The script supervisor for the film “Rust,” who was standing near the film’s director of photography, Halyna Hutchins, when she was shot by actor-producer Alec Baldwin, has filed a lawsuit against Baldwin and other producers of the film.
Mamie Mitchell, a 40-year veteran in films who was the first person to call 911 after Hutchins was shot, announced the lawsuit on Wednesday. She stated: “I saw Alec going through his movement with the gun for the camera. 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. Then an explosion; deafening, loud gunshot. I was stunned: I heard someone moaning and I turned around and my director was falling backwards and holding his upper body and I turned around toward Alec and I saw Halyna going down to the left of me.”
“I ran outside and called 911 for help,” she continued. “We waited and eventually they brought Halyna out to the ambulance waiting outside the door. She was on a stretcher and not moving. They had some kind of large oxygen balloon thing on her face and her left hand was on her stomach; it was blue.”
She recalled, “I could not believe this was happening. I gave my statement to law enforcement and drove home. Ten minutes after I got home someone notified me that she was dead. I stood in my driveway screaming.”
I’ll never forget what happened on the set of “Rust” that day. I relive the shooting and the sound of the explosion from the gun over and over again. I’m depressed; I don’t feel safe; I feel like at any moment anything could happen to me and to those that I care about that are standing close to me. I don’t have a sense of guard rails in my life to keep me safe; I’m frightened of the future; this violent tragedy has taken away the joy in my life.
The lawsuit states:
Every safety protocol designed to ensure that firearms would be safely used were ignored, and actions that were taken were against all industry norms including, without limitation, as follows:
- Live ammunition was allowed onto the set despite the fact that live ammunition is never to be used nor brought onto any studio lot or stage
- Alec Baldwin, intentionally, without just cause or excuse, cocked and fired the loaded gun even though the upcoming scene to be filmed did not call for the cocking and loading of the firearm
- Alec Baldwin, intentionally, without just cause or excuse, fired the gun towards individuals, including Plaintiff, Ms. Hutchins, and Mr. Souza, even though protocol was not to do so.
The lawsuit states that the gun was handed to Baldwin by the assistant director, not the usual custom of the prop master or armorer handing an actor a gun; that the “industry wide safety bulletin for firearms mandates that all firearms are to be treated as though they are loaded,” that Baldwin should have assumed the gun was loaded and failed to check the gun to see if it was loaded, and that in normal practice the armorer hands the gun to the actor and shows that it is not loaded and that Baldwin knew this and did not follow normal protocol.
“The suit names 22 defendants associated with the film including Baldwin, Rust producers, six production companies — El Dorado Pictures, Thomasville Pictures, Short Porch Pictures, Brittany House Pictures, 3rd Shift Media and Streamline Global – armorer Hannah Gutierrez Reed, First Assistant Director David Halls and others,” The Daily Mail noted.
The head of lighting on “Rust,” Serge Svetnoy, who had worked on eight previous films with Hutchins, also filed a lawsuit on Wednesday targeting Baldwin, assistant director David Halls, and Hannah Gutierrez Reed, who was in charge of weapons on the set.