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Alec Baldwin Details Fatal Accident On Rust Set, Says He Didn’t ‘Pull The Trigger’

Alec Baldwin in Mission: Impossible
(Image credit: Paramount Pictures)

Safety has been an ongoing conversation regarding TV and film sets, especially as there have been a number of tragic deaths in recent memory. This most certainly includes the passing of Halyna Hutchins, who died on the set of Alec Baldwin’s movie Rust when a prop gun accidentally discharged. Baldwin recently sat down to detail this tragedy, and maintains he never pulled the trigger.

News of the tragedy on the set of Rust quickly broke the internet, where some reported that Alec Baldwin might have accidentally fired the antique weapon (which somehow contained a live round). The 30 Rock actor recently sat down for an interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos, where he maintained that he never actually pulled the trigger. In his words,

I would never point a gun at anyone and pull the trigger at them, never.

Well, there you have it. Alec Baldwin is an experienced actor, who is likely quite familiar with the safety protocols that come with using a prop gun on set. So he maintains he would never point at someone and pull the trigger, even if it was just during a rehearsal.

Alec Baldwin’s comments to ABC marks the first longform interview the 63 year-old actor has done about the death of Halyna Hutchins. The full interview will premiere tonight on primetime, and will offer the actor-producer of Rust to give his perspective on the tragic on-set accident.

One of the biggest questions surrounding the accident that happened on Rust’s set is why there was ever a live bullet in the prop gun that Alec Baldwin eventually interacted with. Dummies and live rounds are supposed to be kept very separate, which has led some to blame armorer Hannah Gutierriez-Reed. In that same interview Baldwin addressed the bullets themselves, saying:

Someone put a live bullet in a gun, a bullet that wasn’t even supposed to be on the property.

For her part, Hannah Gutierriez-Reed’s lawyers maintain her innocence. What more, they’ve even alleged that someone might have mixed a live round in with the dummy bullets to purposefully sabotage production. It’s a bold take, and is part of why the ongoing situation continues to capture the attention of the public.

It remains to be seen how the investigation of Rust’s set will play out, and if anyone will be charged related to the death of Halyna Hutchins. Some folks on social media pointed the finger at Alec Baldwin, who was also a producer on the project. He certainly seems remorseful, sharing his complicated feelings with:

I think back and I think of what could I have done? She was someone who was loved by everyone who worked with [her] and liked by everyone who worked with [her], and admired... I mean, even now I find it hard to believe that [she’s gone]. It doesn’t seem real to me.

The tragedy from the set of Rust continues to ripple through the entertainment industry, and has the potential to inspire real change in the way guns are used. Dwayne Johnson has committed to not using real weapons on the set of his movies, instead allowing visual effects to give guns a sense of realism. Some TV sets have also followed suit, in hopes of keeping the cast and crew safe.

The investigation surrounding Rust will likely continue for the time being. Be sure to check out the 2021 movie release dates to plan your next movie experience. 

Corey Chichizola

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his famous actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.