Alec Baldwin Movie set Gun situation question

Discussion in 'Visual Arts' started by DaleClark, Jan 30, 2023.

  1. Crack To The Egg

    Crack To The Egg Forum Resident

    Again, what we’re looking at is so low res I don’t think we can say the actual shot was under lit. I have no doubt the gun and bullets looked different through the camera viewfinder.

    But maybe you’re right and it was poorly lit and the bullets didn’t matter to the shot. Given how quickly they were moving a lot of this could easily be chalked up to lack of thought. Maybe they weren’t sure if it was going to be visible, so they had dummies just in case.

    But more than likely, it looked different on camera.
    Matthew Tate likes this.
  2. SandAndGlass

    SandAndGlass Twilight Forum Resident

    I have a background in photography, I do understand this.

    Obviously the scene was shot mid-day in a sunny desert.

    When I use the term "darkened" I am referring to the overall effect that was created in the room by lighting and exposure.

    Yes, I understand that a snub-nose revolver, such as detectives used to carry concealed, may have a short 2" barrel. But the amunition is still the same as the ammo for a larger service revolver.

    David Halls has been around guns on and off of movie sets for a number of years. Though he has an overall familiarity with firearms and a .45-caliber Colt, he does not seem to be familiar with the specific nomenclature that might be used by a firearm professional.

    His job is to coordinate all aspects of what takes place behind the camera. He doesn't immerse himself directly into any single vertical aspect of the set.

    I watched Halls in an interview with the Sheriff’s office immediately after the incident. I am only commenting on statements he made.

    My takeaway form watching and listening to him speak, was that he did not feel that the ammunition the police were showing him, was consistent with his normal take on .45-caliber ammo.

    Why else would he use a specific term like snub-nose with relation to the ammo?

    You would have to ask him. My take on his statement was that he was expressing that the cartridges were shorter than .45-caliber Long Colt.

    I'm just noting his comments. Something here clearly caught his attention.

    I don't know that any of this would have an effect on the outcome.
  3. SandAndGlass

    SandAndGlass Twilight Forum Resident

    This might very well be a screenshot of footage that was through the viewfinder. I have seen that footage. It wasn't long and there were two clips that were found in the camera.

    The viewfinder footage included the camera moving around to get the correct framing for the scene. The viewfinder footage is also a wide-screen ratio.

    We just don't know? I don't get the impression that this production was storyboarded out. Helena was given complete creative control over the shots by Director Souza.

    The camera rig was very close to Baldwin, like 4' away. The minimum distance to safely use blanks would be 3'.

    We have to remember that six out of eight members of the camera crew left. The days production was already two hours behind getting started.

    Only the camera operator was persuaded to remain and there was one other person there to assist him to operate the dolly and maybe pull focus?

    So no second camera was present to film an alternate angle..

    Maybe what was actually set to be filmed was different than what was originally intended? More likely this was the case?

    If the still was a capture from the camera, it was likely cropped and enlarged. This might explain the poor resolution?

    Still, .45-caliber is just under a half inch in diameter. Look at the front view of Baldwin holding the two guns. The diameter of the barrels are HUGE! These guns are apparently empty..

    This is some info on the ammunition:

    "Quite possibly the most iconic cartridge in the United States, the .45 Colt was developed by gunmaker Samuel Colt as a black powder cartridge in 1872, for the Colt Single Action Army (aka the Peacemaker) revolver. This cartridge features a .454-inch bullet inside a rimmed, straight-walled case that measures 1.285 inches in length. Commonly called the .45 Long Colt (LC), the overall length of the round is 1.6 inches. It features a large pistol primer and is pressurized to 14,000 pounds per square inch (psi)."

    Being dark, we do loose a lot of detail. But we do clearly see the gun, the barrel and the cylinders.

    If the dummies can not be seen, it would be more likely due to the darkness and shadows in the shot.

    See above. Again, I will have to locate these clips again and rewatch them.

    The script / call sheet would have been already made out and planned in advance of the day's shooting. If it called for dummy rounds, then that is what would have been loaded into the gun, earlier in the morning.
  4. SandAndGlass

    SandAndGlass Twilight Forum Resident

    I found one of the videos that shows Baldwin rehersing. This was not the one that I first saw. The original video I watched showed the camera swinging around and moving side to side as it was moving into position. It was further away or more in wide angle mode, showing more of the church interior.

