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Director of photography killed, movie director injured after Alec Baldwin discharged prop firearm on movie set


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This is awful news. What the hell happened??? Who was in charge of the gun safety??? We have a system of checks and balances for guns on set to PREVENT anything like this from occurring! We need to know where the accountability lies with the First Assistant Director, the Prop Master and/or the Armorer. They are directly responsible for gun safety on set. And if the reports are true that Baldwin was the trigger man, what the fuck was he thinking? He could possibly be charged with involuntary manslaughter! I’m really upset and angry about this. Another senseless death on a movie set where everything should be make believe. Heads should roll!!! 
G

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Greg...

'...accountability lies with the First Assistant Director, the Prop Master and/or the Armorer.'

Standards seem to have gone to hell in many areas of work. Could be lax safety.  Someone said maybe Baldwin was supposed to shoot in the direction of the camera. Dunno. Or maybe Baldwin was joking around playing bang-bang. I read 2 people were injured. Maybe he had a machine gun. Time will tell when the facts come out.

'Another senseless death on a movie set...' 

Are there many deaths on movie sets Greg?

 

 

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1 hour ago, Daniel D. Teoli Jr. said:

Are there many deaths on movie sets Greg?

more than there ever needs to be

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_film_and_television_accidents

sarah jones was killed in 2014, but it feels like yesterday. 

shocking and stupid really

Edited by Kyryll Sobolev
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2 hours ago, Daniel D. Teoli Jr. said:

Greg...

'...accountability lies with the First Assistant Director, the Prop Master and/or the Armorer.'

Standards seem to have gone to hell in many areas of work. Could be lax safety.  Someone said maybe Baldwin was supposed to shoot in the direction of the camera. Dunno. Or maybe Baldwin was joking around playing bang-bang. I read 2 people were injured. Maybe he had a machine gun. Time will tell when the facts come out.

'Another senseless death on a movie set...' 

Are there many deaths on movie sets Greg?

 

 

Yes 2 people were involved. The cinematographer is now dead! The director was injured! There is no excuse for this under any circumstances!!! I looked at IMDb and RUST seemed like a smaller size production that had people of limited experience in charge. But that is not the real issue. We work in a world of make believe. In reality, this is COMMON SENSE! It’s not even a movie issue. Simple common sense would have prevented this from ever happening. And to answer your question, this thankfully does not happen often. But when it does happen, the people involved need to be held responsible. 

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  • Tim Tyler changed the title to Director of photography killed, movie director injured after Alec Baldwin discharged prop firearm on movie set

Cinematography.com sends our deepest thoughts and condolences to the family, friend and colleagues of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.

Cinematographer Halyna Hutchins

Santa Fe New Mexican news article By Victoria Traxler:

The director of photography for the feature film Rust, Halyna Hutchins, 42, died at University of New Mexico Hospital in Albuquerque, and director Joel Souza, 48, was taken to Christus St. Vincent Regional Medical Center, where he was receiving emergency care, the sheriff’s office said.

Baldwin is one of the film’s stars as well as a producer. He went to the sheriff’s office willingly and provided a statement to investigators, sheriff’s office spokesman Juan Ríos said.

“We’re treating this as we would any other investigation,” Ríos said, adding deputies were still trying to determine whether what happened was an accident.

The Santa Fe County Sheriff's Office responded to the scene of a fatal accidental shooting at a Bonanza Creek Ranch movie set Thursday.

The prop was fired at Bonanza Creek Ranch, where filming was underway, the sheriff’s office said in an early evening news release. The set was locked down while deputies began their investigation.

Attempts to get comment from Baldwin outside the sheriff’s office were unsuccessful. The state film office and the Santa Fe Film Office declined to comment.

Deputies were investigating how the incident occurred and “what type of projectile was discharged,” the sheriff’s office said in a release.

In a statement, Rust Movie Productions said, “Production has been halted for the time being” on Rust and that “the safety of our cast and crew remains our top priority,” according to Deadline.

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Speaking as someone who has at least some small influence over "what's in the papers," it won't be "in the papers" until someone who was there goes on the record to talk about it. You know where to find me.

