Alec Baldwin breaks silence on film set shooting

3 months ago 18

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1 min ago

Alec Baldwin makes first statement on New Mexico shooting

From CNN’s Chloe Melas, Sandra Gonzalez and Andy Rose

Alec Baldwin has made his first public statement since a fatal shooting on the set of his new film on Thursday.

"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," Baldwin tweeted on Friday. "I'm fully cooperating with the police investigation to address how this tragedy occurred and I am in touch with her husband, offering my support to him and his family. My heart is broken for her husband, their son, and all who knew and loved Halyna."

The actor was in New Mexico filming his western film "Rust," which he's starring in and producing. He discharged a prop firearm on the set, which resulted in the death of Halyna Hutchins, 42, the film's director of photography. 

The film’s director Joel Souza, 48, was also injured in the incident.

The incident happened at about 1:50 p.m. local time Thursday, investigators said. The Santa Fe County Sheriff's Office said the investigation "remains open and active" and no charges have been filed."

According to investigators, it appears that the scene being filmed involved the use of a prop firearm when it was discharged, a statement from law enforcement said. "Detectives are investigating how and what type of projectile was discharged."

This type of incident has happened before on sets. While filming the movie "The Crow" in 1993, actor Brandon Lee, the son of Bruce Lee, was killed when struck by a bullet from a gun that was supposed to have just blanks, but had a bullet lodged in the barrel.

Even blanks can be deadly if fired at very close range. In 1984, actor John-Erik Hexum was playing around with a gun on the set of "Cover Up: Golden Opportunity" and died after putting the gun to his head and pulling the trigger.

2 hr 11 min ago

Halyna Hutchins "was really making a name for herself as a cinematographer," journalist says

Halyna Hutchins attends the SAGindie Sundance Filmmakers Reception in Park City, Utah, in 2019.Halyna Hutchins attends the SAGindie Sundance Filmmakers Reception in Park City, Utah, in 2019. (Fred Hayes/Getty Images)

A crew member, who died after actor Alec Baldwin discharged a prop firearm on the set of the movie "Rust" in New Mexico on Thursday, was identified as director of photography Halyna Hutchins.

The 42-year-old "was just in love with movies and movie-making," said filmmaker and journalist Jim Hemphill, who profiled Hutchins in 2019 as part of a feature on rising cinematographers.

"She grew up on a Soviet military base where there wasn't much to do but watch movies. So she fell in love with movies at a young age, came over here, was really making a name for herself as a cinematographer of genre movies. She was known for action films and horror films. It is just a devastating loss, I think, to everybody in the cinematography community," Hemphill told CNN.

Hutchins studied journalism and worked on documentaries in the United Kingdom before she went into filmmaking, he added.

"That led her to come over here to the US to work in a film industry where she kind of brought that eye that she had from documentaries and nonfiction filmmaking to action movies and horror movies. They had this sort of immediacy and realism as well as this eye for beauty that she had and it was a really unique look," Hemphill said Friday. "It was really announcing her as somebody to watch."

1 hr 20 min ago

A prop master explains how a prop gun can be dangerous

A film crew member died and another was injured after actor Alec Baldwin discharged a prop firearm on the set of the movie "Rust" in New Mexico on Thursday, authorities said.

But how can a prop gun kill someone?

"Prop weapons do have a dangerous factor to them even though they're a lot safer than using a live firearm on set," says Joseph Fisher, a prop master who works on movie sets and has handled weapons in the military and with the NYPD. "Typical prop load will be about 25 to 50% of the gunpowder in an actual projectile load that would be used in a regular weapon."

Even though there is no actual physical projectile mounted on the cartridge, there will be gas, heat and air coming out of the weapon since there is gunpowder load present, "and those can cause physical injury within 25 to 50 feet, depending on the load," Fisher added.

Fisher said those on set "take extreme caution with any kind of weapons, whether they be prop guns, blank guns, and anything in between. 

