One person died and another was severely injured on Thursday after deputies said Alec Baldwin fired a prop gun on the set of his new movie Rust in New Mexico.
Audacy’s Gary Bryan spoke with a Los Angeles prop master named Don to get insight on how guns are used on set and other factors that may have led to the tragic incident.
“I’ve worked with several productions where we’ve handled guns and there’s some things that haven’t really been released yet publicly that might contribute to how that accident happened,” he shared.
Don explained that a prop master he works with, knew and worked with several people from the film’s crew, which have shared with him that it was allegedly a non-union crew working at the time of the incident.
“The day before, the camera department had walked off because they hadn’t been paid in three weeks,” he explains. “So we don’t know if it was really the prop master and armorer who was handling the weapons. It might have been somebody filling in, but they tried to keep on filming without the proper crew.”
Don then went on to explain what happens before a prop gun gets put on the set. “Nothing gets handed to the actor until you call ‘hot weapon’ and you have it checked by the first assistant director,” he said. “That way, everybody knows that there’s a live weapon on set.”
“Secondly, there’s minimum clearances for every type of weapon you use,” he continued. “How close can somebody be from the weapon when it’s discharged. There’s stuff that still comes out of that weapon, wads, little bits of brass, all that stuff could kill you. There’s always supposed to be a minimum distance in which anybody can be in front of that weapon.”
You can listen to the full conversation above.