‘Rust’ gaffer sues Alec Baldwin, armorer for negligence



A lighting technician from the set of “Rust” is suing Alec Baldwin and the film’s armorer for negligence, claiming he suffered emotional distress after nearly being hit by the bullet that killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.

The film’s gaffer, Serge Svetnoy, claims he held Hutchins in his arms as blood poured from her gunshot wound, and desperately tried to save her after Baldwin accidentally shot her with a loaded prop gun, according to a lawsuit filed Tuesday in Los Angeles County Court.

Svetnoy claims the 63-year-old actor should have checked the gun before pulling the trigger.

“[Baldwin] owed a duty to [me] and other crew members and actors on the ‘Rust’ set to handle the Colt Revolver provided to him by defendant Halls with reasonable care and diligence for the safety of ‘Rust’ cast and crew,” the suit states. 

The Bonanza Creek Ranch in Santa Fe, N.M., where actor Alec Baldwin pulled the trigger on a prop gun while filming "Rust" and unwittingly killed a cinematographer and injured a director is seen on Oct. 23, 2021. The assistant director who handed Baldwin the gun said he hopes the tragedy prompts the film industry to "reevaluate its values and practices" to ensure no one is harmed again
Svetnoy claims he’s endured mental trauma and is demanding unspecified damages.
AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File

 “This duty called for Defendant Baldwin to double-check the Colt Revolver with Halls upon being handled to ensure that it did not contain live ammunition,” it continues. “This duty further called for [Baldwin] to handle the Colt Revolver as if it was loaded and to refrain from pointing it at anyone.”

In the scene Baldwin was rehearsing, the actor was supposed to draw the gun and point it in the direction of the camera — but not pull the trigger, according to the lawsuit.

The gaffer — who is also suing the film’s armorer, Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, along with assistant director Dave Halls and others — also claims the people in charge failed to keep workers safe on set.

Alec Baldwin
Svetnoy claims Alec Baldwin should have checked the gun himself before pulling the trigger.

“They attempted to save money by hiring an insufficient number of crew members to safely handle the props and firearms,” the suit states, noting Baldwin was a producer on the film. It also alleges they violated industry norms, failed to allow proper time for gunfire and declined requests for a weapons training day.

In the lawsuit,  Svetnoy calls the target practice with cans that took place shortly before the tragedy “outrageous.”

Svetnoy claims he’s since endured mental trauma and is demanding unspecified damages and a jury trial.

Reps for Baldwin and Gutierrez-Reed could not immediately be reached for comment.

Baldwin fired a single bullet that hit and killed Hutchins, exited her body and struck director Joel Souza in the clavicle while shooting the flick in New Mexico on Oct. 21.


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