    Video shows Alec Baldwin rehearsing with gun just before shooting | Dan Abrams Live

    I can't really tell anything more from this video. See that the still might be a screen capture from this?

    I am viewing this from a small smartphone. Even in landscape mode, I can't really see any detail. Perhaps someone who is able to view this on a laptop or larger monitor?

    Also, with regard to the bullet size, no one else has noticed or mentioned this. Both the Armor and the Prop Master handle these rounds on a daily basis and did load the weapon on the morning of the 21st.
    Matthew Tate likes this.
  5. SandAndGlass

    SandAndGlass Twilight Forum Resident

    I personally think the Sheriff and the DA's office were bad actors with regard to this investigation and the resulting charges against Baldwin, Halls and Hannah.

    These particular individuals set out to achieve this end from the outset. Instead of an investigation to determine what had transpired, the investigation was conducted with the intent of securing a particular outcome.

    Helena was murdered. Keeping in mind that the definition of murder is the unlawful taking of another life.

    There can be murder one, which dictates an event that was premeditated. It can be in the second degree, which would be something "in the heat of the moment", not planned.

    Or, it can be in the third degree, which is manslaughter, meaning not intentional, but brought about by gross negligence.

    Helena was in fact murdered, but not by any of the three people, who were subsequently charged with the crime.

    She was murdered by the individual or individuals who brought about bringing live ammunition onto the movie set. This was no accident but a deliberate act.

    It's pretty clear that neither Baldwin, Halls or Hanna were responsible for bringing live amunition onto the movie set. Yet they were the ones who were ultimately charged.

    I see Sheriff Mendoza as a complete putz. That is putting it very mildly. His actions were completely unprofessional and uncalled for from early on.

    I do not place blame on the sheriff’s deputies who investigated the shooting. They were called to the scene and had no prior knowledge of the events that transpired.

    In a very short span of time they had to get a grasp of the events and those who were or might be involved. The questioning of the key players immediately afterward was conducted as professionally and thoroughly as it could possibly be, given the immediacy required.

    A great deal of praise should be afforded to Baldwin, Halls and Hannah, who willingly came forward and volunteered to give statements to the sheriff’s deputies, immediately following the incident. The same applies to Sara, the Property Master.

    This also goes to illustrate that if you are ever in a similar situation, do not speak with the police without having an attorney present.

    Baldwin and Hanna waived their legal rights and made statements. They were later charged with a crime. Not only that, the DA's office improperly escalated the charges to a greater felony that carried with it a possible five year prison sentence.

    A word to the wise, always keep your pie-hole closed! You can make statements anytime, preferably when your attorney is present!

    I will be taking a deeper dive into these statements and other events which I consider highly relevant.
    Last edited: May 26, 2023
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  6. SandAndGlass

    SandAndGlass Twilight Forum Resident

    I want to bring to light a few miscellaneous things that will be part of this and will soon be explained in greater detail.

    An individual I want to introduce is, Officer Troy Teske, of Bullhead City, Arizona. Troy is a law enforcement officer and a longtime friend of Thell Reed, Hannah's father.

    He is one of the good guys. He was not affiliated with the Rust production and played no direct part of anything that happened on the set of Rust.

    Thell, because he was an armorer himself and perhaps traveled a lot, did not keep live ammo with him or at his place of residence.

    Instead, his friend Troy, would keep the live ammo for him.

    Just an introduction, more on Troy soon.
  7. SandAndGlass

    SandAndGlass Twilight Forum Resident

    I was viewing the police interview with the 1st Assistant Director David Halls, immediately after the accident.

    One thing that caught my immediate attention toward the beginning of the interview.

    The sheriff’s deputies were asking David about Hannah and Sarah, being the armorer and property master. David was acknowledging them but wasn't sure of their last names.

    When asked who they worked for, he indicated the production company. They asked who was responsible for them? After some thought, he indicated that would be him.

    It was like he hadn't given it any thought previously. Which struck me as odd?

