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Alec Baldwin’s Rust resumes filming after tragedy on set

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Filming on Alec Baldwin’s Western movie Rust is resuming on Thursday, 18 months after the fatal on-set shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.

Baldwin, who has pleaded not guilty to two counts of involuntary manslaughter, is remaining in the the starring role.

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Principal photography is starting up again at a new location in Montana.

“It will bar any use of working weapons and any form of ammunition,” said Melina Spadone, lawyer for Rust Movie Productions.

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“Live ammunition is – and always was – prohibited on set.”

Halyna Hutchins in 2019
Image caption, Cinematographer Hutchins was regarded as a rising talent in the film industry

Bianca Cline will take Hutchins’ place as cinematographer, with Joel Souza, who was injured in the shooting in New Mexico, returning as director.

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Hutchins’ husband Matthew will be an executive producer. Baldwin is a producer as well as the film’s star.

Rust Movie productions, which Baldwin is part of, said in February the scene that was being rehearsed when Hutchins was shot has now been rewritten.

The company added that Cline, whose credits include Marcel the Shell With Shoes On and American Horror Story, will “complete Halyna’s vision for the film” and donate her salary to charity.

Souza said in February: “Though bittersweet, I am grateful that a brilliant and dedicated new production team joining former cast and crew are committed to completing what Halyna and I started.

“My every effort on this film will be devoted to honouring Halyna’s legacy and making her proud. It is a privilege to see this through on her behalf.”

Charges denied

In October 2021, Baldwin was rehearsing a scene on the set at a ranch near Santa Fe, New Mexico, when the “prop” gun he was holding fired, resulting in the death of the 42-year-old Ukrainian-born cinematographer.

Charges of involuntary manslaughter were brought against him and the film’s armourer Hannah Gutierrez Reed by the Santa Fe District Attorney’s office last month.

Lawyers for both denied any wrongdoing and said they intended to fight the charges in court.

Baldwin’s lawyer, Luke Nikas, called the decision to charge the actor “a terrible miscarriage of justice”.

“Mr Baldwin had no reason to believe there was a live bullet in the gun – or anywhere on the movie set,” Mr Nikas said. “He relied on the professionals with whom he worked, who assured him the gun did not have live rounds.”

A two-week preliminary hearing is due to begin in Santa Fe in early May to decide whether there is enough evidence for the case to proceed to trial.

The Hollywood star has reached a settlement in a wrongful death lawsuit brought by Mr Hutchins.

In February, Hutchins’ family filed a new civil lawsuit against Baldwin and the production company seeking damages for alleged battery, intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligence and loss of consortium.

Hutchins’ widower Matthew also approved a documentary about her in February.


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