Accident On Set with Alec Baldwin Kills One, Injures Another

Alec Baldwin fired what may have been a fully functional firearm on the set of the movie “Rust,” killing one and injuring another. (Photo: Tessa Mentus/Twitter)

Actor Alec Baldwin pulled the trigger on a prop pistol while shooting a scene for the film “Rust” killing cinematographer Halnya Hutchins and injuring director Joel Souza, reports the Santa Fe Sheriff’s Department.

It’s not clear if the death is a result of mishandling firearms, issuing the wrong prop or a catastrophic malfunction of the prop used for the scene. Investigation is ongoing and so far no one is facing charges, however, rumors suggest the actor was issued a fully functional and loaded firearm for the scene.

Emergency responders airlifted Hutchins from the shooting location to the University of New Mexico Hospital, where she was pronounced dead by hospital staff. Souza took an ambulance to Christus St. Vincent Regional Medical Center and has been treated and released.

“The sheriff’s office confirms that two individuals were shot on the set of Rust,” said the Santa Fe Sheriff’s Department in an early statement. “Halyna Hutchins, 42, director of photography and Joel Souza, 48, director, were shot when a prop firearm was discharged by Alec Baldwin, 68, producer and actor.”

“This investigation remains open and active,” they said. “No charges have been filed in regard to this incident. Witnesses continue to be interviewed by detectives.”

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According to IATSE Local 44 the cause of the accident was the use of a real revolver loaded with a live cartridge. The association was not involved with the film, instead, local New Mexican crew were on staff. They charge that Baldwin fired the real gun at Hutchins with the bullet passing through her and injuring Souza.

The International Cinematographers Guild issued a statement following the incident. “The details are unclear at this moment, but we are working to learn more, and we support a full investigation into this tragic event. This is a terrible loss, and we mourn the passing of a member of our Guild’s family.”

Sources close to the production report that Baldwin did not know he was given a working, loaded firearm. “In all my years, I’ve never been handed a hot gun,” he is said to have said, with “hot gun” meaning functional firearm and not a prop, loaded with either blanks or other propellant cartridges.

“Rust” as a production wasn’t a big budget deal, a Western crime action drama. Reports indicate that there was only one prop manager, one medic and two stuntmen. They also say all production is halted and the movie won’t be finished, because of inevitable legal problems following the death of a crewmember, due to negligence or otherwise.

“Rust” was a Western movie set in Kansas in the 1880s. Baldwin played a Hartland Rust, a grandfather and outlaw with a 13-year-old grandson accused of an accidental killing.

Even if the rumor that Baldwin was issued a working firearm are wrong, it’s still possible for a blank-firing prop to kill and injure people. A blank at close range can itself be fatal, and if the barrel or chamber is obstructed and loaded with a blank, the obstruction can be fired like any bullet.

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About the author: Max Slowik is a writer with over a dozen years of experience and is a lifelong shooter. He has unwavering support for the Second Amendment and the human right to self-defense. Like Thomas Paine, he’s a journalist by profession and a propagandist by inclination.

{ 40 comments… add one }
  • Gerald Smith November 2, 2021, 7:14 pm

    What a stupid Dildo he is. He should be sent to prison and enjoy big Bubba the fudge packer.

  • Jerry Lee October 29, 2021, 1:29 pm

    Semantics rule. “Prop” has a 600 year history of “property belonging to the theatrical company”. Classically, and contemporarily, a prop gun is an actual firearm, frequently fully functional, and blanks have been used in them for over 100 years, with some few being converted to only fire blanks, or even propane. Commonly, in my observation, a prop gun could be a real gun, a modified-to-blanks-only “blank gun” (called a blank gun), a blanks-only gun made variously from steel to potmetal and called a “blank gun”, and, the “dummy gun”, made of metal and/or plastic or even all-rubber for droppng, throwing, or pistol-whipping (tom mix had a pair, “fallng on a real one hurts”), which is often thought of when “prop gun” comes up. These are all prop guns. On that filming location, a few days earlier, a prop gun went off twice while somebody was just holding it, and aleck’s gun also accidentally misfired. Semantics, again. Misfire means it DIDENT go-off when you pulled the trigger; aleck performed a foolish action, an accident if you must but not a misfire. CYA could mean Check Your Arms, too. Aleck baldwin’s pietta, and teddy kennedy’s buick, have both killed more people than i have ever aimed my guns at, on or off duty. Be Safe!

