'There are no words to convey my shock and sadness': Alec Baldwin speaks after fatal incident with prop gun on set

By Zach Harper

Alec Baldwin says he is sending his support and love to the family of Halyna Hutchins, who died after a prop gun was discharged on the set of the western Rust on Oct. 21.

Police named the 63-year-old actor as the person who fired the prop firearm during the filming of Rust at Bonanza Creek Ranch near Santa Fe. Halyna, 42, was fatally wounded in the incident and pronounced dead upon arrival at hospital. Director Joel Souza, 48, received treatment for injuries he sustained in the tragedy and several outlets are reporting he's since been released from hospital.

"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," Alec tweeted on Oct. 22.

"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."

On Oct. 21, the Santa Fe County Sheriff said it was investigating the incident, including what was discharged from the prop gun and how it was fired. No one has been charged in connection with the incident.

On Oct. 22, Halyna's husband Matthew Hutchins expressed his grief to Insider.

"I am not going to be able to comment about the facts or the process of what we're going through right now, but I appreciate that everyone has been very sympathetic," he said. "I don't think there are words to communicate the situation."

Matthew also told theDaily Mail Alec had been in contact.

"I have spoken with Alec Baldwin and he is being very supportive," he said.

Production on Rust has been shut down as the investigation continues.

"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, the film's production company, said in a statement.

"We will be providing counselling services to everyone connected to the film as we work to process this awful event."

Halyna was killed in the incident on set on Oct. 21, and Joel is receiving treatment for his injuries. Photos: © Sonia Recchia/Getty Images and Jim Spellman/Getty Images

Some of Alec's family members also spoke out about the tragedy in its immediate aftermath.

"My love and support go to Halyna Hutchins's family and friends," Ireland Baldwin, Alec's daughter, wrote in her Instagram Story. "And wishing I could hug my dad extra tight today."

Stephen Baldwin, Alec's brother, asked fans to keep those affected in their thoughts.

"Asking for prayers tonight, friends," he wrote on Instagram early on Oct. 22. "Not much can be said other than please pray for all involved in the wake of this tragic accident. Thank you."

The International Cinematographers Guild, Local 600, said it was cooperating with the investigation.

"We received the devastating news this evening, that one of our members, Halyna Hutchins, the Director of Photography on a production called Rust in New Mexico, died from injuries sustained on the set," president John Lindley and executive director Rebecca Rhine said in a statement.

"The details are unclear at this moment, but we are working to learn more, and we support a full investigation into this tragic event. This is a terrible loss, and we mourn the passing of a member of our Guild's family."

Bonanza Creek Ranch is on the outskirts of Santa Fe. Photo: © Sam Wasson/Getty Images

Bonanza Creek Ranch has been a popular production location for Westerns since the 1950s, and it's hosted crews that have made classics such as Silverado and James Stewart's The Man from Laramie.

According to The New York Times, only blank ammunition is allowed on film sets. Some productions use replica guns or firearms made out of rubber, while films sometimes use real firearms that discharge blanks. There are also safety rules for what is considered appropriate distance for discharging any prop gun on set, an expert told the publication.

This is not the first time someone has died on set in an accident involving a prop gun.

In 1993, actor Brandon Lee – the son of actor and martial arts legend Bruce Lee – was killed on set during filming for the cult classic The Crow. An autopsy revealed the gun had contained a bullet when it was supposed to have had a blank. Actor John-Eric Hexum also died on set in 1984 when he put a prop gun containing blanks to his head and pulled the trigger.

"Our hearts go out to the family of Halyna Hutchins and Joel Souza and all involved in the incident on 'Rust,'" Brandon's family tweeted on Oct. 22. "No one should ever be killed by a gun on a film set. Period."

We are sending our thoughts and deepest sympathies to everyone affected by this tragic event.

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