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Search Warrant Reveals Alec Baldwin Shooting Victim’s Last Moments

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OPINION: This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion


New details from the movie set of “Rust” regarding the accidental shooting death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins from a bullet fired by a prop gun wielded by actor Alec Baldwin have emerged.

A search warrant obtained by the Los Angeles Times said that Baldwin, a co-producer of the film, and the crew were setting up for a shot that required the actor to point his weapon straight at the camera. But because of a shadow being cast over the set that was creeping into the shot, the camera was adjusted to a different angle.

And when Baldwin was explaining to the crew how he planned to draw his revolver prop gun from his holster and where his arm should be to get the best angle, the gun went off.

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Fox News added:

Director Joel Souza explained that he heard “what sounded like a whip and then a loud pop,” and noticed Hutchins, who he was standing behind at the time, grab her midsection as she stumbled backward. She “was assisted to the ground” by other crew members and camera operator Reid Russell recalls Hutchins saying she could not feel her legs.

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Hutchins was later airlifted to the hospital where she was eventually pronounced dead. Souza, who was also injured in the incident, has since been released from the hospital.

Souza said three people were handling the gun for the scene. Armorer Hanna Gutierrez Reed reportedly handled three prop guns left on a cart outside the structure they were shooting in due to coronavirus restrictions. Assistant director Dave Halls handed one of those guns to Baldwin. According to a Santa Fe court, Halls announced that it was a “cold gun” before giving it to the actor, lingo meaning that the firearm was unloaded.

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The warrant notes that Souza told sheriff’s deputies that the crew had prepared the scene before lunch and that they all ate away from the location. He said he was not sure if the prop gun was checked again before it was given to Baldwin as a “cold gun” — that is, one that was not loaded with live rounds.

“The safety of our cast and crew is the top priority of Rust Productions and everyone associated with the company,” Rust Movie Productions said in a statement to several media outlets. “Though we were not made aware of any official complaints concerning weapon or prop safety on set, we will be conducting an internal review of our procedures while production is shut down.

“We will continue to cooperate with the Santa Fe authorities in their investigation and offer mental health services to the cast and crew during this tragic time,” the statement continued.

A member of the crew is now predicting that the film will not be finished.

“None of us expect this movie to be finished. Ever,” an unnamed worker told The Sun. “We know this is the end of the road for ‘Rust ‘sadly.”

“Maybe way down the line it will get picked up again but right now, there’s no way it’s going to continue getting made. If by a miracle it ever is though, the movie will absolutely be dedicated to Halyna,” the staffer said.

“Not only is our director still fighting for his life, but there will be lawsuits I’m sure and a lot of other factors that will prevent this movie from ever being finished,” the worker said.

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The film was low-budget by Hollywood standards — just $7 million.

The last time an actor was accidentally shot and killed on set was Brandon Lee, son of the legendary martial artist Bruce Lee. That film, “The Crow,” in 1993, wound up being completed and released to much success.

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