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In The Latest Entertainment News Of Alec Baldwin
A judge recently ruled that Rust’s production entity must provide records that could shed light on whether Alec Baldwin deviated from industry-standard safety measures on the movie set to cut costs. Prosecutors are seeking documents from Rust Movie Productions and Alec Baldwin, as well as his production company, El Dorado Pictures, to investigate whether Baldwin’s financial gains were tied to compromising safety regarding the use of firearms, per The Hollywood Reporter.
These records are crucial for Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, who faces charges of involuntary manslaughter and evidence tampering in the fatal shooting of the movie’s cinematographer when a gun Baldwin was holding accidentally discharged. Gutierrez-Reed has argued that the film’s producers hindered her ability to perform her job effectively by denying her requests for additional firearm training due to financial constraints.
Jason Bowles, Gutierrez-Reed’s lawyer, emphasized the need for transparency from Rust Movie Productions, stating, “It begs the question, what are they hiding and why?” (Rust Movie Productions did not respond to requests for comment.)
Baldwin’s charges were dropped in April, pending an investigation into whether the discharged gun had been modified. A forensic expert’s report in September contradicted Baldwin’s account, as he has maintained that he did not pull the trigger.
The subpoena to the company was issued in August, following Gutierrez-Reed’s lawyer’s revelation of relevant information regarding the production. This included Gutierrez-Reed’s requests for additional firearm training for Baldwin, which were denied, potentially violating industry-wide safety norms. These norms include intentionally firing a firearm during a scene that did not require it and receiving the gun from the assistant director instead of the armorer, who is responsible for handing it over after confirming that the chambers are empty, as recommended by the Industry-Wide Labor-Management Safety Committee.
Rust Movie Productions resisted the subpoena, claiming that prosecutors were on a “phishing expedition” with the intention of charging Baldwin and seeking confidential materials.
However, Judge Mary Sommer denied the company’s motion to quash the subpoena. Special prosecutor Kari Morrissey argued that Baldwin’s role as a producer and his financial interests in the film were relevant to Gutierrez-Reed’s case, potentially influencing decisions related to safety on set.
Morrissey mentioned that Baldwin’s agreements likely tied his compensation to the film’s production activities, including firearm training, which raises questions about whether Gutierrez-Reed’s requests were denied due to financial considerations rather than safety concerns. Prosecutors also suggested that Baldwin’s contracts might stipulate a percentage of profits from Rust, indicating a potential financial motivation that affected Gutierrez-Reed’s ability to perform her job.
A New Mexico safety agency found that Gutierrez-Reed had too many responsibilities. According to industry safety practices, an armorer must be present whenever firearms are handled and should have the authority to determine whether additional safety training is required. However, Gutierrez-Reed had to act as a props assistant when firearms were not in use. She was limited to eight paid days as an armorer and was instructed to spend the rest of her time as a props assistant. The New Mexico Occupational Health and Safety Bureau fined Rust Movie Productions $100,000 for “willful-serious” safety violations, as per a report.
Baldwin is facing lawsuits from multiple Rust crew members over the shooting. A judge advanced a claim of assault against the actor in a lawsuit filed by script supervisor Mamie Mitchell, citing industry safety guidelines that mandate all firearms to be treated as loaded, regardless of any statements made by assistant directors. The ruling emphasized that Baldwin could not rely on an alleged statement that the gun was “cold” and must take responsibility for checking the firearm himself.
“The industry wide safety bulletin for use of firearms mandates that all firearms are to be treated as though they are loaded because, as Alec Baldwin knew, guns are inherently dangerous weapons,” stated the ruling. “He had no right to rely upon some alleged statement by the Assistant Director that it was a ‘cold gun.’ Mr. Baldwin cannot hide behind the Assistant Director to attempt to excuse the fact that he did not check the gun himself.”
On October 21, 2021, within the confines of a structure designed to resemble a 19th-century wooden church, Mr. Baldwin was in the midst of rehearsing a scene that required him to perform a “cross drawing” maneuver with a revolver. While the crew was preparing for the shot, the firearm unexpectedly discharged, resulting in a bullet hitting Ms. Hutchins in the chest. The film’s director, Joel Souza, also suffered a gunshot wound, sustaining an injury to his shoulder.
Ms. Hutchins, aged 42, was swiftly transported by helicopter to a hospital in Albuquerque, where tragically, she succumbed to her injuries. Mr. Souza, aged 48, received immediate medical attention, being conveyed by ambulance to a hospital in Santa Fe. Thankfully, he was discharged the following day.
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