Alec Baldwin made his first on-camera comments Saturday on the fatal shooting that occurred on the “Rust” film set as he addressed paparazzi following him and his family in Manchester, Vermont.
“I’ve been ordered by the sheriff’s department in Santa Fe. I can’t answer any questions about the investigation. I can’t,” Baldwin said according to a video posted on TMZ’s website Saturday. “It’s an active investigation. A woman died. She was my friend.”
“The day we arrived in Santa Fe to start shooting I took her to dinner with Joel, the director,” Baldwin added. “We were a very, very well-oiled crew doing a film together and then this horrible event happened.”
Hutchins was working as the director of photography for “Rust” alongside Souza in Santa Fe, New Mexico, when Baldwin discharged a prop firearm last week, wounding both Hutchins and Souza. Hutchins was flown by helicopter to the University of New Mexico Hospital, where she was pronounced dead, while Souza was taken to a hospital by ambulance, officials said. Souza is currently at home recovering from his injuries.
Baldwin also said that he “talks to the cops every day” as they continue to investigate the shooting. “I’m cooperating with them,” he said.
When asked about his meeting with Hutchins’ husband, Matt, and her son, Baldwin said he “wouldn’t know how to characterize it.”
“The guy is overwhelmed with grief,” he said. “There are incidental accidents on film sets, from time to time, but nothing like this. This is a one in a trillion episode. So, he is in shock. He has a 9-year-old son. We are in constant contact with him. We are very worried about his family and his kid. We’re eagerly awaiting for the sheriff’s department to tell us what the investigation has yielded.”
While film-set injuries are not uncommon, there is little precedent for gun-related injuries and deaths.
In 2016, The Associated Press found that since 1990, at least 43 people have died while on U.S. film sets and more than 150 were left with life-altering injuries. But there were also several instances in which major accidents weren’t reflected in investigation records or did not appear in an Occupational Safety and Health Administration database of the most serious set accidents, The Associated Press reported.
Baldwin, an actor and producer in “Rust,” voiced his support for new safety measures regarding guns on movie sets.
“I’m all in favor of it and I will cooperate in any way that I can,” he said.
Santa Fe District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies told NBC News on Wednesday that the investigation into the “Rust” movie set shooting is “incredibly complex” and “will take a while.”
So far, no charges have been filed in connection to the shooting, the sheriff’s office said.