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Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

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Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

Old 01-21-24, 10:51 PM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

Originally Posted by Decker
Yeah both parties can look to score political points. I still think it's a terrible miscarriage of justice to file manslaughter charges on an actor for using a prop gun, that he was told by his gun wrangler was unloaded, as a prop gun, in the process of doing his job. It's insane to me.
This is a workplace accident, plain and simple. If you need to charge anyone, charge the person who was criminally negligent here - the gun wrangler.
I'm amazed that it seems like she hasn't received much attention at all. I mean of course Alec is the big time star here but based on what people were saying it seemed like the gun wrangler was pretty incompetent at her job. Where is her justice?
Old 01-21-24, 11:09 PM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

Originally Posted by PerryD
She withdrew from involvement in the case last year, and now Baldwin's prosecution is the purview of two Special Prosecutors. One is named Kari Morrissey.

https://m.facebook.com/story.php/?id...65007525495592
Old 01-21-24, 11:20 PM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

^Whatever that Facebook link was, it's no longer available.
Old 01-22-24, 02:10 AM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

Originally Posted by andicus
^Whatever that Facebook link was, it's no longer available.
Worked for me. Maybe it got fixed.
Old 01-22-24, 03:21 AM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

Hm. Maybe it's a Canada thing.

I get this:


Old 01-22-24, 09:04 AM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

Originally Posted by Count Dooku
She withdrew from involvement in the case last year, and now Baldwin's prosecution is the purview of two Special Prosecutors. One is named Kari Morrissey.

https://m.facebook.com/story.php/?id...65007525495592
Sounds like they work for the Democratic party prosecutor. So you are suggesting that she appointed a couple Trump supporting prosecutors to look unbiased?
The two new faces leading the prosecution against Baldwin and Gutierrez-Reed are private attorneys Kari T. Morrissey and Jason J. Lewis. They were chosen by the First Judicial District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies.
Old 01-22-24, 10:24 AM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

Originally Posted by PerryD
Sounds like they work for the Democratic party prosecutor. So you are suggesting that she appointed a couple Trump supporting prosecutors to look unbiased?
Well, IDK how it works in NM, but usually appointed special prosecutors don't "work for" the person who appointed them. The point is for them to be independent.

This decision to seek a new indictment came from the special prosecutors. IDK what their motivations are. If they are not political motivations to go after Baldwin, then it is a mystery, because I just keep seeing opinions that this is ridiculous.
Old 01-22-24, 10:58 AM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

Democrat or Republican, this is just a perfect opportunity for a couple of nobody special prosecutors to name a name for themselves on a National level. I don’t know if this is so much about “Justice” as it is about “Career Advancement”.

That being said, it also sounds like this came down as a grand jury indictment and the prosecutors are just going along with it. Considering grand juries seem to be filled with the dumbest people, I don’t imagine this will result in any type of conviction for Baldwin.
Old 01-22-24, 11:10 AM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

Originally Posted by Count Dooku
Well, IDK how it works in NM, but usually appointed special prosecutors don't "work for" the person who appointed them. The point is for them to be independent.

This decision to seek a new indictment came from the special prosecutors. IDK what their motivations are. If they are not political motivations to go after Baldwin, then it is a mystery, because I just keep seeing opinions that this is ridiculous.
That's because it is. This NYT article (through Yahoo News, not behind paywall) sums it up nicely :

The Legal Question at the Center of the Alec Baldwin Criminal Case


I especially liked this passage :
Legal experts were divided on the merits of reviving the case, noting that traditional gun safety rules — such as never pointing a functional gun toward someone — do not always apply on film sets, and that investigators found he had been assured by the film’s safety crew that the gun did not contain live ammunition.

The notion that you never point a gun at someone would sort of undo Westerns for the past 100 years,” said Nancy Gertner, a retired federal judge.
That, and the statement from SAG
After the original criminal case was brought against Baldwin last year, the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, the union representing film and TV actors, opposed the prosecutors’ contention that actors were responsible for ensuring that the guns they were handed on set were safe to handle, saying, “an actor’s job is not to be a firearms or weapons expert.”
Old 01-22-24, 01:02 PM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

From NMS 30-2-3:
Involuntary manslaughter consists of manslaughter committed in the commission of an unlawful act not amounting to felony, or in the commission of a lawful act which might produce death in an unlawful manner or without due caution and circumspection.


And a couple things I've read recently regarding safety standards for scenes involving guns (Source):

1) The actor is only supposed to take possession of a gun from the armorer, not a third party.
-The above should not happen until the actor has had required training regarding that specific firearm.
-The armorer should also demonstrate to the actor that the gun is indeed safe.

