“Rust” will undergo an internal safety review after the fatal accident that killed one and injured another.
On Thursday, the Western was filming in New Mexico when Alec Baldwin discharged his prop gun. The misfiring caused cinematographer Halyna Hutchins to die and sent director Joel Souza to hospital.
But according to Deadline, the film was undergoing issues before the accident, including a misfiring the day before.
“A gun had two misfires in a closed cabin,” a source told Deadline. “They just fired loud pops – a person was just holding it in their hands and it went off.”
“There should have been an investigation into what happened,” a crew member told the L.A. Times. “There were no safety meetings. There was no assurance that it wouldn’t happen again. All they wanted to do was rush, rush, rush.”
And before the fatal accident, many of the film’s crew quit, stating safety concerns.
“We cited everything from lack of payment for three weeks, taking our hotels away despite asking for them in our deals, lack of Covid safety, and on top of that, poor gun safety! Poor on-set safety period!” a crew member alleged on a private Facebook group the publication states. “They brought in four non-union guys to replace us and tried calling the cops on us.”
Rust Movie Productions, LLC said they weren’t “aware of any official complaints concerning weapon or prop safety.”
The full statement to Deadline read, “The safety of our cast and crew is the top priority of Rust Productions and everyone associated with the company. 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.”
Police have interviewed the film’s armourer and Baldwin, with both being released and no charges laid as of yet.
An email by IATSE’s 44 told members on Thursday that there was no prop master on set.
“Local 44 has confirmed that the Props, Set Decoration, Special Effects and Construction Departments were staffed by New Mexico crew members. There were no Local 44 members on the call sheet,” the email read in part.
They also claimed “a live single round” was shot from the prop gun, but authorities have yet to confirm that.