A half-dozen camera crew workers walked off the set of ‘Rust’ to protest working conditions and safety only hours before the co-producer/actor Alec Baldwin fatally shot the camerawoman and wounded a director, the LA Times reported.
As a producer or co-producer, Baldwin would have responsibility for the conditions.
The cameraman said the conditions on the set of the low-budget film were unacceptable, including long hours, long commutes, and problems getting paid.
Sources said safety protocols were not followed, including gun inspections.
They said at least one of the camera operators complained last weekend to a production manager about gun safety on the set, according to the LA Times. Sources say one of those who complained about safety was Halyna Hutchins, who was killed accidentally by Alec Baldwin.
The report states that three crew members voiced concerns about two accidental prop gun discharges that occurred on Saturday, which happened when Baldwin’s stunt double accidentally fired two rounds after being told that the gun was “cold.”
“There were no safety meetings. There was no assurance that it wouldn’t happen again. All they wanted to do was rush, rush, rush,” a crew member said.
Another person had reportedly sent a text message to the unit production manager, warning, “We’ve now had 3 accidental discharges. This is super unsafe.”
This went on for days and camera operators, members of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees just left. Non-union members replaced them, and the union workers were ordered off the set.
Six hours later, the group was filming a gunfight at the church.
According to a Los Angeles Times accounting, the report states that when Baldwin was given the gun, crew members had shouted “cold gun.” The Associated Press also reported that an “assistant director” had announced, “cold gun.” Instead, Baldwin was given a gun that was loaded with live rounds.
“Cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was huddled around a monitor lining up her next camera shot when she was accidentally killed by Baldwin,” the LA Times wrote.
Joel Souza, the director of the movie, was crouching directly behind her.
One bullet hit both people as Baldwin removed his gun from his holster. Ammunition flew toward the people around the monitor.
THE DEAD CAMERAWOMAN HAD RAISED THE ALARM ABOUT SAFETY
Hutchins, who later died at the hospital, was one of the crew members raising the alarm and fighting for safer working conditions, the Times wrote.
The recording of the 911 call was just released on Friday.
The caller was heard saying during the recording, “They just f–king AD yelled at me at lunch talking about revisions. These motherf–kers … Did you see him come up to my desk and yell at me? He’s supposed to check the guns. He’s responsible for what happened.”
Unfortunately for Baldwin, as the producer, he bears some responsibility. Whoever ignored the safety warnings is responsible.
Alec Baldwin 911 call : Alec Baldwin’s ‘Rust’ 911 call released after fatal incident on movie set THE gun Alec Baldwin fired in the fatal shooting on the Rust movie set was handed to the actor loaded with a live round, according to a warrant from the ongoing police investigation. pic.twitter.com/x90aTxh2XU
— World News 24 (@DailyWorld24) October 23, 2021
— Los Angeles Times (@latimes) October 22, 2021