Iain Dale 7pm - 10pm
Alec Baldwin movie Rust to resume filming 18 months after on-set shooting tragedy
20 April 2023, 12:00
Filming of Alec Baldwin's Western movie Rust is et to resume as early as today, 18 months after the cinematographer was shot dead on the original production.
Baldwin, who has pleaded not guilty to two counts of involuntary manslaughter, is remaining in the the starring role.
Melina Spadone, the lawyer for Rust Movie Productions confirmed that production is set to start up again at the Yellowstone Film Ranch in Montana.
The original production had been taking place in New Mexico, where Rust Movie Productions finalised a settlement last month. The company agreed to a $100,000 (£80,000) fine to resolve a scathing safety review which found unheeded complaints and misfires on set before Halyna Hutchins was shot in October 2021.
Speaking about the filming restart, Ms Spadone said: "It will bar any use of working weapons and any form of ammunition. Live ammunition is - and always was - prohibited on set."
Bianca Cline will take Hutchins' place as cinematographer, with Joel Souza, who was injured in the shooting in New Mexico, returning as director.
Hutchins' husband Matthew will be an executive producer. Baldwin is a producer as well as the film's star.
Baldwin was pointing a pistol at the cinematographer during a rehearsal when the gun went off, killing Mrs Hutchins and wounding Souza.
Baldwin has said that the gun went off accidentally and he did not pull the trigger.
An FBI forensic report found the weapon “functioned normally” and would not fire without the trigger being pulled.
Charges of involuntary manslaughter were brought against Baldwin and the film's armourer Hannah Gutierrez Reed by the Santa Fe District Attorney's office last month. Lawyers for both denied any wrongdoing and said they intended to fight the charges in court.
Baldwin's lawyer, Luke Nikas, called the decision to charge the actor "a terrible miscarriage of justice".
"Mr Baldwin had no reason to believe there was a live bullet in the gun - or anywhere on the movie set," Mr Nikas said. "He relied on the professionals with whom he worked, who assured him the gun did not have live rounds."
A two-week preliminary hearing is due to begin in Santa Fe in early May to decide whether there is enough evidence for the case to proceed to trial.
The Hollywood star has reached a settlement in a wrongful death lawsuit brought by Mr Hutchins.
In February, Hutchins' family filed a new civil lawsuit against Baldwin and the production company seeking damages for alleged battery, intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligence and loss of consortium.
Hutchins' widower Matthew also approved a documentary about her in February.