Actor Alec Baldwin recently did an interview with ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos, where he declared that he did not feel any guilt following the shooting of Halyna Hutchins on the set of Rust.
Before Baldwin declared he didn’t feel any guilt, the actor walked Stephanopoulos through the events leading up to the shooting and killing of Halyna Hutchins.
Baldwin tells Stephanopoulos, “That day I did exactly what I’ve done every day on that movie.”
He went on to describe the scene, “The scene is the two guys are there who have got me cornered and they think I’m shot pretty bad and I’m kind of wilting and they have a gun. And then a sound outside distracts them, and I then draw the gun at a cross draw out of my holster to pull the gun up like that and start to cock the pistol. Cut.”
“I’m handed a gun and someone declares, ‘This is a cold gun.’ The first AD,” Baldwin added.
The Rust actor and producer then said, “In my years on the sets of films, hot gun meant that there was a charge in there and cold gun meant there was nothing in there. When he’s saying this is a cold gun, what he’s saying to everybody on the set is that you can relax. The gun is empty.”
When asked what cold gun means, Baldwin responded, “Well, cold gun means there is no charge in there. There could be dummy rounds.”
Baldwin is then asked about the type of rehearsal he was doing for the scene, he responded, “It was a marking rehearsal, where I am going to show her. She is standing next to the camera. She’s like this. You are me. She’s got a monitor here. The camera is here filming that way.”
He then relayed, “She takes a monitor that is his monitor, the operator, and turns it toward her. It swivels. And she says to me, ‘Hold the gun lower. Go to your right. Okay, right there. Alright do that. Now, show it a bit lower.'”
“And she’s getting me to position the gun. Everything is at her direction. She’s guiding me through how she wants me to hold the gun for this angle. And I draw the gun out and I find a mark. I draw the gun out if I don’t. Cut. What’s really urgent is the gun wasn’t meant to be fired at that angle,” he stated.
Stephanopoulos then asserts that Baldwin is shooting directly into the camera lens. Baldwin corrects him, “I’m not shooting into the camera lens, I’m shooting just off in her direction. I’m holding the gun where she told me to hold it, which ended up being aimed right below her armpit. That’s what I was told, I don’t know.
The actor then claimed, “This was a completely incidental shot, an angle that might not have ended up in the film at all. But we kept doing this. So then I said to her, ‘Now, in this scene I’m going to cock the gun.’ And I said, ‘Do you want to see that?’ And she said yes.”
He continued, “So I take the gun and I start to cock the gun. I’m not going to pull the trigger. I said, ‘Do you see this?’ She says, “Well, just cheat it down and tilt it down a little bit like that.’ And I cock the gun and I go, ‘Can you see that? Can you see that? Can you see that?’ And she says…and I let go of the hammer of the gun and the gun goes off. I let go of the hammer of the gun and the gun goes off.”
Baldwin clarified, “That was the moment the gun went off. That was the moment the gun went off.”
As previously revealed in the trailer for the interview, Baldwin asserts he did not pull the trigger saying, “Well, the trigger wasn’t pulled. I didn’t pull the trigger.
Baldwin reiterates, “No, no, no, no. I would never point a gun at anyone and pull the trigger at them. Never.”
“That was the training that I had. You don’t point a gun at somebody and pull the trigger,” he added.
Baldwin then went into detail about the training he received, “On day one of my instruction in this business people said to me, ‘Never take a gun and go click click click click because even though it’s incremental you damage the firing pin on the gun. Don’t do that.'”
As the segment continues, Baldwin’s story slightly changes as he claims he didn’t cock the gun. He tells Stephanopoulos that he pulled, “the hammer as far back as I could without cocking the actual…”
Stephanopoulos says, “And you are holding on to the hammer?”
To which Baldwin replies, “I’m holding. I’m just showing her. I go, ‘How about that? Does that work? You see that?’ Do you see that? Do you see that?’ She goes, ‘Yeah that’s good.’ I let go of the hammer. Bang. The gun goes off.”
Baldwin then details what happened after the gun discharged, “Everyone is horrified. They are shocked. It’s loud. They don’t have their earplugs in. The gun was supposed to be empty. I was told I was handed an empty gun. If there were cosmetic rounds, nothing with a charge at all. A flash round, nothing.”
