CBS NEWS – TORI B. POWELL
Actor Alec Baldwin addressed last week’s deadly shooting on the set of his Western movie “Rust” in public for the first time Saturday, calling the incident a “one-in-a-trillion event.” In a video from celebrity news agency Backgrid, Baldwin referenced the active police investigation into the shooting, saying he could not say much about it.
“I’m not allowed to make any comments because it’s an ongoing investigation,” the actor told paparazzi. “I’ve been ordered by the sheriff’s department in Santa Fe. I can’t answer any questions about the investigation. I can’t. It’s an active investigation.”
On October 21, cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was killed and director Joel Souza was wounded when Baldwin fired a .45-caliber revolver during a rehearsal on the “Rust” set, according to the Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office.
Court records show the gun was handed to Baldwin by assistant director Dave Halls. Documents show Halls said “cold gun” before the rehearsal, indicating it was safe to use.
“She was my friend,” Baldwin said Saturday about Hutchins. “The day I arrived in Santa Fe to start shooting, I took her to dinner with Joel, the director. We were a very, very, you know, well-oiled crew shooting a film together and then this horrible event happened.”
Days after her death, Hutchins’ husband Matt Hutchins said “our loss is enormous” in a statement on Twitter.
“Halyna inspired us all with her passion and vision, and her legacy is too meaningful to encapsulate in words,” he said.
He told CBS News that Baldwin has been in touch and is being very supportive of the family.
Baldwin on Saturday said he’s very worried about Hutchins and his son.
“The guy is overwhelmed with grief,” Baldwin said. “He is in shock.”
The actor said he couldn’t say whether he would work on filmsets involving firearms in the future. “I have no sense of that at all,” he said.
“I do know that an ongoing effort to limit the use of firearms on filmsets is something I’m extremely interested in,” Baldwin said. He urged for new measures to be put in place to avoid dangerous incidents.
The investigation into the shooting remains under investigation, and no charges have been filed. Baldwin said he is “eagerly awaiting” the sheriff’s office to reveal what its investigation has yielded.
“There are incidental accidents on filmsets from time to time, but nothing like this,” he said. “This is a one-in-a-trillion episode. It’s a one-in-a-trillion event.”