Alec Baldwin Shooting Happened Amid Union Working Conditions Protest - Reports
WASHINGTON, October 23 (Sputnik) - The fatal shooting of Soviet-born cinematographer Halyna Hutchins by actor and producer Alec Baldwin on the set of the movie "Rust" happened amid union protests related to the working conditions of the film crew, the Los Angeles Times reported, citing anonymous crew members.
Hutchins had reportedly been advocating for better working conditions for the crew on the film set at Bonanza Creek Ranch near Santa Fe, New Mexico, the report said on Friday. The crew complained of long working hours, problems getting paychecks, and the 50-mile drive they were expected to make from Albuquerque every day, three sources familiar with the matter reportedly said.
22 October 2021, 21:45 GMT
A member of the production staff ordered union camera workers - members of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees - to leave the set to be replaced by non-union workers, one crew member said. The shooting occurred approximately six hours after the union crews left.
The prop gun was misfired twice on Saturday and once more the previous week, the person said. They also noted a "serious lack" of safety meetings on set.
Rust Movie Productions LLC, who manages the film, said that they were never made aware of safety concerns on set in a statement.
"Though we were not made aware of any official complaints concerning weapon or prop safety on set, we will be conducting an internal review of our procedures while production is shut down. We will continue to cooperate with the Santa Fe authorities in their investigation and offer mental health services to the cast and crew during this tragic time," the production company said.
Baldwin said in a statement on Friday that he is fully cooperating with law enforcement’s investigation into the fatal shooting.
Hutchins was born and raised in Soviet-era Ukraine. She graduated from the International Journalism Department of Kiev University and collaborated with British documentary filmmakers as an investigative journalist before moving to Los Angeles several years ago.