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Alec Baldwin took to social media on Monday to urge Hollywood to employ a police officer on every film and TV set that uses guns.
“Every film/TV set that uses guns, fake or otherwise, should have a police officer on set, hired by the production, to specifically monitor weapons safety,” the Rust star and producer tweeted from his account, which is now private. He also shared a screenshot of the tweet on his Instagram page.
His plea comes in the wake of the Oct. 21 tragedy on the New Mexico set of his indie Western. Director of photography Halyna Hutchins died that day after being struck by a live round from a gun fired by Baldwin. Director Joel Souza, who was standing behind Hutchins, was wounded and hospitalized before being discharged.
Ahead of the gun discharge, Baldwin had been handed the firearm by assistant director Dave Halls, who said it was a “cold gun” — meaning it wasn’t loaded — to rehearse a scene, according to a Santa Fe County Sheriff’s affidavit that was used to obtain a search warrant.
A day after the Rust incident, Baldwin tweeted about his “shock and sadness” regarding the tragedy.
“There are no words to convey my shock and sadness regarding the tragic accident that took the life of Halyna Hutchins, a wife, mother and deeply admired colleague of ours. I’m fully cooperating with the police investigation to address how this tragedy occurred and I am in touch with her husband, offering my support to him and his family. My heart is broken for her husband, their son, and all who knew and loved Halyna,” he wrote.
Last week, Baldwin reposted a lengthy statement from Rust costume designer Terese Magpale Davis that denied reports of unsafe working conditions on the set. Baldwin used the caption “Read this” in his repost of the message, in which Davis writes, “I’m so sick of this narrative. I worked on this movie. The story being spun of us being overworked and surrounded by unsafe, chaotic conditions is bullshit.”
Baldwin’s call for police to be present on sets with guns comes a few months after a group of activists renewed their demands that studios stop using police on set or at events in the wake of George Floyd’s killing by a police officer and the ensuing protests against police brutality and racism. The original demands were made by activist group BLD PWR as part of the “Hollywood 4 Black Lives” letter signed by Tessa Thompson, Tiffany Haddish, Cynthia Erivo and others in an effort to divest Hollywood from police ties and push the industry to invest more in Black creators.
Nov. 8, 9:20 a.m. Updated with background on activist group’s call to remove police from sets.
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