Saturday, January 15, 2022

Alec Baldwin and Producers Sued After Shooting Accident


The script supervisor on the set of ‘Rust’ where Alec Baldwin accidentally shot cinematographer Halyna Hutchins is suing the actor and other crew members after the shooting accident. The other crew members named are armorer Hannah Gutierrez Reed and first assistant director Dave Halls.

Also named are the following producers and executive producers:

  • Ryan Donnel Smith
  • Allen Cheney
  • Nathan Klingher
  • Ryan Winterstern
  • Matt DelPiano
  • Anjul Nigam
  • Emily Salveson
  • Jennifer Lamb
  • Chris M.B. Sharp. 

The complainant, Mamie Mitchell, was a friend of Hutchins. She alleges that the parties involved were negligent, and that the accident caused severe emotional and physical distress. She further alleges that the bullet narrowly missed her.

Mitchell’s suit is the second suit filed pertaining to this accident. Previously, the film’s gaffer, Serge Svetnoy, also filed a separate claim. He alleged that he was in close proximity to Baldwin when the incident took place.  

Mamie Mitchell 2
Mamie Mitchell, script supervisor on the film “Rust”, filed a lawsuit against Baldwin and the crew members.

Details on the Shooting Accident and Alec Baldwin’s Involvement

The incident took place on the 21st of October 2021. Baldwin pulled a prop gun out of a holster after crew members shouted “cold gun” on set. The term “cold gun” indicated that the gun was without ammunition. The filmmaking team had not retreated to the video village at the time to watch the filming from a distance. 

Nothing happened when Baldwin removed the gun from its holster the first time. However, when he did so a second time, the bullet flew towards Hutchins, the B-camera operator, and ‘Rust’ director Joel Souza. The three had gathered around the monitor.

The bullet penetrated Hutchins near her shoulder and then hit Souza. 

“I heard someone moaning and I turned around and my director was falling backward and holding his upper body and I turned around toward Alec and saw Halyna going down to the left of me,” Mitchell said. 

Crew members attempted to stop the bleeding by applying pressure to her wound. Halyna Hutchins and Joel Souza were both taken to receive medical attention. The former passed away at the University of New Mexico Hospital in Albuquerque. Souza, on the other hand, received treatment at Christus St Vincent Regional Medical Center. He left the hospital on the 22nd of October.

Mamie Mitchell and lawyer 3
Mamie Mitchell pictured next to her attorney.

Legal Repercussions After the Shooting Accident

In the suit, it was stated: “Plaintiff was terrified and feared for her life. The gunshot caused Plaintiff to experience pain in her ears and head and, shortly thereafter, Plaintiff began to hear loud ringing in her ears. Soon after, Plaintiff witnessed the horror of what had occurred.”

Three crew members present that day revealed that the several safety issues on set deeply concerned them. 

Before this incident, Baldwin’s stunt double had accidentally fired two rounds. These accidental discharges sparked concern amongst the crew members. 

“There should have been an investigation into what happened. [And] there were no safety meetings. There was no assurance that it wouldn’t happen again. All they wanted to do was rush, rush, rush,” one of the crew members said.

The Associated Press reported after the incident that an assistant director had given Baldwin the loaded weapon. This assistant director did not know that there were live rounds loaded into the prop gun

Rust Movie Productions declared in a statement that they will be conducting an internal review of their procedures.  

Baldwin, on the other hand, spoke about the matter on social media. “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.”

Many are concerned about gun safety in movie sets. Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson, for instance, has pledged to stop using real guns on production sets and will instead use rubber guns.  

As of yet, nobody has pressed criminal charges against the parties involved. As of now, the civil suits’ outcome remains to be seen. 

Cynthia Lorraine
Cynthia is a staff writer at Peres Daily. An avid lover of writing and reporting on the truth, she dedicates her career to telling stories about people and the world as a whole. Cynthia is currently working as a full-time Staff Writer at Peres Daily News and Israel Now News - to deliver true stories and no less.

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