"Typically, we will do a safety brief with the cast and crew. We'll introduce the weapon to the cast and crew, we'll let them examine it, we'll explain the safety precautions that go with each type of prop weapon," he told CNN.

In a scene involving prop guns, "we do safety distances, we try to keep the actors slightly misaligned with the weapon, so that if the person firing the weapon is firing straight this way, the other actor in frame is just slightly off," Fisher explained.

Read more about prop guns and how they can be deadly here.

2 hr 58 min ago

This isn't the first time someone was killed on a movie set with a prop gun

From CNN's Sandra Gonzalez

A film crew member died and another was injured after actor Alec Baldwin discharged a prop firearm on the set of the movie "Rust," according to a law enforcement statement provided to CNN.

This is not the first time people have been killed by what were supposed to be harmless guns on a movie set.

While filming the movie "The Crow" in 1993, actor Brandon Lee, the son of Bruce Lee, was killed when struck by a bullet from a gun that was supposed to have just blanks, but had a bullet lodged in the barrel.

Even blanks can be deadly if fired at very close range. In 1984, actor John-Eric Hexum was playing around with a gun on the set of "Cover Up: Golden Opportunity" and died after putting the gun to his head and pulling the trigger.

"They all contain a charge, a powder that creates the noise and the explosive, the visual blast, and usually it's some kind of wire or something that explodes out of the weapon when it's fired," said Daniel Oates, the former police chief of Miami Beach and Aurora, Colorado.

"These weapons can be very, very dangerous," Oates said on CNN's "New Day" Friday

2 hr 19 min ago

Family of "The Crow" actor Brandon Lee, who died in 1993 prop gun shooting, offers condolences

From CNN’s Stephanie Elam

Brandon Lee died age 28 in 1993, while filming 'The Crow.'Brandon Lee died age 28 in 1993, while filming 'The Crow.' (Pressman/Most/Kobal/Shutterstock)

The family of Brandon Lee has tweeted a statement in the wake of yesterday’s incident on a New Mexico film set that claimed the life of a director of photography and injured the film’s director.

“Our hearts go out to the family of Halyna Hutchins and to Joel Souza and all involved in the incident on “Rust”. No one should ever be killed by a gun on a film set. Period,” the tweet posted to Brandon Bruce Lee’s verified account, run by the late actor’s sister, Shannon Lee, said.

Brandon Lee died after an incident involving a prop gun on the set of the movie “The Crow” in 1993. 

2 hr 30 min ago

"Rust" crew member dead after shooting incident involving Alec Baldwin

From CNN's Sandra Gonzalez

A distraught Alec Baldwin speaks on the phone in the parking lot outside the Santa Fe County sheriff's offices after being questioned Thursday about a shooting on a local movie set.A distraught Alec Baldwin speaks on the phone in the parking lot outside the Santa Fe County sheriff's offices after being questioned Thursday about a shooting on a local movie set. (Jim Weber/The New Mexican)

A female crew member has died and another injured following an accident involving a prop firearm on the New Mexico set of the film "Rust," according to a law enforcement statement provided to CNN.

According to the Santa Fe County Sherrif's Office, the prop firearm was discharged by actor and producer Alec Baldwin, 68.

The female victim was identified as director of photography Halyna Hutchins, 42, according to investigators. She was transported to the hospital via helicopter and pronounced dead by medical personnel at University of New Mexico Hospital.

The other victim, 48-year-old director Joel Souza, was transported to Christus St. Vincent's Hospital by ambulance for care. Details on his condition were not released.

"According to investigators it appears that the scene being filmed involved the use of a prop firearm when it was discharged," a statement from authorities said. 

"Detectives are investigating how and what type of projectile was discharged."

Police said the incident happened Thursday at approximately 1:50 p.m. local time.

"Rust," from director Joel Souza, is a western film set in the 1880s that stars Baldwin, Travis Fimmel and Jensen Ackles.

The sheriff's office said the investigation "remains open and active" and no charges have been filed.

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