US actor Alec Baldwin fired a prop gun that killed a cinematographer and wounded the director on a film set in New Mexico, US law enforcement officers said Thursday.
The incident happened on the set of Rust in the southwestern US state, where Baldwin is playing the lead in a 19th-century western. No charges have been filed over the incident, which is being investigated.
Halyna Hutchins and Joel Souza “were shot when a prop firearm was discharged by Alec Baldwin,” the sheriff in Santa Fe said in a statement, with Hutchins succumbing to her wounds.
According to AP, the Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office said a 42-year-old woman was airlifted to a hospital, where she died, while a 42-year-old man was getting emergency care at another hospital.
Production has been halted on the movie, which is being directed by Joel Souza with Alec Baldwin producing and starring in it. A spokesperson for Baldwin said there was an accident on the set involving the misfire of a prop gun with blanks.
The Santa Fe New Mexican reported Baldwin was seen Thursday outside the sheriff’s office in tears, but attempts to get comment from him were unsuccessful.
“According to investigators, it appears that the scene being filmed involved the use of a prop firearm when it was discharged,” sheriff’s spokesman Juan Rios told the Albuquerque Journal. “Detectives are investigating how and what type of projectile was discharged.”
Filming for Rust was set to continue into early November, according to a news release from the New Mexico Film Office.
The movie is about a 13-year-old boy who is left to fend for himself and his younger brother following the death of their parents in 1880s Kansas, according to the Internet Movie Database website. The teen goes on the run with his long-estranged grandfather (played by Baldwin) after the boy is sentenced to hang for the accidental killing of a local rancher.
(With AP inputs)