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Found this on another forum about this subject. Maybe of use if some of you use guns as props. 

 

Here’s How a Prop Gun Using Blanks Can Still Fire a Fatal Shot

Explainer: the rules for shooting on film sets

Management of firearms and other weapons in productions

Set Safety 101: Replica and Prop Firearms
 

Movie Gun Services LLC

New York's #1 provider of LIVE blank-fire firearms, Exotic Weapons for TV, Film & Print
www.moviegunservices.com
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It’s being reported that the loaded gun was placed on an open cart where the First AD, Dave Halls, picked it up without either checking with the amourer if it was ok to take it or checking if the gun was loaded or empty. If true, he needs to be thrown out of the DGA and prevented from working in our industry again for violating the basic protocols of gun safety on set that he is directly responsible for. Also, the amourer needs to be disciplined for leaving a loaded gun out in the open where Halls was able to retrieve it unsupervised. It should have been unloaded in a locked gun box til it was time to use with all parties aware of the gun’s status including the actor who shares this irresponsibility. 
 

I mean really! Who in their right mind would ever point a gun at someone and pull the trigger if you hadn’t confirmed whether the gun was empty or not?? My God! This is common sense! Alec Baldwin absolutely shares the responsibility of Halyna’s death. 
 

G

Edited by Gregory Irwin
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3 hours ago, Gregory Irwin said:

It’s being reported that the loaded gun was placed on an open cart where the First AD, Dave Halls, picked it up without either checking with the amourer if it was ok to take it or checking if the gun was loaded or empty. If true, he needs to be thrown out of the DGA

Yeah, it's not like he grabbed a prop cell phone and handed it to an actor just to keep things moving.  It's mothertrucking gun.  It's heavy, deadly, gun. You're right, it seems like common sense was tossed out the window.

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I hate to sound a note of dissent, but I'm not sure what relevance the union connection has.

If even half of what we've heard is true, a series of absolutely catastrophic oversights was made here. Many serious accidents are eventually shown to have been caused by a combination of several factors which, individually, might reasonably be interpreted as a mistake anyone could make. If - if - what we're being told is true and the whole story, which it may not be, then these were not small mistakes. These were very, very big mistakes that most people should not be capable of making without involving significant external factors (chronic fatigue and understaffing spring to mind). I have very little experience with handguns, but I've seen no comment on this so far, including the rules that should have been followed, that has made me go and look anything up. This was not hard stuff.

As such the idea that this is an issue of insufficiently experienced people is, in my view, giving people excuses. This is a big, obvious danger. Anyone of average intelligence should have been able to control that danger, if only to the point of realising they were out of their depth and stopping. It shouldn't take a twenty year union veteran to make that decision.

On that basis I suspect there might be some details of what happened to which we're not privy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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It sounds like there was another related accident on set prior to the fatal shooting. Earlier in the week, two rounds were accidentally fired by Alec Baldwin's stunt double from a gun that was thought to be 'cold' - in other words no live ammo was supposed to be in that weapon at the time. The state of gun safety on that set was obviously shocking. 

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Its the same old thing , money. The armourer seems to be no more like a student ,who 4 ,months ago was a studio camera assistant trainee  ??  hiring cheap ,inexperienced people in theses roles = exactly what happened , and many flags had already been waved, the whole camera dept walked a few hours before , except the DoP and the Steadicam op ,because of safety and lack of promised hotel accommodation,  they hadn't been paid for 3 weeks , it was a shit show already .. the producers of these type of films literally do not care about people dying if they can save $20.. criminals,  no other word for it 

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5 minutes ago, Robin R Probyn said:

The armourer seems to be no more like a student ,who 4 ,months ago was a studio camera assistant trainee  ??  hiring cheap ,inexperienced people in theses roles = exactly what happened

Well, sure, but good grief, I have very rarely been involved in productions in the UK which used blank-firing weapons specifically because making it insurable requires rare, expensive people. Even in the USA, where more or less anyone can go and buy a wide variety of weapons at any time, one would expect the insurance requirements to be stern. Were they not invalidating their insurance?