  • DELCO October 27, 2021, 2:07 pm

    A.B is and has earned many times over a reputation for being an arrogant punk. That said it’s interesting how the left attacks responsible Gun owners every day. But we now know that the people on the set who all are also either left wing gun haters or just sheep who follow the others around them, were plinking and shooting Guns on their lunch break. They attack Guns and Gun owners but are out shooting and doing exactly the same hobby /sport that they publicly attack. Hypocrisy ! If A.B would have had an experienced ( possibly even a Republican) on the set , this happening would have been less of a possibility. That said this young lady is gone, and people need to be held responsible. I hope her family stays strong and doesn’t get wrapped up into a media circus. As for A.B it was well said above that this punk makes millions playing with Guns, while attacking all Gun owners at every turn. Everyone knows you never point a weapon at anything you are not willing to destroy. Unless that Gun is obviously plastic or not real, ya don’t point a Gun period.

  • mark mullins October 27, 2021, 12:50 am

    There’s some comments here and in a few other forums and concerning where he pointed the gun. As I understand it they were doing a “victim point of view” shot..meaning the camera looking right down the bore. Should be plenty safe in the film industry and they rarely ever have an incident like this. But if there were a live round in there then our safety rules apply. just so ya’ll know, I hate the guy too and he’s a jackass of the first order…that being said it sucks he killed someone and as much of a jackass that he is, I bet he really is distraught and remorseful. The rest of us could at least show some humanity about the whole thing and not sound like a bunch of leftists burning shit down last year. Let’s just wait on the investigation to play out and see what happens. immediate guilty verdicts is what the other side does. Not us.

    • DavidInCO October 27, 2021, 2:26 pm

      Agreed. I wouldn’t wish what happened on anyone. I will add, however, that it is the left’s religious hatred of firearms (and apparent hypocrisy when it comes to making movies with them) that has them avoid even learning a basic level of firearms safety. And that basic understanding, those 4 rules, would have completely prevented this tragedy. That poor woman he shot was a mother. Absolutely tragic.

  • Randy October 26, 2021, 10:00 am

    Yah, you can bet your ass i have thoughts for that p.o.s.
    My first thoughts of him go straight back to SNL.
    But besides that, If that f’n hypocrite had any balls he’d face HIS actions and HIS lack of judgement and HIS lack of professionalism and accept responsibility. As we all know,that’ll be a cold day in hell.

  • Todd October 26, 2021, 12:34 am

    Typical Hollyweird media hypocrisy- ‘poor alec’ is heartbroken & distraught……was ‘visibly upset’….’shaking’. Awww. Let’s all feel sorry for him. HE SHOT & KILLED SOMEONE. Allegedly he was ‘practicing’….but it was right after lunch & NO CAMERAS were rolling- so how does a camera operator get shot???

  • Max Powers October 25, 2021, 11:59 pm

    Dear friends,

    You’ve taken time to listen to the news on this, and you’ve commented here on one of my favorite forums. But, you’re so much smarter than that. Please, dig deeper.

    Who was she?
    Who is he?
    Who is he, really?
    Is there film? If so, where is it, if not, why not? It’s a movie set, right?
    The past holds insight to the future.
    “Accidents” happen, but, in this profession not very often. That industry is heavily regulated, especially their armory . . . after all, home base for them is in what State?
    Use discernment! I’d enjoy hearing what you find!

  • Shanz October 25, 2021, 9:17 pm

    What a dumb ass. The hypocrisy of the left. Preaching gun control but not safety. Poor lady.

  • Dilligaf October 25, 2021, 8:54 pm

    alec baldwin has killed more people than my entire firearm collection has in the past 20 years

  • StevO October 25, 2021, 3:32 pm

    Couldn’t happen to a nicer guy.He hates the second amendment but makes millions making movies with gun
    violence. Hope he ends up in the cell with Big Bert and his happy Joy Stick

  • Bob October 25, 2021, 3:15 pm

    This liberal buffoon killed this lady and should stand trial. He is a huge anti-gun proponent unless of course he can make some money off of using a gun in a movie and killing a few people. He is the one solely responsible for this poor lady’s death as he chose to aim the gun and discharge it regardless of who actually loaded it and whatever they told him. Unfortunately, California has not used the death penalty in 15 years and that would be a fitting penalty for this ahole! Hopefully at least 15 years for this douche bag which in reality could be a life sentence at his age. Somehow that won’t happen as the hollyweirdos will rally around their hero and the charges will be issued against the dude who handed him the loaded gun. Whatever the outcome I wish him nothing but the worst going forward.

