A tragic turn of events. Halyna Hutchins was fatally shot with a prop gun by star Alec Baldwin on the set of Rust on Thursday, October 21, and following the news of her passing, it’s clear that she had a positive impact on Hollywood.
“The entire cast and crew has been absolutely devastated by today’s tragedy, and we send our deepest condolences to Halyna’s family and loved ones,” Rust Movie Productions LLC said in a statement on Thursday. “We have halted production on the film for an undetermined period of time and are fully cooperating with the Santa Fe Police Department’s investigation. We will be providing counseling services to everyone connected to the film as we work to process this awful event.”
Rust, starring Baldwin, Jensen Ackles and Travis Fimmel, is filming in New Mexico and follows the story of a man on the run with his 13-year-old grandson after the young boy is convicted of accidental murder in 1880s Kansas. Following the news of a shooting on set, police confirmed the 30 Rock alum fired the prop gun that killed the 42-year-old director of photography. Director Joel Souza was also struck and rushed to the University of New Mexico Hospital in Albuquerque.
“This investigation remains open and active. No charges have been filed in regard to this incident,” New Mexico Sheriff’s Department said in a statement on Thursday, noting that Baldwin came in “voluntarily” to speak with officers. “Witnesses continue to be interviewed by detectives.”
Hutchins had worked on dozens of productions before Rust, including 2020’s Archenemy, starring Joe Manganiello.
“I’m so sad about losing Halyna.” Archenemy director Adam Egypt Mortimer tweeted on Thursday. “And so infuriated that this could happen on a set. She was a brilliant talent who was absolutely committed to art and to film.”
Casting director Sidra Smith shared a loving tribute to Hutchins, offering insight into the type of woman she was.
“I just found out DEVASTATING news. My cinematographer for A Luv Tale Halyna Hutchins was killed in a terribly tragic accident on the film set of Rust. This breaks my heart into pieces,” she wrote. “We spoke when she was headed to shoot this film. She was so happy and I was so happy for her. It’s hard out here for women cinematographers and this was a HUGE opportunity for her. She was so young and so talented. Halyna and I spent so much time together. She was so beautifully gracious and words can not express how supportive she was to me. She loved black women, loved Harlem, was SUCH a hard worker. We laughed. This woman was AMAZING.”
Scroll through for more on Hutchins:
1. She Was Born in Ukraine
According to her website, Hutchins “grew up on a Soviet military base in the Arctic Circle surrounded by reindeer and nuclear submarines.” She graduated from American Film Institute in Los Angeles in 2015.
2. She’s Worked on More Than 40 Projects
Hutchins’ nearly 50 IMDb credits include working as an electrician, camera operator, director of photography, production assistant, second unit director and cinematographer. Two years ago, Hutchins was included as one of American Cinematographer magazine’s Rising Stars of 2019.
3. She Is a Mother
Casting director Smith revealed via Instagram that Hutchins “had a beautiful son and husband.” She concluded her note: “God bless her beautiful heart and soul. Life is so short. You never know when. This has me so so sad. Rest in peace, my beautiful sister. I will be forever grateful to you.”
4. She Was Beloved in Hollywood
Archenemy’s Manganiello is among the many stars paying tribute to Hutchins after Thursday’s tragedy.
“I’m in shock. I was so lucky to have had Halyna Hutchins as my DP on ‘Archenemy.’ An incredible talent & great person,” the actor tweeted. “I can’t believe this could happen in this day and age … gunfire from a prop gun could kill a crew member? What a horrible tragedy. My heart goes out to her family.”