Alec Baldwin and the production company behind the “Rust” movie have reached a settlement with the family of Halyna Hutchins, the cinematographer killed on the film’s set last October, attorneys for both sides announced Wednesday.
Baldwin was pointing a gun at Hutchins when it went off on Oct. 21, killing her and wounding the director, Joel Souza. They had been inside a small church during setup for filming a scene.
Baldwin has said the gun went off accidentally and that he did not pull the trigger. But an FBI forensic report in August found the weapon could not not have fired unless someone pulled the trigger.
Hutchins’ family filed a wrongful death claim in February against Baldwin and others in the film, accusing them of reckless behavior and cost-cutting measured led to the tragedy.
“Throughout this difficult process, everyone has maintained the specific desire to do what is best for Halyna’s son,” Baldwin’s attorney Luke Nikas said in a statement. “We are grateful to everyone who contributed to the resolution of this tragic and painful situation.”
The press conference in Los Angeles happened almost four months after the cinematographer was fatally shot on the set of “Rust” in New Mexico.
Hutchins’ husband, Matthew Hutchins, said in a joint statement announcing the settlement that the wrongful death case was being dismissed and called his wife’s death a “terrible accident.”
“I have no interest in engaging in recriminations or attribution of blame (to the producers or Mr. Baldwin),” Matthew’s statement said. “All of us believe Halyna’s death was a terrible accident. I am grateful that the producers and the entertainment community have come together to pay tribute to Halyna’s final work.”
He added that production of the Western will continue in January 2023, “with all the original principal players on board” and himself as executive producer.
Financial terms of the settlement were not released.
Baldwin, who also was a producer on the movie “Rust,” has previously said the gun should not have been loaded for the rehearsal.
Among the ammunition seized from the film location were live rounds found on a cart and in the holster that was in the building where the shooting happened. Blank and dummy cartridges also were found.
New Mexico’s Occupational Health and Safety Bureau in a scathing report issued in April detailed a narrative of safety failures in violation of standard industry protocols, including testimony that production managers took limited or no action to address two misfires on set prior to the fatal shooting.
“Rust” armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed is speaking out for the first time, one week after the accidental death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.
The bureau also documented gun safety complaints from crew members that went unheeded and said weapons specialists were not allowed to make decisions about additional safety training.
In reaching its conclusion that the shooting was an accident, New Mexico’s medical investigator’s office pointed to “the absence of obvious intent to cause harm or death” and stated that there was said “no compelling demonstration” that the revolver was intentionally loaded with live ammunition on the set.