    • Blue Dog (he/him) October 25, 2021, 4:02 pm

      Wouldn’t the trial be in New Mexico, not California? I realise that it can be difficult to take New Mexico seriously as a legal entity but they are a real state.

      • David October 25, 2021, 11:40 pm

        It’s nice that you wax poetic with the intricacies of New Mexico law Blue dog but let’s stick to the fact that your gun law opinions and one more of your leftist Hollywood mouth pieces were just shown there ass for another go round.

      • paul I'll call you what I want/1st Amendment October 26, 2021, 3:38 pm

        Hey blue dog why don’t you take your british commonwealth crap and solve the problems in your own country! We don’t need your help here!!!

  • David October 25, 2021, 3:09 pm

    Anyone catch the abounding hypocrisy of “extreme gun hating” Alec that tells everyone what our 2a rights should be but doesn’t have one problem with making money using whatever firearm he chooses?

  • Ross Campbell October 25, 2021, 2:56 pm

    I.hope I’m wrong,but,was t he a gun hater.typical fake Hollywood and now karma.

  • Paul October 25, 2021, 2:44 pm

    I will look forward to seeing the movie, the special effects will be very realistic I figure.
    And as W stated, a “Prop” gun should not be an actual firearm capable of firing a live round, but as I have noticed in the past year or so, Stupid is everywhere!

  • Russ October 25, 2021, 2:23 pm

    No matter who this liberal buffoon Baldwin tries to blame he is ultimately responsible for his actions. He took a firearm, pointed it at someone and then fired. Karma is a biotch Alec.

  • Dennis January October 25, 2021, 1:52 pm

    Alec Baldwin should be held accountable, Period! I don’t care about his political views, he pointed a loaded pistol at another human being and pulled the trigger. It only takes 10 seconds or less to make sure a handgun is not loaded. ACCOUNTABLE

  • W October 25, 2021, 1:36 pm

    Baldwin has a liability here. No matter what anyone told him, he apparently did not conduct a proper inspection of the weapon and rounds. The word “prop” should not be used. If it were a “prop” it would not be a functioning firearm. A “prop” is a look-alike but does not function as to discharge a live round. Obviously we do not have all the details and some of my information may not be accurate but this should never happen on a movie set. There should never be a live round or firearm on a set with “props”.

  • LJ October 25, 2021, 1:28 pm

    Based on what I just saw on the news the “armorer specialist and prop-master” was a woman that know absolutely NOTHING about firearms and is the person that handed Baldwin the pistol declaring it ‘cold’. Heads are – and should – roll over this. How in the world did this production company allow such a unqualified person to manage such an important job. This should have never happened again after the death of Brandon Lee. There is NO excuse for having live ammo on set. Where did it come from? Right before she handed that firearm to the actor the cylinder should have been re-checked for the 15th time, even putting her finger on each hole verifying it empty. That was her job – period.

    I agree with others about Baldwin being an abusive, pompous ass, but being the anti-gun zealot he is he probably has no idea how to verify an SAA revolver is unloaded to begin with. That’s why they pay someone to do it for him. Apparently it was a period correct .45 LC or 44.40 and that big ‘ol slow moving slug plowed right through her and into the person standing behind her.

    I can only imagine the grief Baldwin is going through over this. So don’t beat him up too bad folks, have a little compassion.

    Thoughts and prayers for all involved in this senseless tragedy.

    • Randy October 26, 2021, 9:54 am

      Yah, you can bet your ass i have thoughts for that p.o.s.
      My first thoughts of him to straight back to SNL.
      But besides that, If that f’n hypocrite had any balls he’d face HIS actions and HIS lack of judgement and HIS lack of professionalism and accept responsibility. As we all know,that’ll be a cold day in hell.

