Alec Baldwin was told by assistant director that gun in fatal shooting had no real bullets, officials say

15:04   23 October, 2021

Alec Baldwin was told a gun being used as a prop was safe before he fired it on the set of “Rust,” killing the film’s cinematographer and wounding its director, law enforcement officials said, New York Times reported.

On a ranch in northern New Mexico, Baldwin was filming a new movie on Thursday afternoon when his character, an outlaw, needed a gun.

An assistant director grabbed one of three prop guns that the film’s armorer had set up outside on a gray cart, handed it to Baldwin, and, according to an affidavit signed by Detective Joel Cano of the Santa Fe County sheriff’s office, yelled “Cold Gun!”—which was supposed to indicate that the gun did not have any live rounds in it.

When Baldwin fired the gun, law enforcement officials said, it struck and killed the film’s cinematographer and wounded its director—and raised new questions about firearms safety on film sets.

The assistant director “did not know live rounds were in the prop-gun” when he gave it to Baldwin, according to the affidavit, which was made as part of a search warrant application.

Halyna Hutchins, 42, the film’s director of photography, was struck in the chest and flown to the University of New Mexico Hospital in Albuquerque, where she died, officials said. Joel Souza, 48, the film’s director, was shot in the shoulder area and wounded; he was taken to Christus St. Vincent Regional Medical Center in Santa Fe and later released.

The movie set—on Bonanza Creek Ranch in Santa Fe County—became the scene of a real killing, and a real investigation.

Juan Rios, a spokesman for the Santa Fe County sheriff’s office, said on Thursday night that the sheriff’s office had not filed charges against anyone in connection with the shooting.