This is so sad.
On Thursday, veteran actor and producer Alec Baldwin was on the set of a new film being shot in Santa Fe, New Mexico titled Rust when he fired a prop gun that killed 42-year-old Halyna Hutchins, the film’s director of photography, and injured 48-year-old director Joel Souza. This kind of tragedy hasn’t made headlines like it is now since the same kind of incident killed Brandon Lee, son of iconic martial artist Bruce Lee, on the set of The Crow in 1993.
According to the New York Post, Baldwin was heard after the shooting asking members of the film staff repeatedly how he could have been given a “hot gun” to use.
“In all my years, I’ve never been handed a hot gun,” Baldwin kept saying, according to what eyewitnesses told Showbiz 411.
Hollywood weapons expert Larry Zanoff told NBC News that he didn’t exactly know how this tragedy could have happened, but he did say that while prop guns are typically filled with blank cartridges, smoke and burning embers can get propelled out of the gun when it’s fired.
“There should be nothing in front of it when filming is occurring with firearms,” Zanoff said, adding that there should be a minimum safety distance of 20 feet in front of the muzzle and that prop guns should also be inspected before and after each scene.
“We have a series of guidelines in the industry that govern the use of blank firearms and ammunition on set,” he said. “So my question is, of course, firstly, was that protocol followed?”
On Friday, Baldwin released his first statement on the shooting since it happened.
“There are no words to convey my shock and sadness regarding the tragic accident that took the life of Halyna Hutchins, a wife, mother and deeply admired colleague of ours,” he tweeted. “I’m fully cooperating with the police investigation to address how this tragedy occurred.”
“I am in touch with her husband, offering my support to him and his family,” Baldwin continued. “My heart is broken for her husband, their son, and all who knew and loved Halyna.”
No arrests have been made regarding the incident, but the Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office said the investigation is still ongoing.
Our hearts go out to the victims of this senseless tragedy and their families.