Taking action. The family of Halyna Hutchins, who died in the shooting on the set of Rust, has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Alec Baldwin and other individuals involved in the movie’s production, Us Weekly can confirm.
According to court documents obtained by Us, the suit was filed on Tuesday, February 15, in New Mexico. “Mr. Baldwin and others were responsible and are responsible for safety on the job site,” attorney Brian Panish said in a press conference on Tuesday, adding that “reckless conduct and cost-cutting measures” led to the cinematographer’s death.
Hutchins, 42, was killed in October 2021 when the 30 Rock alum, 63, was holding a prop gun with a live round that was discharged, also injuring director Joel Souza. Baldwin, who was told the weapon was “cold” (meaning unloaded), later claimed that he did not pull the trigger.
The lawsuit was filed on behalf of Hutchins’ surviving family members: her husband, Matthew Hutchins, and their son Andros, 9.
The family’s lawyers claimed that the Oscar nominee and other crew members “failed to perform industry standard safety checks” for the use of guns on set and accused the production of “cutting corners” on safety measures.
“We’re used to people coming in from out of town to play cowboy who don’t know how to use guns,” attorney Randi McGinn said during the press conference on Tuesday. “You don’t hand somebody a gun until you give them safety training. … No one should ever die with a real gun on a make-believe movie set.”
Two months after the incident, Baldwin opened up about the shooting during an in-depth interview with ABC News. “I didn’t pull the trigger,” he said in December 2021. “I would never point a gun at anyone and pull the trigger at them. Never. I have no idea [how a bullet got in there]. Someone put a live bullet in a gun. A bullet that wasn’t even supposed to be on the property.”
The New York native added that he didn’t feel guilty about the tragedy, saying, “I might have killed myself if I felt that I was responsible. I don’t say that lightly.”
Later that month, the Beetlejuice actor shared a two-page letter via Instagram that was written by the Rust crew in defense of the film’s production. “The descriptions of Rust as a chaotic, dangerous, and exploitative workplace are false and distract from what matters the most: the memory of Halyna Hutchins, and the need to find modern alternatives to outdated industry firearm and safety practices,” the letter read.
Baldwin also denied a report that he asked for a larger prop weapon while filming. “This, in fact is a lie,” he tweeted in December 2021. “The choices regarding any props by me for the film RUST were made weeks before production began. To suggest that any changes were made ‘before fatal shooting’ is false.”