Actor Alec Baldwin intended to shoot and kill cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the set of the film “Rust” last month, according to what some will likely see as a bizarre lawsuit filed on Wednesday.
Baldwin “intentionally” killed Hutchins, as was evident by his movements prior to filming a scene, alleged Mamie Mitchell, the script supervisor who called 911 after the shot was fired that killed the cinematographer and wounded director Joel Souza on Oct. 21, the New York Post reported.
“I saw Alec going through his movement with the gun for the camera,” Mitchell said, according to The Post.
“I was holding my script in my left hand and had taken out my iPhone and opened up my photos to check the continuity on his shirt and vest.,” she added. “Then an explosion. Deafening loud gunshot.”
“I was stunned. I heard someone moaning and I turned around and my director was falling backward and holding his upper body and I turned around toward Alec and saw Halyna going down to the left of me,” Mitchell said.
In her lawsuit, Mitchell claims that “Alec Baldwin intentionally, without just cause or excuse, cocked and fired a loaded gun even though the upcoming scene to be filmed did not call for the cocking and firing of a firearm.”
Baldwin has not been charged with a crime stemming from what now appears to have been an accidental shooting. No one else who worked on the film has been charged, either.
Also, Mitchell says that all of the safety protocols for the handling of firearms on set were ignored, including the existence of live ammunition. Previous reports have said the gun Baldwin used in the scene had also been used for live-fire target practice on the bucolic New Mexico set.
Mitchell’s lawsuit also alleges that “actions that were taken” on the day of the shooting “were against all industry norms.”
The lawsuit also names Hanna Gutierrez-Reed, the film’s armorer, as a defendant; in addition to Baldwin, the suit also targets the production company.
On Wednesday, Mitchell’s attorney, Gloria Allred, claimed that a number of warning signs existed in relation to firearms on the set before Hutchins was shot and killed. She said that a camera operator reported that there were two negligent discharges of a firearm during rehearsal, with the staffer telling a production manager in a text, “This is super unsafe.”
Allred also said that in sum, the events that led up to the shooting amounts to more than “simple negligence” because Baldwin, the film’s producers, and other staff members were “reckless” in not strictly adhering to guidelines regarding having guns and live ammo on a movie set.
Mitchell, in her suit, says that as “an industry veteran,” Baldwin should have been aware that only a prop master or armorer is supposed to hand actors firearms. Reports noted that an assistant director gave Baldwin the gun used in the scene, which is against protocol. Her suit further states that Baldwin could not then rely on the assistant director’s claim that the firearm was a “cold gun,” meaning it did not contain any live ammunition.
The script supervisor is suing for an unspecified amount related to future lost earnings as well as special and general damages. She is also seeking punitive damages and attorneys fees, The Post reported.
“I relive the shooting and sound of the explosion from the gun over and over again,” she said at the Wednesday press conference with Allred.
“I am depressed. I don’t feel safe. I feel that at any moment anything could happen to me and to those that I care about that are standing close to me,” she added.
“I do not have a sense of guardrails in my life to keep me safe. I’m frightened of the future. This violent tragedy has taken away the joy in my life.”
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