2) Even in rehearsals, the trigger should not be pulled.

Whether or not Baldwin had the training for that gun, I don't know. But the other three items were clearly not followed and Baldwin at least shares some blame, both as the actor and as producer. I can certainly see an argument that Baldwin (along with David Halls and Hannah Gutierrez) demonstrated enough negligence by ignoring these standards that are written specifically to prevent these types of incidents to qualify as acting "without due caution".

Last edited by John Galt; 01-22-24 at 01:15 PM.
Old 01-22-24, 01:51 PM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

Baldwin at least shares some blame, both as the actor and as producer.
I've heard this argument made by the NM Prosecutors in the past and it's total garbage. You can't claim that he has some criminal negligence as a named producer and as the actor without charging the other producers. You're charging him because he was the actor holding the gun.
Now sure he shares some civil liability as an actor and as a producer. But criminally? Nope, not if the other producers don't.
Old 01-22-24, 01:58 PM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

I'd be fine if the other producers got charged. It sounds like this set was a shitshow.
Old 01-22-24, 02:12 PM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

Originally Posted by GoldenJCJ
Democrat or Republican, this is just a perfect opportunity for a couple of nobody special prosecutors to name a name for themselves on a National level. I don’t know if this is so much about “Justice” as it is about “Career Advancement”.

That being said, it also sounds like this came down as a grand jury indictment and the prosecutors are just going along with it. Considering grand juries seem to be filled with the dumbest people, I don’t imagine this will result in any type of conviction for Baldwin.
Based on my extensive legal background of watch Law and Order, the prosecutors have to take the case to the grand jury and ask for an indictment.

If it's not politically motivated, then it must just be for publicity. I know there are people here who dislike Baldwin, but WTF are those NM people trying to put this guy through?
Old 01-22-24, 02:15 PM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

Originally Posted by John Galt
And a couple things I've read recently regarding safety standards for scenes involving guns (Source):

1) The actor is only supposed to take possession of a gun from the armorer, not a third party.
-The above should not happen until the actor has had required training regarding that specific firearm.
-The armorer should also demonstrate to the actor that the gun is indeed safe.

2) Even in rehearsals, the trigger should not be pulled.

Whether or not Baldwin had the training for that gun, I don't know. But the other three items were clearly not followed and Baldwin at least shares some blame, both as the actor and as producer. I can certainly see an argument that Baldwin (along with David Halls and Hannah Gutierrez) demonstrated enough negligence by ignoring these standards that are written specifically to prevent these types of incidents to qualify as acting "without due caution".
You have to look at the old version of Safety Bulletin #1 (that covers firearms) that was current at the time the Rust accident happened (the current, 2023 version of the bulletin has been substantially revised):
https://web.archive.org/web/20211022...01FIREARMS.pdf

You'll see that the responsibility for the firearms lies with the Prop Master OR, in their absence, the weapons handler and/or other appropriate personnel determined by the locality or the needs of the production. On that day, the armorer was not present on-set, so the first AD, David Halls, took on that responsibility.

So, as an actor, Alec Baldwin was fine taking that gun from the first AD, as that was the appropriate personnel designated by the production that day, in the absence of the armorer.

Regarding the training, Baldwin did have the training, but it was inadequate. If you look in Safety Bulletin #1: "If there are any questions as to the competency of the person who will use the firearm, the Property Master [...] shall determine if additional training is required." So, again, it is the Prop Master's ultimate responsibility to make sure the safety training has been completed properly.

Regarding demonstrating that the gun is safe, the standard in the bulletin is "ensuring that any actor who is required to stand near the line of fire be allowed to witness the loading of the firearms." So, they're not required to demonstrate it. They just have to make it available, should the actor wish to witness it themselves.

Regarding the trigger, there is nothing in there that says that trigger should not be pulled in rehearsals. It just says, don't put your finger on the trigger until you're ready to shoot.

So, as you read through that document, you'll notice that the Prop Master is responsible for nearly EVERYTHING. They're responsible for making sure training has been completed properly. They're responsible for the control and distribution of all firearms on the set. They're responsible for checking all firearms before each use. They're responsible for the notification to all those present including the Sound Mixer, First Assistant Director and/or Stage Manager prior to any firing of "BLANK AMMUNITION."

The only thing the actor is responsible for is for getting safety training and following the directions of the director and prop master. So, were Alec Baldwin's actions deficient or negligent? He didn't get enough safety training, but again that's the Prop Master's responsibility to ensure that's been done. Would Baldwin's safety training have prevented the accident?