    As the interview went on, I could see that David was well aware of some aspects and others, no so much.

    Later in the interview, I began to understand more. He had been asked questions about the prop truck and how the guns were kept.

    He explained that in being on movie sets for thirty years, he was never inside of a prop truck.

    A western cowboy movie is fairly simple and straightforward. The main difference might be having horses on set.

    Modern, more complex movies that have an abundance of practical effects on set, have companies that specialize in managing these effects, water, fire, explosions, things like that.

    These are things that take specifically trained personnel to manage and execute. They would advise the Assistant Director of what he needs to be aware of so he can present these things to the crew during their safety meetings.

    Movie production is very compartmentalized. They have specific people who handle very specific jobs. Most of these people are hired and managed by the production department.

    In a separate interview, Alec Baldwin even commented that he wasn't really aware of an armorer's position. He said, that in forty years on movie sets, The prop department would bring him his gun and give him any information he needed.
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  8. Vidiot

    Vidiot Now in 4K HDR!

    Hollywood, USA
  9. StingRay5

    StingRay5 Important Impresario

    If true, that must have been one hell of a hangover. I don't think I've ever been so hung over (or so drunk) that I wouldn't notice the difference between blanks and live ammo while loading a gun. But I'm not much of a drinker. I don't think we have enough information to evaluate this accusation.
    Matthew Tate likes this.
  10. Vidiot

    Vidiot Now in 4K HDR!

    Hollywood, USA
    I tell ya, it's hard enough to work on a low-budget movie for 12-13-14 hours a day when you DON'T have a hangover. I can't imagine what these idiots were thinking...

    More at this link:

    ‘Rust’ Prosecutors Say Armorer Likely Hung Over On Set The Day Of Fatal Shooting – Deadline
    Matthew Tate likes this.
  11. Crack To The Egg

    Crack To The Egg Forum Resident

    After reading the article, it sounds like the prosecutor speculating based on the armorer drinking and smoking weed after work. No confirmation from anyone that she was hung-over.
  12. SandAndGlass

    SandAndGlass Twilight Forum Resident

    From the CNN article:

    “The prosecution has so mishandled this case and the case is so weak that they are now resorting to character assassination tactics to further taint the jury pool,” Jason Bowles, an attorney for Gutierrez Reed, said in a statement to CNN about the Friday filing. “This investigation and prosecution has not been about seeking Justice; for them it’s been about finding a convenient scapegoat,” Bowles said.

    A comment from the Deadline article:

    "How do you prove a hangover? “Likely” doesn’t cut it in court. If this is the prosecution’s inference it will not pass a simple objection on foundation."

    This has been nothing short of a witch hunt from the outset.

    This is character aspiration, nothing less.

    I wonder how many individuals in U.S. history have been charged with crimes, who may have been drinking the previous day of the incident?

    Not talking about someone who has verified alcohol in their bloodstream (in excess of legal levels).

    For example, in order to be criminally charged with alcohol related vehicular manslaughter, it has to be proven that alcohol was present in the blood, in excess of legal limits, at the time of the incident.

    A "witness" saying they saw the accused drinking at a bar is not good enough.

    Now we are interjecting contrived accusations that Hanna is guilty of a criminal act because she had a hangover.

    I am not aware of any law that governs or addresses hangovers? What if the accused was inpared because of not getting a good night's sleep? Or perhaps whose thoughts were distracted because of other events?
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  13. SandAndGlass

    SandAndGlass Twilight Forum Resident

    Consider that the gun was loaded by Hannah in the morning and was used on-set. The gun was returned to Hanna, who locked it in a safe during lunch break.

    During this time, Hannah was off of the set, back at base camp, having lunch.

    After returning, Hannah cleaned one one problem cylinder and then loaded a sixth cartridge into the gun.

    The gun was subsequently derived to 1st Assistant Director, David Halls.

    After loading the initial five cartridges into the revolver in the morning, Hanna was not in possession of the firearm.

    During lunch, it was locked in a safe that other individuals had the combination to.

    Hannah Gutierrez-Reed clearly was not in possession or control of the gun during the day. Nor was she the last person to handle the gun before it was discharged by Baldwin.