He continued, “She goes down. I thought to myself, ‘Did she faint?’ The notion that there was a live round in that gun did not dawn on me until probably 45 minutes to an hour later.”
“She’s laying there and I go, ‘Did she get hit by wadding? Sometimes those blank rounds have a wadding inside that packs like a cloth that packs the gunpowder. Sometimes wadding comes out and it can hit people and it can feel like a little bit of a poke,” he told Stephanopoulos.
“But no one could understand. Did she have a heart attack? The idea that someone put a live bullet in the gun was not even in reality,” Baldwin stated.
When asked if he went up to her, Baldwin responded, “I went up to her and then we were immediately told to get out of the building. We were forced to get out of the building. The medics came in. I mean I stood over her for 60 seconds. And she just laid there kind of in shock.”
Stephanopoulos then asks if she was conscious, Baldwin replies, “My recollection is yes.”
The interview then cuts to Baldwin talking about Director Joel Souza also being struck by the bullet. Baldwin says, “When she went down, he went down and he was screaming very loudly. And I thought, ‘What is he screaming? What happened?'”
Following a cut to the 9-1-1 call Baldwin says, “Within 15 minutes or 20 minutes after that the police arrived and took the church set and put the crime tap around it, the yellow tape, and forced us all to the perimeters of the parking area where we sat and waited.”
“She was in the church and she was not taken out of the church for quite awhile,” he said.
Stephanopoulos then asks, “But nobody told you what happened?” Baldwin answered, “No, no. It wasn’t until I was in the police station, hours later, it was like seeing aliens. It was utter disbelief over the idea… It was unacceptable the idea that it was a live round.”
He then detailed, “And finally one of the police officers at the conclusion of my interview. I was there for like an hour and half or so. She takes her phone and she slides it across to me and she says to me, ‘That’s what came out of Joel’s shoulder.’ A .45 caliber slug. It was a real bullet.”
Stephanopoulos then asks, “Had you known Joel had been hit?”
Baldwin responds, “No one had any idea until that police officer, that sheriff’s officer said to me, ‘This is the slug, .45 caliber slug that they took out of Joel’s arm.”
“And then the kind of insanity inducing agony of thinking that someone put a live bullet in the gun,” Baldwin concluded.
In the third segment of the interview, Baldwin claims he’s not responsible.
However, before he made that statement, he defended himself from a number of criticisms he faced for the shooting and killing of Hutchins.
Baldwin stated, “People said to me. I mean I got countless people online saying, ‘You idiot. You never point a gun at someone.’ Well, unless you are told it’s empty and it is the director of photography who is instructing you on the angle of a shot we are going to do.”
“And she and I had this thing in common where we both thought it was empty and it wasn’t. And that’s not her responsibility. That’s not my responsibility. Whose responsibility remains to be seen,” he declared.
Stephanopoulos then interjects, “Well, there are some who say that you are never supposed to point a gun at anyone on a set no matter what.”
Baldwin responded, “Unless the person is the cinematographer who is directing me where to point the gun for her camera angle. That’s exactly what happened.”
In a clip posted to ABC News’ Twitter account, Baldwin claimed he did not feel any guilt.
.@GStephanopoulos: “Do you feel guilt?”
Alec Baldwin: “No. Someone is responsible for what happened and I can’t say who that is, but I know it’s not me.”
— ABC News (@ABC) December 3, 2021
Stephanopoulos asks, “Do you feel guilt?”
Baldwin replies, “No, no. I feel that someone is responsible for what happened and I can’t say who that is, but I know it’s not me.”
An affidavit obtained by Deadline claims that Baldwin fired the gun.
It reads in part, “The prop-gun was fired by the Actor Alec Baldwin, striking the Cinematographer identified as (Halayna Hutchins) and Joel Souza (Director) who was behind the Cinematographer (Halayna Hutchins).”
It further states, “The Armorer (Hannah Gutierrez) was given the prop gun after it was fired by Actor Alec Baldwin, she then took the spent casing out of the prop-gun.”
“Joel explained that prior to the discharge of the firearm by Actor Alec Baldwin, they had been working on preparing for the scene before lunch,” it says later in the affidavit.
What do you make of Baldwin’s interview with Stephanopoulos? Do you believe him?