On top of which, even a student should be able to do better than the reports we're receiving. I could have done better, and I've had no formal training around firearms whatsoever. As ever I suspect we don't have the full story and I'm loath to speculate further.

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12 hours ago, Phil Rhodes said:

I hate to sound a note of dissent, but I'm not sure what relevance the union connection has.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You’re right to a degree Phil, it’s common sense here. But sometimes lack of experience and the lack of aptitude for the position does away with common sense.  There are two relevant union aspects here. 
 

1. we are mourning the loss of one of our very own. She was a rising star in our guild with quite the story behind her. 
 

2. if this movie had been staffed by experienced union members, the likelihood of this accident drops significantly since the union members who are handling the guns must go through training and certifications in order to have that job.
 

In fact,  we all are required to go through numerous safety certifications in order to be eligible to work on union jobs. 
 

G

Edited by Gregory Irwin
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1 hour ago, Robin R Probyn said:

Its the same old thing , money. The armourer seems to be no more like a student ,who 4 ,months ago was a studio camera assistant trainee  ??  hiring cheap ,inexperienced people in theses roles = exactly what happened , and many flags had already been waved, the whole camera dept walked a few hours before , except the DoP and the Steadicam op ,because of safety and lack of promised hotel accommodation,  they hadn't been paid for 3 weeks , it was a shit show already .. the producers of these type of films literally do not care about people dying if they can save $20.. criminals,  no other word for it 

Regarding her experience, I gather that her father was a Hollywood gun expert and had taught her about guns on films. She had apparently had been armourer on a Nicholas Cage film "The Old Way". However, there seems to have been a breakdown in safety procedures and perhaps an overly relaxed culture on this production may have been a factor causing the incident. If her age, etc, was a factor in the mix may be revealed in the investigation.

Certainly, having crewmembers travel 50 miles from and to their accommodation would seem to indicate a production cutting every corner possible on costs.

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50 minutes ago, Brian Drysdale said:

Regarding her experience, I gather that her father was a Hollywood gun expert and had taught her about guns on films. She had apparently had been armourer on a Nicholas Cage film "The Old Way". However, there seems to have been a breakdown in safety procedures and perhaps an overly relaxed culture on this production may have been a factor causing the incident. If her age, etc, was a factor in the mix may be revealed in the investigation.

Certainly, having crewmembers travel 50 miles from and to their accommodation would seem to indicate a production cutting every corner possible on costs.

Well the whole camera crew walking off ,not being paid for 3 weeks , and already it seems 3 incidents of a gun going off doesn't sound good  , I would say this lady was not in control at all , my dad shot feature films but if I tried when I was 20 something, or even now, I doubt the result would have been the same , but more over I would never have got the job in the first place. She was cheap that the only answer , everything goes back to money , deaths , long hours , mental breakdowns , pressure , people shouting , bullying , .. its making a product for the least cost , same as making vacuum cleaners .. or anything .. squeeze the labour of those making it , ever has it been so , no union and your screwed , well effective union that is of course .

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Overall impression, from the outside, is that she wasn't on top of things, it's a job that needs tight controls in place and with guns around there can be a red mist that surrounds them, like letting off fireworks.

Being a western, there might've been a lot more guns around than on her previous outing in the job.

 

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According to the NY times & LA Times there were 2 other discharge incidents reported on the BBC News Site:

Quote

Crew members said that the discharges were inside a cabin that was being used as a set location. These crew members were part of a group that quit hours before the incident took place over complaints about working conditions and unpaid work.

 

 

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Never thought about unions. I like underground and independent films...all must be non-union me thinks. But I would lean towards unions having some standards and safer generally speaking. 

I read on another forum this was the armorer.

https://twitter.com/i/status/1452003565090783235

Working underground I constantly cut costs as much as I can. Sometimes it is not as safe as it could be. You know the deal...beggars can't be choosers. But I work alone, so if there was a mishap, it won't affect others.

Edited by Daniel D. Teoli Jr.
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Why would there be any live rounds in that gun in the first place? Someone loaded real bullets into a prop gun and laid it out on a props trolley? Why have live bullets on a movie set in the first place?

 

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