Untested bullets and revolver drums as well as contradictions about live ammunition on the set: the references to violations of gun rules during the filming of the western "Rust" have been confirmed.
According to a search warrant released by the Santa Fe Sheriff's Office on Wednesday afternoon, assistant director Dave Halls admitted that he had not examined every cartridge in every chamber as prescribed before Alec Baldwin's fatal shot at cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.
Nor could Halls recall whether gunsmith Hannah Gutierrez had checked the drum on the Colt revolver before handing the gun to Baldwin for a trial scene at the Bonanza Creek film ranch in New Mexico.
Nevertheless, Halls gave the 45 caliber revolver, with the words "Cold Gun", to American sets indicating an unloaded weapon.
While Baldwin, leading actor and co-producer on "Rust", was practicing gripping techniques with the revolver on October 21, a shot went off.
The bullet hit Hutchins, who was standing next to the camera, in the chest.
As Sheriff Adan Mendoza confirmed on Wednesday, director Joel Souza was hit in the shoulder by the same projectile.
The 42-year-old camerawoman died a short time later in the hospital in Albuquerque.
Souza survived Baldwin's shot with minor injuries.
According to the search warrant for a truck in which the film guns were kept in a safe, the weapons master Gutierrez put on record after the accident that she had examined all the "dummies", the supposed blank cartridges, in front of the scene to ensure that they were not " sharp ”were. As the twenty-four-year-old explained, the ammunition was left unlocked on a wagon in front of the church during the lunch break. Basically, Gutierrez stated, there are no live ammunition on film sets.
Immediately after Hutchins' death, allegations against Halls and Gutierrez were raised in Hollywood. Filmmakers who worked with the assistant director and armorer on earlier sets accused them of being lax with security. During the filming of the western "The Old Way", the leading actor, Oscar winner Nicolas Cage, left the set furiously after repeated misfires under Gutierrez's supervision.
The production company Rocket Soul Studios announced after the accident in Santa Fe that they had removed Halls from the set of the slave drama "Freedom's Path" two years ago. Back then, a member of the crew was injured when a prop weapon misfired. “In the recent past, the film industry was considered to be safe when it came to handling weapons. On the set of 'Rust' comfort seems to have spread ”, Sheriff Mendoza summarized the results of the investigation on Wednesday.
As prosecutor Mary Carmack-Altwies said, charges are still on the table.
In contrast to Halls and Gutierrez, Baldwin was considered extremely careful when filming "Rust".
Cinematographer Reid Russell let the sheriff's office know that the sixty-three-year-old had always been careful with guns.
On an earlier shooting scene, Russell testified, Baldwin insisted on a security check and urged that a child be moved from the location to a safe location.Keywords: