In an interview set to air Thursday at 8 p.m., actor/activist/anger management failure Alec Baldwin sat down with ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos to discuss the day last October when he shot and killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins and wounded director Joel Souza on the set of his Western movie Rust, being filmed at the Bonanza Creek Ranch in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Questions remain as to how the tragedy unfolded, such as how a live round ended up in the chamber, why did Alec Baldwin not check the gun before firing, why were proper safety precautions not followed after several crew members voiced concern, and, most importantly of all, who bears the most responsibility.
The film’s head armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed and assistant director Dave Halls reportedly were the last two individuals to handle the firearm before it was given to Baldwin. Gutierrez-Reed was criticized by some on the set for unprofessional handling of weapons, while Halls had been fired from a previous job after a gun went off on a set, wounding a crew member.
One crew member who held Hutchins after she was shot filed a lawsuit alleging that Rust producers, including Baldwin, failed to follow proper safety protocols on set. Santa Fe County Sheriff Adan Mendoza said there was “some complacency” on the movie set about how weapons were handled.
Speaking on the WTF With Marc Maron podcast, actor George Clooney said “stupid mistakes” led to Hutchins’ death, noting that he always checked the chamber of the gun on any set before firing. “Every single time I’m handed a gun on the set — every time — they hand me a gun, I look at it, I open it, I show it to the person I’m pointing it to, I show it to the crew. Every single take,” Clooney said. “You hand it back to the armorer when you’re done.”
Sounds like Clooney is suggesting the final responsibility lay with Baldwin himself, a staunch opponent of the Second Amendment.