The family of the cinematographer who was shot to death on the set of the movie “Rust” is suing Alec Baldwin and the film’s producers for wrongful death.
Lawyers for the family of Halyna Hutchins announced the lawsuit filed in New Mexico on behalf of Hutchins’ husband, Matthew Hutchins, and their son, Andros, at a news conference in Los Angeles on Tuesday.
At least three other lawsuits have been filed over the shooting, but this is the first directly related to one of the two people shot.
The “reckless conduct and cost-cutting measures” of Baldwin and the film’s producers “led to the death of Halyna Hutchins,” attorney Brian Panish said.
A video created by the attorneys showed an animated recreation of the shooting.
Baldwin was pointing a gun at Hutchins during preparation for filming a scene from the western in New Mexico on October 21 when the gun went off, killing Hutchins and wounding director Joel Souza.
Baldwin has said that he aimed it at Hutchins on his instructions and that the gun went off without him pulling the trigger.
Lawyers said in the video that Baldwin had refused training for the type of gun draw he was practicing when he shot Hutchins.
They said that industry standards require the use of a rubber band gun or similar prop for such scenes, and that the presence of a real weapon was not warranted.
Last month, nearly three months after the shooting, Baldwin turned his cell phone over to authorities in his home state of New York. Information collected from the phone was provided to Santa Fe County investigators, who had obtained a warrant.
Investigators have described “some complacency” in the way weapons were handled on the “Rust” set. They have said it is too early to determine if charges will be filed.
Baldwin said he doesn’t think he will face criminal charges.
The film’s script supervisor and its lead camera operator, who were standing a few feet from Hutchins, filed a lawsuit over the trauma they endured.
And the film’s gunsmith, Hannah Gutierrez Reed, named as a defendant in those lawsuits and blamed by some for the shooting, filed her own lawsuit saying an ammunition supplier created dangerous conditions by including live bullets in a box that was supposed to it was to include only blank bullets.
In an interview with ABC News in December, Baldwin said he felt incredible sadness over the incident, but not guilt.
“Somebody is responsible for what happened, and I can’t say who it is, but it’s not me,” said the actor and producer.
He said Hutchins had asked him to point the gun just to the side of the camera, toward his armpit, before it went off.
“I didn’t pull the trigger,” Baldwin said. “I would never point a gun at anyone and pull the trigger. Never”.
She added that Hutchins was “loved and admired by everyone who worked with her.”
Hutchins, 42, grew up on a remote Soviet military base and worked on documentaries in Eastern Europe before studying film in Los Angeles and embarking on a promising film career.
On her Instagram page, she identified herself as a “restless dreamer” and “adrenaline junkie.”
In a 2019 interview with the American Cinematographer, which named her one of the year’s rising stars, she described herself as an “army brat” drawn to the movies because “there wasn’t much to do outside.” She documented herself skydiving and exploring caves, among other adventures, and through her work with British filmmakers she became “fascinated with storytelling based on real characters.”