Rust crew member Serge Svetnoy has filed a lawsuit against the film’s production team over the fatal shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins by Alec Baldwin.
The chief electrician on set is suing the production, the financiers, Baldwin, armourer Hannah Gutierrez Reed and many others for general negligence which caused him “severe emotional distress”, according to the lawsuit.
“This incident was caused by the negligent acts and omissions of Defendants, and each of them, as well as their agents, principals, and employers,” the lawsuit reads (via Deadline).
“Simply put, there was no reason for a live bullet to be placed in that .45 Colt revolver to be present anywhere on the Rust set, and the presence of a bullet in a revolver posed a lethal threat to everyone in its vicinity.”
Halyna Hutchins pictured in 2017. CREDIT: Anthony Harvey/Getty Images
Svetnoy claims he was “narrowly missed” by the rounds Baldwin shot on set at the Bonanza Creek Ranch in Santa Fe last month, which killed Hutchins and injured director Joul Souza.
“Defendants, and each of them, among other acts of negligence, failed to implement and maintain industry standards for custody and control over firearms used on the Rust set,” the lawsuit adds.
NME has reached out to the Rust production team and Alec Baldwin’s representatives for comment.
Svetnoy has previously been vocal about his trauma following the incident, saying he was “holding Hutchins in my arms while she was dying” in a Facebook post.
Shortly after the lawsuit was filed on Wednesday (November 10), Gutierrez Reed’s attorney, Jason Bowles, released a statement that questioned how the live rounds ended up in the “dummies” box – claiming she was “being framed” over the shooting.
“We are convinced that this was sabotage and Hannah is being framed,” Bowles said. “We believe that the scene was tampered with as well before the police arrived.”
A statement previously released by Rust Movie Productions LLC said: “The safety of our cast and crew is the top priority of Rust Productions and everyone associated with the company. Though we were not made aware of any official complaints concerning weapon or prop safety on set, we will be conducting an internal review of our procedures while production is shut down.”
Baldwin recently urged Hollywood on Twitter to implement more precautions when it comes to gun safety on set. “Every film/TV set that uses guns, fake or otherwise, should have a police officer on set, hired by the production, to specifically monitor weapon safety,” the actor wrote.