenir Christmas production channel. In one of the most prestigious nominations of the ceremony "Design of the program" of the jury, the design of the show "Office" was marked.


  • In 2006 - Gold Promax / BDA European Awards - 2006 and Promax / BDA World Design Awards - 9 awards, three of which were gold.[157]


  • November 2005 - gold on the Promax UK in London.


TEFI 1999:


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External linksEdit