Well, I see a couple problems here. The prosecutor is going to have to prove (beyond a reasonable doubt) that Baldwin pulled the trigger. He has consistently claimed that he did not. It's the prosecutor's burden. Even if they can prove he pulled the trigger intentionally, there's the problem that he did not expect a live round to be in there. He was handed the gun by the first AD who loudly announced "COLD GUN". It is not the actor's responsibility to load the weapon or inspect the weapon to double-check the ammunition type. The Prop Master is responsible for "the safe handling, use, and safekeeping, and familiarity with the "BLANK AMMUNITION" to be utilized". Any actor handed a gun announced as a "COLD GUN" would not reasonably expect a live bullet to emerge even if they pulled the trigger.

The armorer and the first AD bear the brunt of the responsibility, and they were both charged accordingly (actually, I think the AD got off light, with his plea bargain). Baldwin may or may not have pulled the trigger. In accordance with the safety training, he probably should not have had his finger anywhere near the trigger, unless he was instructed to. But even if he did, he had no reasonable expectation that he would fire a live bullet at someone. Given all that, I don't see how he can be held responsible for it.

Last edited by TheBang; 01-22-24 at 02:47 PM.
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Old 01-22-24, 03:38 PM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

I was expecting a couple tweaks, but those are some major changes between April and December. Is there a copy floating around from the way they were written at the time of the shooting?
Old 01-24-24, 02:49 AM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

Originally Posted by John Galt
I was expecting a couple tweaks, but those are some major changes between April and December. Is there a copy floating around from the way they were written at the time of the shooting?
The copy I linked is the version of the bulletin that was in force at the time that the shooting happened in October 2021. As you can see, it hadn't been revised since April 2003 (I think you mistook that for 2023). Obviously, there were major changes made to it in the wake of the Rust accident.

One of the most notable changes I noticed is that responsibility for many of the tasks can no longer be delegated from the Prop Master to random personnel designated by the production. Also, responsibility for ensuring that safety training is properly completed is now the responsibility of the production (in consultation with the Prop Master), rather than solely the Prop Master's responsibility.
Old 01-24-24, 05:04 AM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

I have to wonder if this incident and the legal jeopardy Baldwin is in (as both the actor holding the gun and a producer) will lead to a steep decline in the use of real guns in films and a move toward either fake guns or real guns modified so they can't fire actual bullets.
Old 01-24-24, 07:26 PM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

Originally Posted by Josh-da-man
I have to wonder if this incident and the legal jeopardy Baldwin is in (as both the actor holding the gun and a producer) will lead to a steep decline in the use of real guns in films and a move toward either fake guns or real guns modified so they can't fire actual bullets.
It's possible, but also possible that people will look at the extreme rarity of dangerous incidents occurring when real guns are used, and say that as long as the rules are being followed, it's fine.
Old 01-25-24, 07:38 PM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

SAG-AFTRA issued a statement in support of Baldwin, making basically the same points we’ve been discussing above.

They cite the safety bulletin and state that the actor is not responsible for checking any firearm. That is the responsibility of the armorer and the production.
https://www.usatoday.com/story/enter...e/72359048007/
Old 01-26-24, 02:14 PM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

Originally Posted by TheBang
SAG-AFTRA issued a statement in support of Baldwin, making basically the same points we’ve been discussing above.

They cite the safety bulletin and state that the actor is not responsible for checking any firearm. That is the responsibility of the armorer and the production.
https://www.usatoday.com/story/enter...e/72359048007/
The problem Alec Baldwin has, is that he says he never fired the weapon (i.e., the trigger was never pulled). I think that's why he was indicted because it's sort of impossible to not fire a weapon without the trigger pulled, unless there was a malfunction...which needs to be proven.

If Baldwin said, "Yes, I pulled the trigger, but I was told there were no live rounds in it," I really doubt the case would have gone this far.

Alec Baldwin was the Producer of Rust, so he's not just a typical actor in the film. As a Producer, it might be argued he had a higher duty to secure the safety of the set.

Regardless of who was responsible for what, or how much or to what degree, the facts are...the gun fired a live round into another person's face, but was not intentional. By definition, that's manslaughter. So, depending on the jury, it could go that way or more sympathetic to Baldwin's defense.

I will say, any gun owner or user has (or should have) engrained into their soul, checking a weapon themselves and NOT relying on ANYONE telling them it's empty (especially when using the thing and pointing it another person).

