Political enemies target Baldwin in deadly shootout | State and regional
NEW YORK (AP) – Details still emerge of how Alec Baldwin accidentally shot and killed a cinematographer on a film set in New Mexico, but some political viewers were quick to blame one of the Hollywood’s most prominent liberals.
Pundits and right-wing politicians have long resented Baldwin’s criticism of former President Donald Trump and his parody of Trump on “Saturday Night Live.”
On Monday, Trump’s oldest son was selling $ 28 T-shirts on his official website with the slogan “Guns don’t kill people, Alec Baldwin kills people.” The message was then deleted.
Gun violence has long divided the country, but the fact that some observers seemed to revel in Baldwin’s role in the shooting added a political dimension to the tragedy. CNN host Jake Tapper on Sunday called Cackling’s death “heartbreaking for normal people.”
“But there is something about our current policy that alienates people from our common humanity,” Tapper said.
Court records have provided some details of Halyna Hutchins’ death on the set of “Rust” near Santa Fe, New Mexico. Authorities said deputy director Dave Halls handed the gun to Baldwin and announced a “cold pistol,” indicating the gun was safe to use.
In an affidavit released on Sunday night, the film’s director Joel Souza said Baldwin was rehearsing a scene in which he pulled a gun out of its holster and pointed it at the camera, behind which Hutchins and Souza were behind. Souza, who was injured by the shooting, said the scene did not call for the use of live ammunition.
It is not yet clear where the weapons handling protocol failed. Souza said the guns in the film were usually checked by gunsmith Hannah Gutierrez-Reed and then again by Halls.
At least two people have expressed doubts about Halls’ safety record.
In an emailed statement to The Associated Press, a producer of the film “Freedom’s Path” confirmed on Monday that Halls was fired from the 2019 production after a crew member sustained a minor injury “when a gun was unexpectedly discharged “. The producer, who asked not to be identified by name, wrote that Halls “was immediately taken off the set.” Production only resumed after Halls’ demise.
Accessory designer Maggie Goll said on Sunday that she filed an internal complaint in 2019 regarding Halls’ behavior on the set of Hulu’s “Into the Dark” series. Goll said Halls ignored safety protocols for weapons and pyrotechnics and attempted to continue filming after the supervising pyrotechnician, who was diabetic, passed out on set.
Neither Gutierrez-Reed nor Halls responded to requests for comment on the shooting.
In the affidavit, cameraman Reid Russell said Baldwin was careful with guns. Russell was unsure if the weapon had been checked before it was handed over to Baldwin.
In the aftermath of Hutchins death, many in the film industry argued that real guns should be replaced entirely with computer-generated effects.
“There shouldn’t have been a loaded gun on set,” actor Riley Keough wrote on Instagram. “We don’t need real guns, we can make aftershocks and we have CGI. In my opinion, that is the problem here. Not Alec Baldwin.
And even, as director Gigi Saul Guerrero observed, Baldwin was the “face of this tragic story”. The 63-year-old actor, a staunch supporter of gun law reforms, has been widely mocked by the far right on social media.
United States Representative Lauren Boebert, a Republican from Colorado, quoted a tweet from Baldwin last year supporting the Black Lives Matter protesters in which Baldwin said he was going to make T-shirts that read: ” My hands are up. Please don’t shoot me! Wrote Boebert: “Alec Baldwin, are they still available? I ask for a film producer.
Boebert received a lot of criticism. Actor George Takei said Boebert had “no soul”. Rosanna Arquette wrote: “It was a tragic and horrible accident. Shame on you and Ms. Boebart for politicizing her. But Boebert backed his tweet.
“You Blue Checks freaks want to take away our right to defend ourselves with a gun, and you don’t know ANYTHING about basic gun safety!” Boebert wrote. “If it was a conservative celebrity, you would call her head.”
The film’s chief electrician, Serge Svetnoy, blamed the producers for Hutchins’ death in a moving Facebook post on Sunday. Svetnoy blamed the “negligence and unprofessionalism” of those handling guns on set, and claimed the producers hired an inexperienced gunsmith.
“I’m sure we had professionals in every department except one – the department responsible for weapons,” Svetnoy wrote. “The person who should have checked that gun before bringing it to the set didn’t. And MAN’S DEATH IS THE RESULT!
A spokesperson for the film’s production company, Rust Movie Productions LLC, said it is cooperating with authorities and is conducting an internal review. The company has said it is stopping production on the film but has signaled it may resume in the future.
Baldwin said he was cooperating with the law enforcement investigation and called the shooting a “tragic accident.”
Associated Press editors Hillel Italy in New York and Lindsey Bahr in Pittsburgh contributed to this report.
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