  • Big Al 45 October 25, 2021, 1:02 pm

    Total violation of the first two rules of firearm safety.
    Baldwin assumed the gun was unloaded, rather than checking himself.
    And he pointed the gun at someone, forgetting or not knowing that one never points a gun at something or someone they do not wish to destroy.
    Had Baldwin been properly trained, he would have immediately found that the gun was loaded, and this tragedy would NOT have come about.
    Why Hollywood doesn’t insist on proper firearms training is evident, and that poor woman paid for Hollywood’s biases with her life.
    A tragedy yes, but also so very, very stupid.

  • larry October 25, 2021, 12:57 pm

    If I were an actor handling a firearm on set, I would not take anyone’s word for anything. I would inspect my weapon with a bore light, check the chamber, and check every round in every magazine I was handed.

  • themanwithnoname October 25, 2021, 12:42 pm

    It wasn’t an accident. It was a hit.

    It was not a prop gun.

    They were not filming any scenes.

    It was a real gun. It was pointed at the victim. The trigger was pulled.

    GUILTY

  • Dr Motown October 25, 2021, 12:39 pm

    The movie industry needs to change their terminology. Any firearm that goes “bang” is technically “hot,” whether it’s loaded with blanks or live rounds. Even “blanks” can be lethal if they shoot out a wad, broken crimp or any debris that may be in the barrel from previous use. The only “cold” firearm is one that’s empty or loaded with dummy rounds.

  • Michael A Keim October 25, 2021, 12:02 pm

    CHECK THE CHAMBER! This should have been done by everyone who handled the gun.

  • Boz October 25, 2021, 11:53 am

    “accident”……………LOL

  • Eric October 25, 2021, 11:37 am

    Why the hell did he point it at someone and pull the trigger?

  • Michael Boyd October 25, 2021, 11:24 am

    Karma’s a b*tch, Alec!

    • LJ October 25, 2021, 1:34 pm

      I’m not an Alec Baldwin fan, but how could you wish this kind of ‘karma’ as you call it on anyone?

      • Rob October 25, 2021, 3:43 pm

        @LJ, easlily, dems like Alec are trash and deserve all the negativity towards them. All the hatred they’ve spewed for the past 5 years towards Pres. Trump and his supporters. Hang them all!

    • Blue Dog (he/him) October 25, 2021, 4:08 pm

      LJ is right. Don’t take the opportunity of this tragedy to show the world what a terrible person you are. A lady died, needlessly and senselessly in a tragic accident, and you are crowing about karma?

      And, you know, that’s not really how karma works. If you have to pay the comeuppance in the same lifetime, it is not karma. Karma is a bill paid between lifetimes, the ultimate goal of which is the destruction of self, the same as yoga.

  • whiteweed October 25, 2021, 10:59 am

    If she wasn’t acting in the movie why was he firing a gun at her????

    • LJ October 25, 2021, 1:37 pm

      Apparently he was practicing aiming at the camera for a third person point of view shot. She was behind the camera when he pulled the trigger.

  • Bob October 25, 2021, 10:35 am

    Lots of sympathy felt for the victims and families but not one drop for anti gun hypocrite Alec who makes millions shooting people on the big screen!

  • paul I'll call you what I want/1st Amendment October 24, 2021, 10:40 am

    So much wrong with this….
    1 A senseless tragedy that never should have happened!
    2 Hollywood will dictate who and what will be charged, If it was one of us lowly common folk it would be murder.
    3 With Baldwin’s aggressive past why was he allowed to even handle a gun?
    4 We seem to have an over abundance of experts who are clueless in this country
    5 No common sense was used for gun safety.
    6 And lastly what the hell is up with “prop” being used to describe the gun wtf…….

    • Carl October 27, 2021, 4:03 pm

      “Prop” just means property of. Doesn’t mean it’s not a real gun.

  • SeppW October 23, 2021, 8:43 am

    Tragic accident. However, Baldwin bears some responsibility. He should have checked the cartridge’s or had the prop guy or armorer double check before shooting the scene, while standing there and looking. I’m interested to see who is going to defend this. Every responsible person handling a firearm, real or replica, must apply handling and safety rules. It’s common sense stuff, this accident was preventable.

    The liberal media is in full swing damage control. Hollywood, and Baldwin for that matter, are big time liberals and anti-Constitution, anti-2A, anti-freedom and everything else liberal despise about this country..

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