    I would be curious to know, how the prosecution would conclusively prove that she was the one that loaded the live round into a chamber?
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  14. Carl Swanson

    Carl Swanson Senior Member

    The jury can make a presumption based on behavior patterns. If the subject was routinely drinking and smoking cannabis at night, they were probably not at their best in the morning.

    Live rounds were found in her fanny pack.
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  15. in_the_fog

    in_the_fog Forum Resident

    Who knows. I made a post about it, linking to a NY Times article or similar publication (others might have tried to start a thread about it as well)
    seacliffe301 likes this.
  16. DigMyGroove

    DigMyGroove Forum Resident

    Before a film begins shooting there’s a production meeting with all department heads present along with many serving secondary and tertiary roles in those departments. The meeting follows the simple dated shooting schedule (aka the one-liner) along with a more detailed shooting schedule document which includes mention of all props, vfx, mechanical fx, etc. needed for each scene. These schedules are prepared by the Assistant Director and Second Assistant Director, so they should be familiar with everything needed on a particular day of shooting.

    The Production Dept. is the office staff including the secretary and production assistants, all working under the production supervisor and unit production manager. All of the other crafts are their own departments.

    As far as the AD on Rust goes, I’ve had a few people who had worked with him tell me he wasn’t good at the job and that they were not shocked to learn it was he who was on Rust when this tragedy occurred. As far as responsibility for the gun goes, in the end it is Miss Reed’s. Lets hope all the facts come out and justice is properly served without prejudice.
  17. in_the_fog

    in_the_fog Forum Resident


    I is not advisable to sit on an internet forum and engage in that kind of slander.

    What is wrong with you?
  18. StingRay5

    StingRay5 Important Impresario

    It's also not advisable to sit on an internet forum and throw around legal terms you don't understand. Since the statements were written, not spoken, it would be libel, not slander. But I don't see anything libelous about the statement; it's a report of other people's opinions, not an allegation of facts. Whether the gorts think it's appropriate for this forum is up to them, but that's another matter.
  19. DigMyGroove

    DigMyGroove Forum Resident

    Slander? What I wrote about the First AD is not my opinion of this person, but my relaying spoken comments of people who had personal experience working with him. In addition, his poor track record on set safety was mentioned in several news articles following the on-set shooting.

    As far as the firearms are concerned I have spoken with Prop Masters who gave been definitive with me about the chain of responsibility regarding firearms on set which is with them alone or with them in conjunction with the armorer. If there was another party that contributed to the cause of this tragedy I certainly hope that is comes to light and that’s factored in at trial.

    Obviously there was a horrible screw up regarding the gun on set. From everything I’ve read the production was poorly run. Ultimately the full truth if what occurred will be known and hopefully nothing like this event will ever happen again.

    I would urge you or anyone to read about the tragic camera crew member death on the film about Greg Allman, Midnight Rider in Georgia a few years back. There’s great detail regarding set safety and the responsibility of the First AD. The bottom line is the person in that position has that duty out upon them. Their carrying out that responsibility correctly is something the entire crew depends on.
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2023
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  20. StingRay5

    StingRay5 Important Impresario

    In some cases, I believe repeating other people's libelous comments can be libelous in itself, but in this case it doesn't matter since libel has to involve assertions of fact, not opinions like "He's not good at his job" or "I'm not surprised something bad happened on a project he was working on".
  21. in_the_fog

    in_the_fog Forum Resident


    The poster is referring to a conversation he supposedly had with people with inside knowledge about the character in question. And despite the fact that I was quoting the whole post, you were immediately able to spot the part I was objecting to, so your snide remark doesn’t add anything really.

    For all we know, the poster might be on Baldwin’s payroll, or trying to settle an old score. Or maybe the poster is just outright lying? Who can tell?

    It is an ongoing and very serious court case, with the potential of ruining lives, no matter the outcome. And if the poster is not willing to provide names, he should stay silent in my humble opinion
  22. SandAndGlass

    SandAndGlass Twilight Forum Resident

    Making an assumption of how someone might feel or be functioning is not admissible as evidence of anything.

    No, they were not!

    On page #14, I specifically provided exactly where the live ammunition was located, as noted by the Sheriff’s department and confirmed by the F.B.I.

