On Saturday, Deadline released a statement from “Rust” director Joel Souza regarding the fatal shooting death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.
“I am gutted by the loss of my friend and colleague, Halyna. She was kind, vibrant, incredibly talented, fought for every inch, and always pushed me to be better,” Souza said.
“My thoughts are with her family at this most difficult time … I am humbled and grateful by the outpouring of affection we have received from our filmmaking community, the people of Santa Fe, and the hundreds of strangers who have reached out … It will surely aid in my recovery,” the director added.
Hutchins was killed and Souza was injured on the set of “Rust” on Thursday after a prop firearm held by actor and co-producer Alec Baldwin discharged.
The Santa Fe Sheriff’s Department released a statement shortly after the incident indicating that an investigation was underway, and detailing what happened to Hutchins and Souza following the accident:
The sheriff’s office confirms that two individuals were shot on the set of Rust. Halyna Hutchins, 42, director of photography and Joel Souza, 48, director, were shot when a prop firearm was discharged by Alec Baldwin, , producer and actor.
Ms. Hutchins was transported, via helicopter, to University of New Mexico Hospital where she was pronounced dead by medical personnel. Mr. Souza was transported by ambulance to Christus St. Vincent Regional Medical center where he is undergoing treatment for his injuries.
In the days following the incident, new details have emerged indicating that Baldwin was handed a “hot gun” despite allegedly being told that it was “cold.”
The Daily Wire’s Ashe Schow reported on Saturday that an assistant director allegedly yelled out “cold gun!” before giving Baldwin the firearm that would eventually discharge and kill Hutchins, according to CNN’s reporting on court documents.
On Friday, news broke that crew on the set of “Rust” had previously complained about working conditions, having to drive from Albuquerque to the set near Santa Fe on a daily basis despite having been allegedly promised accommodation nearby.
Additionally, the Los Angeles Times reported on Friday that according to alleged witnesses, there had been safety issues on set, as well as concerns over multiple accidental discharges prior to the fatal shooting.
“They said at least one of the camera operators complained last weekend to a production manager about gun safety on the set,” the Times reported.
In a Friday statement, Baldwin said: “There are no words to convey my shock and sadness regarding the tragic accident that took the life of Halyna Hutchins, a wife, mother and deeply admired colleague of ours. I’m fully cooperating with the police investigation to address how this tragedy occurred and I am in touch with her husband, offering my support to him and his family. My heart is broken for her husband, their son, and all who knew and loved Halyna.”