After the original criminal case was brought against Mr. Baldwin last year, SAG-AFTRA, the union representing film and TV actors, opposed the prosecutors’ contention that actors were responsible for ensuring that the guns they were handed on set were safe to handle, saying, “an actor’s job is not to be a firearms or weapons expert.”
I suppose that could be true about a typical actor on the set, SAG-AFTRA, but my question to your union, is since Alec Baldwin was the PRODUCER of the film...should he not have a higher standard of making sure the set was safe? Several employees were documented as walking off the set due to Baldwin's antics and behaviors, which then led to to hiring non-union employees. Did this not make the set less safe for everyone. Was this not part of Alec Baldwin's responsibility as Producer?

The very reason why Mr. Baldwin was credited and allowed to be a Producer...was so he had more control over the film's direction. Otherwise...why be a Producer if it just means you're only an actor? True, we all know these titles can be something to add to that vanity chest, and yes, there were other producers involved in the film, however, how many producers were on the scene when the incident happened, and second, was Baldwin in control of the scene leading up to the incident or did Mr. Baldwin believe he was in control leading up the incident? Should producers (even if the title can be a vanity tag for many) be aware of the misdirections the set could be going and should that producer attempt to rectify those misdirections?

Last edited by DVD Polizei; 01-26-24 at 02:30 PM.
Old 01-26-24, 03:52 PM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

Originally Posted by DVD Polizei
The problem Alec Baldwin has, is that he says he never fired the weapon (i.e., the trigger was never pulled). I think that's why he was indicted because it's sort of impossible to not fire a weapon without the trigger pulled, unless there was a malfunction...which needs to be proven.

If Baldwin said, "Yes, I pulled the trigger, but I was told there were no live rounds in it," I really doubt the case would have gone this far.

Alec Baldwin was the Producer of Rust, so he's not just a typical actor in the film. As a Producer, it might be argued he had a higher duty to secure the safety of the set.

Regardless of who was responsible for what, or how much or to what degree, the facts are...the gun fired a live round into another person's face, but was not intentional. By definition, that's manslaughter. So, depending on the jury, it could go that way or more sympathetic to Baldwin's defense.

I will say, any gun owner or user has (or should have) engrained into their soul, checking a weapon themselves and NOT relying on ANYONE telling them it's empty (especially when using the thing and pointing it another person).



I suppose that could be true about a typical actor on the set, SAG-AFTRA, but my question to your union, is since Alec Baldwin was the PRODUCER of the film...should he not have a higher standard of making sure the set was safe? Several employees were documented as walking off the set due to Baldwin's antics and behaviors, which then led to to hiring non-union employees. Did this not make the set less safe for everyone. Was this not part of Alec Baldwin's responsibility as Producer?

The very reason why Mr. Baldwin was credited and allowed to be a Producer...was so he had more control over the film's direction. Otherwise...why be a Producer if it just means you're only an actor? True, we all know these titles can be something to add to that vanity chest, and yes, there were other producers involved in the film, however, how many producers were on the scene when the incident happened, and second, was Baldwin in control of the scene leading up to the incident or did Mr. Baldwin believe he was in control leading up the incident? Should producers (even if the title can be a vanity tag for many) be aware of the misdirections the set could be going and should that producer attempt to rectify those misdirections?

If anyone should have been charged it should have been the person with DIRECT responsibility for the safety of the guns on set. That wasn't Alec Baldwin. Regardless of whether he pulled the trigger the gun was supposed to be safe. Triggers are pulled all the time on movie sets, but the guns are safe so no one gets hurt. In this case the person responsible for the gun being safe failed in their job functions, so they should be charged, not Alec Baldwin.

Alec Baldwin should carry some legal/financial liability since he was a co-producer, but he isn't criminally liable. He can't be. He wasn't directly responsible for the safety of that gun.
Old 01-26-24, 03:53 PM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

The idea that actors should be checking each round of a prop gun they were handed is insane to me. The whole point in having armorers and safety teams on-set is so the actors AREN'T dealing with that.

The advice of treating every gun like it's loaded and ready to fire is for general firearm ownership. Film sets are completely different environments where things that people would be arrested for doing (wrecking cars, jumping off buildings, beating people up) are their literal jobs instead. No actor should be required to be a gun safety expert when gun safety experts are being paid for that expertise.

I've used firearms in stage shows before. I have been handed "live" guns with blanks. I didn't point it directly at anyone because that's not required of the scenes, but I also didn't unload it and check the blanks to make sure they were blanks either. It was given to me by the person responsible for doing that. And I fired the guns in the general direction of fellow actors too, so a live round could have easily done damage. .
Old 01-26-24, 04:49 PM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

That's why I wondered if this is ultimately a financial liability issue.