    "Items 1, 2 & 3 (in order) are "1" the bullet recovered from Joel Souza, "2" the 1873 Colt SAA .45 caliber gun that discharged the bullet and "3" the empty cartridge that the bullet was fired from. At this point, the empty cartridge had be removed from the gun and placed on the cart.

    All of the items that relate to live rounds from the set are bolded.

    Item 1 Bullet from Joel Souza (1B4, E6842164; SFSO Item #25)

    Item 2 Revolver (1B1, E6842161; SFSO Item #1)

    Item 3 Cartridge case from top of cart (1B3, E6842163; SFSO Item #3)

    Items 4-7 are live rounds.

    All "Items" have been marked with the location where they were found.

    Item 4 Cartridge from top of cart (1B5, E6842165; SFSO Item #26)

    Item 5 Cartridge from top of cart (1B5, E6842165; SFSO Item #26)

    Item 6 Cartridge from bandolier on top of cart (1B6, E6842166; SFSO Item #27)

    Item 7 Cartridge from holster inside building (1B7, E6842167; SFSO Item #28)

    Some of these other items I have included to show how some of this potential evidence has been marked.

    An "item" can be one single item or several items, such as a box of blank cartridges.

    In the event that an "item" contains different items, the ones that may be of interest are broken down into clearly labeled sub-items.

    Item 8 Ammunition box (1B2, E6842162; SFSO Item #2)

    Item 9 Tray from Item 8 Ammunition box (1B2, E6842162; SFSO Item #2)

    Item 10 Cartridges from Item 9 Tray (1B2, E6842162; SFSO Item #2)

    Item 11 Ammunition box (1B2, E6842162; SFSO Item #2)

    Item 12 Tray from Item 11 Ammunition box (1B2, E6842162; SFSO Item #2)

    Item 13 Cartridges from Item 12 Tray (1B2, E6842162; SFSO Item #2)

    Item 13-1 Cartridge from Item 12 Tray (1B2, E6842162; SFSO Item #2)"

    According to the official record, this is where all of the live ammunition was located. None of it was in her fanny pack.
  23. SandAndGlass

    SandAndGlass Twilight Forum Resident

    That is a big stretch... Noting your other statements, which I concur with.

    That is correct, the Armorer works under the Property Master, who is ultimately responsible for the actions of the Armorer.

    There is a limit to which you can hold an inexperienced armorer responsible for an incident that was caused by many deficient aspects of the production.

    This is the conclusion of the New Mexico Safety Commission, who did not find fault with the Armorer, but did find fault with the other personnel higher up in the production.

    Hanna was not a union trade armorer and as such could not be held to union standards. The production hired Hanna with full knowledge and awareness of her limited experience. Hannah was not certified of anything.

    The safety commission found that the production itself prohibited her doing her job in a correct industry standard way.

    Those who occupy the higher rungs of the ladder are responsible for the actions of those below them.

    Being in charge, means that you are the responsible party.

    As you point out, David Halls was ultimately officially the individual charged with safety on the set.

    It was David Halls who had taken possession of the firearm. It was David Halls who had the responsibility but failed to check the weapon.

    This would be along with the Property Master, who has a greater deal of responsibility than someone off of the street, like Hannah.

    And let's not forget the Production Supervisor who has the authority to hire and fire those on the staff, like Hannah...
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  24. Carl Swanson

    Carl Swanson Senior Member

    Jury deliberations are not evidence. The evidence will be the testimony of other staff who witnessed her behavior.

    Jurors in deliberation most certainly CAN use their own judgement to make assumptions based on the evidence.
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2023
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  25. Carl Swanson

    Carl Swanson Senior Member

    Me: "Live rounds were found in her fanny pack."

    You: "No, they were not!"

    L.A. Times, Meg James, June 15: "In the filing, Morrissey (prosecutor) wrote that the collapse* of the gun did not diminish the fact that Gutierrez Reed had loaded it with at least one live bullet. Sheriff's deputies also found other live bullets had been co-mingled with 'dummies' in Gutierrez Reed's fanny pack, where she kept the ammunition for guns in the western."

    * After modification by Gutierrez-Reed.
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