Actor Alec Baldwin played Russian roulette with a loaded gun without checking it on the set of the movie Rust, alleged a lawsuit filed on Wednesday in connection with the death of a cinematographer, The Guardian reported.
Cinematographer Halyna Hutchins had died last month when Baldwin shot a prop gun while working on the movie in New Mexico. The film’s director, Joel Suza, was injured.
Baldwin had been given a prop gun by an assistant director who said it was “safe to use”, according to court records. The assistant director did not know it was loaded.
Mamie Mitchell, the movie’s script supervisor, who has filed a lawsuit against Baldwin and other film producers, said that she was standing just over a metre away from the actor when he fired the shot.
Mitchell said she suffered “serious physical trauma, shock and injury and extreme mental pain” as a consequence, according to The Guardian.
“Mr Baldwin chose to play Russian roulette with a loaded gun without checking it and without having the armorer do so,” the lawsuit said. “His behavior and that of the producers …were intentional acts and/or omissions, without any just cause or excuse and with utter disregard of the consequences.”
Mitchell also said the movie’s script did not demand that Baldwin fire the gun.
“Alec Baldwin, intentionally, without just cause or excuse, cocked and fired the loaded gun even though the upcoming scene to be filmed did not call for the cocking and firing of the firearm,” Mitchell alleged.
This is the second lawsuit to be filed in connection with the fatal shooting on the movie set.
The first suit, filed by the movie’s chief lighting technician Serge Svetnoy last week, had accused Baldwin and others of negligence.
Svetnoy claimed that the actor, assistant director Dave Halls and armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed did not follow industry practice on the handling of weapons and “allowed a revolver loaded with live ammunition to be pointed at living persons”.
The technician added in the lawsuit, “Simply put, there was no reason for a live bullet to be placed in that .45 Colt revolver or to be present anywhere on the ‘Rust’ set.”
The case is under investigation. So far, no criminal charges have been filed against anyone, according to the BBC.