EXCLUSIVE: As the Santa Fe Sheriff’s Office continues their investigation of the fatal shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on October 21, which also injured director Joel Souza, on the set of the Alec Baldwin movie Rust, new claims and details are emerging of first assistant director, David Halls – including a 2019 complaint against him.
Early Sunday,Maggie Goll, who worked on Into the Dark as a day player as a prop assistant and on SFX requirements told NBC News that Halls “at first he seemed like an older, affable first [assistant director] with the usual run of idiosyncrasies, but that facade soon disappeared.” Goll went on to say Halls “did not maintain a safe working environment.” Also interviewed on-air, the masked crew member claimed that “sets were almost always allowed to become increasingly claustrophobic, no established fire lanes, exits blocked … safety meetings were nonexistent.”
In a statement Goll sent Deadline this afternoon, the crew member further added that she reached out to IATSE on Saturday to institute an investigation of Hall’s on-set behavior, specifically in terms of safety. While the armorer is responsible for firearms safety on a set, the First AD is responsible for all safety issues overall.
In that context, the detailed affidavit submitted Friday to the New Mexico courts for a subsequently issued search warrant on the Rust tragedy said that just before the shooting of Hutchins and Souza, Baldwin on the afternoon of October 20 was handed one of a trio of prop guns from a nearby cart by Halls. Preparing for a rehearsal scene, the Rust star and producer was told the prop was a “cold gun” that did not have any live rounds in it.
Indicating that three prop guns were prepped by the on-set armorer, who is named as Hannah Gutierrez in the October 22 filing from Detective Joel Cano, the affidavit said that Halls “did not know live rounds were in the prop gun.” Among various components of the search warrant, the police are seeking to see if any footage of the fatal accident exists. As well they are seeking other items such as the “Old Western Style” outfit Baldwin was wearing at the time of the shooting, phones, memory cards and more.
We understand that the $7M production of the now halted for an “undetermined period of time” Rust was 50% completed at the time of the bloody incident.
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