The producers of Rust have hired a new cinematographer and plan to resume filming this spring despite the looming criminal prosecution of star and producer Alec Baldwin, who has been charged with involuntary manslaughter for the on-set killing of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, according to the Hollywood Reporter.
Rust Movie Productions will also produce a documentary about the life and work of Hutchins that will “show the brilliance and depth of Halyna’s talent while conveying what her loss has meant to her friends, colleagues and the entire film industry”, the company said in a statement to the movie industry publication.
Hutchins’s widower, Matthew Hutchins, will be an executive producer on both projects.
Hutchins died on 21 October 2021 after being struck by a live round during rehearsals for the western on a ranch near Santa Fe, New Mexico. The killing touched off calls for safety reform on film sets, as well as numerous lawsuits among producers and various crew.
Rust was expected to resume filming in January after Baldwin reached a settlement in a wrongful death lawsuit brought by Matthew Hutchins. But on 19 January, New Mexico prosecutors announced plans to charge Baldwin and the film’s armorer, Hannah Gutierrez Reed, with involuntary manslaughter. Both have denied wrongdoing. Attorneys for Baldwin have sought to reduce the severity of the charges he faces.
Baldwin will remain in the starring role, according to the report. Bianca Cline, who served as director of photography on Marcel the Shell With Shoes On, will take over as cinematographer.
Rust Media Productions and Cline did not immediately respond to queries from the Guardian.
“Though bittersweet, I am grateful that a brilliant and dedicated new production team joining former cast and crew are committed to completing what Halyna and I started,” said director Joel Souza in a statement to the Hollywood Reporter.
Souza was also injured in the shooting. “My every effort on this film will be devoted to honoring Halyna’s legacy and making her proud. It is a privilege to see this through on her behalf.”
The production will not use working firearms when it resumes, according to the report.