Washington [US], January 25 (ANI): More than two months after Mamie Mitchell, the script supervisor on ‘Rust’ filed a lawsuit against Alec Baldwin and other producers for the actor’s fatal shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchinson on the set, the defendants want a California judge to dismiss the action.
According to Deadline, the filing in response to Mamie Mitchell’s November 17, 2021 lawsuit said, “Nothing about Plaintiff’s allegations suggest that any of Defendants, including Mr Baldwin, intended the Prop Gun to be loaded with live ammunition,” responded Baldwin, Rust Movie Productions, LLC, El Dorado Pictures, Inc., Ryan Donnell Smith, Langley Allen Cheney, Thomasville Pictures, LLC, Anjul Nigam, Matthew DelPiano, and Cavalry Media, Inc., who were “erroneously sued as Calvary Media, Inc.”
“Moreover, nothing about Plaintiff’s allegations suggests any of the Defendants knew the Prop Gun contained live ammunition,” the defendants’ memorandum accompanying their demurrer added.
“The absence of such allegations of course makes sense because the Incident is apparently unprecedented in the filmmaking industry,” the document added, apparently overlooking past film set fatalities like Brandon Lee’s shooting death on 1994’s ‘The Crow’.
“Because all three of Plaintiff’s causes of action are based on allegations of negligence that resulted in a workplace accident, they should be dismissed because her exclusive remedy is New Mexico’s Workers’ Compensation Act, not a civil action filed in California State Court,” the filing added.
As the Santa Fe Sheriff’s Office continues its probe into what went terribly wrong on the Rust set on October 21 last year, Baldwin and his fellow producers’ Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP lawyers are requesting a February 24 hearing before Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Michael E. Whitaker on the move to toss out Mitchell’s case.
“Alec Baldwin should have assumed that the gun in question was loaded unless and until it was demonstrated to him or checked by him that it was not loaded,” the filing proclaimed in language echoed at a press conference Mitchell and Allred held soon after filing the suit.
“He had no right to rely upon some alleged statement by the Assistant Director that it was a ‘cold gun,'” the wide-ranging, damages-seeking complaint went on to say, referring to Assistant Director David Halls.
“Mr Baldwin cannot hide behind the Assistant Director to attempt to excuse the fact that he did not check the gun himself,” continued the filing from Mitchell, who was actually in the church location on the Bonanza Creek Ranch when Baldwin’s “quick draw” move during rehearsal killed Hutchins and injured director Joel Souza.
Having since admitted he didn’t examine the weapon properly before giving it to the actor, Halls, along with ‘Rust’ armourer Hannah Gutierrez Reed, has been at the centre of the sheriff’s investigation.
As her lawyers have floated the idea of sabotage on the production that had safety and labour issues, Gutierrez Reed launched her own legal action earlier this month against the film’s so-called armourer/mentor Seth Kenney and his Albuquerque-based company PDQ Arm and Prop.