If I own a business, follow OSHA rules, and there is a forklift accident and someone loses a limb or their life, I'm not sure what the rules are for criminal liability.

I don't foresee the possibility of Baldwin or anyone else being criminally liable for anything. It was a tragic accident. I'd imagine these cases happen on the time, similar to what I posted above. I think this is some kind of tradition or formality, whether it be financial or vetting process. By "vetting", I mean to make sure there was no maleficence and it was an accident.
Old 01-27-24, 03:00 AM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

Originally Posted by Troy Stiffler
That's why I wondered if this is ultimately a financial liability issue.<br /><br />If I own a business, follow OSHA rules, and there is a forklift accident and someone loses a limb or their life, I'm not sure what the rules are for criminal liability.<br /><br />I don't foresee the possibility of Baldwin or anyone else being criminally liable for anything. It was a tragic accident. I'd imagine these cases happen on the time, similar to what I posted above.<strong> I think this is some kind of tradition or formality, whether it be financial or vetting process. By "vetting", I mean to make sure there was no maleficence and it was an accident.</strong>
Nope. The District Attorney couldn't give two shits about any civil liability. They absolutely will not prosecute just to make things clearer or easier for a civil suit. The criteria they're supposed to use is having a belief that a crime was committed and that they have the evidence to prove it and get a conviction. They should damned well know that they can't prove that Baldwin was criminally responsible for this tragedy, so prosecuting it is absurd. Even if a Grand Jury recommended prosecuting the District Attorney can still refuse to file charges and refuse to take the case to trial if he or she does not believe the evidence is there to convict. They have to have a good faith belief that they can get a conviction. IF this D.A. really thinks they've got enough for a conviction here (and that they've charged the right person) then that D.A. is utterly incompetent.

Last edited by B5Erik; 01-28-24 at 01:28 AM.
Old 01-27-24, 08:34 PM
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Re: Alec Baldwin accidentally kills DP with prop gun, director shot as well

Originally Posted by DVD Polizei
The problem Alec Baldwin has, is that he says he never fired the weapon (i.e., the trigger was never pulled). I think that's why he was indicted because it's sort of impossible to not fire a weapon without the trigger pulled, unless there was a malfunction...which needs to be proven.
No, you've got that backwards. As a defendant, he doesn't need to prove there was a malfunction. It's the state's burden to prove that he pulled the trigger. He just needs to introduce enough reasonable doubt. The FBI broke the weapon when they were testing it, so that alone could introduce enough doubt about the condition of the weapon.
Originally Posted by DVD Polizei
If Baldwin said, "Yes, I pulled the trigger, but I was told there were no live rounds in it," I really doubt the case would have gone this far.
See, that's the prosecution's problem. Not only do they have to prove that he pulled the trigger, but also that he did it in a negligent or reckless fashion. On movie sets, people point guns at each other, or at the camera, and pull the trigger. The safety protocols are supposed to ensure that that is a safe action. He was instructed to point the gun at the camera. Whether or not he pulled the trigger (if the prosecution is able to prove that), he still had no reasonable belief that it would cause any harm, after being handed a "COLD GUN" by the person on the set responsible for handling that.

Originally Posted by DVD Polizei
Alec Baldwin was the Producer of Rust, so he's not just a typical actor in the film. As a Producer, it might be argued he had a higher duty to secure the safety of the set.
You could try, but Producers are not hands-on in doing the actual job that's supposed to be done on that set. In this case, handling the firearms and loading them. So, certainly, the production overall has civil liability, and that's already been settled with the family. But individual producers being criminally prosecuted for the actions of the people on the set that were hired to actually do the job? No, that's too far removed.

Originally Posted by DVD Polizei
The very reason why Mr. Baldwin was credited and allowed to be a Producer...was so he had more control over the film's direction. Otherwise...why be a Producer if it just means you're only an actor? True, we all know these titles can be something to add to that vanity chest, and yes, there were other producers involved in the film, however, how many producers were on the scene when the incident happened, and second, was Baldwin in control of the scene leading up to the incident or did Mr. Baldwin believe he was in control leading up the incident? Should producers (even if the title can be a vanity tag for many) be aware of the misdirections the set could be going and should that producer attempt to rectify those misdirections?
Producers can have differing levels of responsibility or involvement in a production. Baldwin's, it seems, was restricted to just some creative decisions. It was the line producer that hired the armorer. You can read more about the production responsibilities on that set here:
https://variety.com/2023/film/news/a...ha-1235531157/

Last edited by TheBang; 01-27-24 at 08:50 PM.

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