Alec Baldwin: Footage released of calls made by Rust actor in police interview room after shooting | Ents & Arts News
Alec Baldwin can be heard saying in a phone call that he doesn’t “want to be a public person” anymore after being left alone in a police interview room in the aftermath of the fatal shooting on the set of his western film Rust.
Footage of the star’s interview with officers has been published by the Santa Fe County Sheriff’s office, along with crime scene photos and other files related to the investigation into the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.
Ms Hutchins was killed on the Rust set in October 2021, when a prop gun held by star and producer Baldwin was discharged during a rehearsal.
In newly released footage from the actor’s police interview, conducted just a few hours after the shooting, he can be seen being shown into the interview room and then making phone calls while waiting for officers to return and begin their questioning.
What did Alec Baldwin say in the calls?
He speaks to two women in the calls – it is not clear if one is his wife, Hilaria, who is pregnant with their seventh child.
In the first call, Baldwin can be heard saying he is at the police station and asking how his children are before saying: “What I am is someone who… I don’t want to do this whole thing anymore, I don’t. I don’t want to be a public person.
“And you know, I’m the one holding the gun in my hand and everybody was supposed to have taken care of… They always hand me a cold gun.”
The terms “cold” or “clean” for a gun on a film set mean it supposedly contains no live rounds.
In the second call, Baldwin can be heard asking a woman “where are the kids?” and is told they are sleeping.
The woman asks if “we should be staying away from the vultures here?”, possibly referring to paparazzi or press.
“Are they outside?” Baldwin asks. “No, but I imagine they will be, at some point they’re going to find out,” the woman replies.
Baldwin later says: “You have no idea how unbelievable this is and how strange this is.”
The woman then apologises to the actor for what he’s going through and says she hopes “everyone is okay”.
Police officers can be seen entering the room shortly after the calls and the interview begins.
‘I’ve never seen this before’
During the interview, Baldwin tells the officers: “We’ve done this for two weeks and we did it the right way every day. Every day.”
He later says: “I’ve been doing this… I shot enough guns in my day in movies, I’ve never seen this before.”
As well as Baldwin’s police interview, footage of the star practising drawing his revolver, reportedly on the same day as the fatal shooting, was released as part of the investigative files.
Other footage shows director Joel Souza, who was injured in the incident, speaking to officers in the hospital and asking about Ms Hutchins’ wellbeing.
Souza says he heard “a very loud bang” and describes the feeling of “being kicked in the shoulder”.
Other clips show officers arriving on the set of the film to conduct interviews with production crew members.
What is happening with the investigation?
Santa Fe County Sheriff Adan Mendoza said various components of the investigation “remain outstanding”, including FBI firearm and ballistic forensics as well as analysis of Baldwin’s phone data.
It comes after a report into the shooting said Ms Hutchins’ death was “avoidable” and concluded management “knew that firearm safety procedures were not being followed” and “demonstrated plain indifference to employee safety by failing to review work practices and take corrective action”.
Rust Movie Productions was fined $136,793 (£104,810), the maximum allowable by state law in New Mexico, following a six-month investigation by the state’s environment department.
Criminal charges could also still be brought.
Baldwin’s lawyers say the report “exonerates” the actor as it showed he had “no authority over the matters that were the subject of the bureau’s findings of violations”.
The actor continues to fight a number of lawsuits stemming from the incident. Cases are being brought by script supervisor Mamie Mitchell and head of lighting Serge Svetnoy, as well as Ms Hutchins’ family.