So far, no charges have been filed. The investigation into the incident remains ongoing.
Trigger Warning: This story discusses gun violence that may be disturbing to readers.
Actor Alec Baldwin, who was shooting for his upcoming western film at Bonanza Creek Ranch, a popular filming location, in New Mexico, accidentally misfired a prop gun, reports PEOPLE. A spokesperson for Baldwin said, "there was an accident today on the New Mexico set of Rust involving the misfire of a prop gun with blanks."
Around 1:50 pm local time in Mexico on October 21, 2021, cops received a 911 call indicating "an individual had been shot on set," the Santa Fe Sheriff's Department wrote in a press release. Further investigation revealed that cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, 42, and director Joel Souza, 48, were "shot when a prop firearm was discharged by Alec Baldwin, 68, producer and actor."
BREAKING: A distraught Alec Baldwin, after he accidentally shot & killed the cinematographer on the set of his new movie, & wounded the writer-director. How on earth could this have happened?— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) October 22, 2021
Pics: Jim Weber @thenewmexican pic.twitter.com/xrvcheLaCK
Even though Hutchins was airlifted to the University of New Mexico Hospital, she succumbed to her injuries. Souza is still undergoing treatment for his injuries at Christus St. Vincent's hospital.
"The entire cast and crew has been absolutely devastated by today's tragedy, and we send our deepest condolences to Halyna's family and loved ones," the film's production company, Rust Movie Productions LLC, said in a statement. "We have halted production on the film for an undetermined period of time and are fully cooperating with the Santa Fe Police Department's investigation. We will be providing counseling services to everyone connected to the film as we work to process this awful event."
Cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was killed in an incident involving a prop gun on the set of “Rust,” an Alec Baldwin film that was shooting in New Mexico on Thursday. https://t.co/7Xybp84H8M pic.twitter.com/3gz6pDvePz— Variety (@Variety) October 22, 2021
Following Hutchins' death, several people from the film industry paid tribute to the late cinematographer. "She was an absolutely incredible talent and a great person. She had such an eye and a visual style, she was the kind of cinematographer that you wanted to see succeed because you wanted to see what she could pull off next," wrote actor Joe Manganiello on Instagram, "and she was a fantastic person."
Per BBC, the International Cinematographer's Guild also released a statement, addressing Hutchins' death as "devastating news" and "a terrible loss".
"The details are unclear at this moment, but we are working to learn more, and we support a full investigation into this tragic event," said guild president John Lindley and executive director Rebecca Rhine.
Santa Fe County New Mexico Sheriff confirms tonight actor Alec Baldwin shot two people today on a movie set with a prop firearm that would normally be loaded with blanks. A 42 yr old woman, the director of photography - is dead. The film’s director is hospitalized #alecbaldwin pic.twitter.com/JbwNw9nZJP— Todd McDermott (@wpbf_todd) October 22, 2021
However, it has been revealed that Baldwin himself went to the police station to talk to the cops. "He came in voluntarily and he left the building after he finished his interviews," a Santa Fe sheriff spokesman said. So far, no charges have been filed. The investigation into the incident remains ongoing.
While stories of such freak accidents are rare, they are not uncommon.
Cover Image Source: Getty Images | Mark Sagliocco