Remembering Cinematographer Halyna Hutchins

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Hutchins
Courtesy of Eric Chan (Flickr CC0)

Halyna Hutchins was a cinematographer who died during an accidental shooting during filming in New Mexico. On Oct. 21, 2021, actor Alec Baldwin pulled out the prop gun that misfired killing the cinematographer and injuring the director Joel Souza.

She was born in Ukraine in 1979. Hutchins grew up on a Soviet military in the Arctic Circle. She held a graduate degree in International Journalism from Kyiv National University located in Ukraine. Before she was a cinematographer she worked as an investigative journalist with British documentary productions in Europe.

In 2015, she earned a degree from the American Film Institute.

Hutchins
Courtesy of @TheSunUS (Twitter)

As a cinematographer, she worked on such hits as “Blindfire,” “Darlin’,” “The Mad Hatter,” and “Archenemy.” The film Hutchins was working on when she died was “Rust,” starring Baldwin and Jensen Ackles.

Prior to the fatal shooting, the prop gun had two separate misfires that resulted in no injuries. The prop gun was one of three on hand for use in the film. Apparently, an assistant director handed the weapon to Baldwin proclaiming it was a “cold gun.” This is a term used in filmmaking to signal the weapon is not loaded with live rounds.

According to investigators, Hutchins suffered from a gunshot wound to the chest. Crew members attempted to stop the bleeding as they waited for help to arrive. Hutchins was taken to the University of New Mexico Hospital by helicopter. At that time she was listed to be “in critical condition. Sometime after arriving, Hutchins succumbed to her wounds.

Friday morning Balwin conveyed his sorrow on Twitter.

There are no words to convey my shock and sadness regarding the tragic accident that took the life of Halyna Hutchins, a wife, mother and deeply admired colleague of ours

She is survived by her husband, Matthew Hutchins, their son, and those who loved her dearly. Her husband has asked, “the media please respect my family’s privacy as we process our grief.” He added, “We thank everyone for sharing images and stories of her life.”

Written by Sheena Robertson

Sources:

ABC News: Cinematographer Halyna Hutchins dies after prop gun fired by Alec Baldwin fires live round; by Meredith Deliso and Catherine Thorbecke

Halyna Hutchins: About

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