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    JA, you seem to be well read on all of this. Can you speculate why they are going after Alec Baldwin as the producer and not the other producers? I read Donnell Smith was the 'day-to-day' producer. I'm wondering why he has not been charged.
    Last edited by Paul F; 01-24-2023, 09:47 AM.
    Awarded Best Clear Com Chatter, 2001, PBS Television

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      Originally posted by JAMedia View Post

      The AD and Producers I don't know.
      Well, the AD already pleaded guilty to negligent use of a deadly weapon. I think he is supposed to double-check the armorer's work by having them show him what the gun is loaded with. So, he was also responsible for making sure the gun was empty.

      For the producers -- I think that if there were a record of discussions where someone expressed doubt about the experience level of the armorer and then someone responded that they should hire her anyway because they don't have the budget to hire someone more experienced; and then there was a record of the armorer complaining about doing double-duty as the props manager, and the producers responded that they didn't have the budget to hire a dedicated props person; and then you already have complaints from the crew about the long commute times, although I don't know if the armorer complained as well -- if you have records like that, you could argue that the producers shared responsibility for the catastrophe that occurred. Or even if there were records of a complaint about the state of the armorer's secure area that the producers chose to ignore.

      Of course, if the armorer was unable to do her job properly because of set conditions, she should have walked off the job.
      www.VideoAbe.com

      "If you’re really in favor of free speech, then you’re in favor of freedom of speech for precisely the views you despise. Otherwise, you’re not in favor of free speech." - Noam Chomsky

      Comment


        Originally posted by Paul F View Post
        JA, you seem to be well read on all of this. Can you speculate why they are going after Alec Baldwin as the producer and not the other producers? I read Donnell Smith was the 'day-to-day' producer. I'm wondering why he has not been charged.
        I know about firearms and their use (outside gun clubs and ranges) and some knowedge of gun crime. I have no idea on the legalities with the Producers. If as you say (I have no idea on this part of it ) that Donnell Smith was "day-to-day" produser who ran the location then I would have thought he should bve charged as "the manager in charge" ?
        That or all the producers should be charged.
        As Baldwin was one of the lead Actors I would have thought that he was not the producer running the set?
        www.jamedia.uk

        Comment


          Originally posted by ahalpert View Post
          Well, the AD already pleaded guilty to negligent use of a deadly weapon. I think he is supposed to double-check the armorer's work by having them show him what the gun is loaded with. So, he was also responsible for making sure the gun was empty.
          That seem reasonable to me. It is part of the chain of responsibility. Though I can't see how the AD could possibley tell if the rounds were dummy or live. The silver/gold for the primers seems a biit reckless. I have said it before and will say it again there should have been no live rounds on the location. That is down to the armourer.

          Originally posted by ahalpert View Post
          For the producers -- I think that if there were a record of discussions where someone expressed doubt about the experience level of the armorer and then someone responded that they should hire her anyway because they don't have the budget to hire someone more experienced; and then there was a record of the armorer complaining about doing double-duty as the props manager, and the producers responded that they didn't have the budget to hire a dedicated props person; and then you already have complaints from the crew about the long commute times, although I don't know if the armorer complained as well -- if you have records like that, you could argue that the producers shared responsibility for the catastrophe that occurred. Or even if there were records of a complaint about the state of the armorer's secure area that the producers chose to ignore.
          That is going to be a "fun" session in court. He-said she-said etc. and I expect lost notes. and "I don't remember that conversation"

          Originally posted by ahalpert View Post
          Of course, if the armorer was unable to do her job properly because of set conditions, she should have walked off the job.
          Agreed. But then again how many of us have bent princples "a bit" because you need the job? Or it is in that gray area of "its not right but that is how the real world works...."?
          Last edited by JAMedia; 01-24-2023, 10:16 AM.
          www.jamedia.uk

          Comment


            Originally posted by JAMedia View Post

            It wasn't chaos on set but chaos in the armourers supposedly secure area.

            It will be interesting to watch the argument and counter argument in court.
            Either way I think
            The Actor is Not Guilty
            The Armourer is guilty
            The AD and Producers I don't know.
            The AD already pleaded guilty. One assumes to the reduced charges in exchange for the testimony against others.

            Comment


              And sometimes, sh!t and negligence coincide.

              https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...d-trigger.html

              • The unnamed man was found dead in the front seat of his vehicle by Sumner County sheriffs, just north of the border with Oklahoma
              • Investigators concluded that the man's dog stepped on the rifle in the back seat of the car, which then fired, killing him

              Comment


                If it happened in NM the dog would have been charged. No one is above the law not even dogs!

                Funny thing is this has happened before. https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/...r-hunt-indiana

                Comment


                  Michael Shannon weighs in on Rust. Not that his opinion matters, I just happen to agree with him, although it's interesting he doesn't feel like Baldwin followed proper procedures, including putting his finger on the trigger. Some excerpts from the interview:

                  But “Rust” is an example of a problem I see in filmmaking more and more these days. On smaller productions, independent productions, the producers keep wanting more and more for less and less...

                  The financiers say, well, Joe Blow made a movie for a million, we’re gonna give you a million, too. And you’re, like, “But I need $3 million to make it the right way.” And they say “Well, I guess you won’t do it, then.” They whittle the budget down to the bare minimum — but the one thing you can’t cut corners on is your armorer. If you have guns in your movie, that’s no place to cut corners.

                  The person on “Rust” clearly was not qualified for the job. She should not have been there...

                  If it were up to the actor to determine whether a firearm is safe or not, you wouldn’t need an armorer in the first place. Being an armorer is a hard job, a demanding job, and I have nothing but respect for them. But in this instance, it was going into the ER and finding out your doctor isn’t a real doctor.
                  When you’re rehearsing a scene with a gun in it, and you’re on set, the gun you’re given almost always is not a gun. It’s a rubber replica. Maybe a plastic one. It is not a firearm. That’s what you have during any sort of rehearsal or walk-through, right up until you’re figuring out the shot, and what your firing line will be, all of that. You shouldn’t have the actual weapon in your hand until immediately before doing the take.

                  Now, sometimes that doesn’t happen. Sometimes they’ll give you the actual gun to rehearse with a little closer to filming. But there’s a procedure for that. They open the barrel. They show you there’s nothing in there. They show you the chambers, they show the assistant director, and it’s a visual confirmation. The AD’s supposed to check it, the actor checks it and the armorer has checked it. All three of those people have to see there’s nothing in there. And then they hand it to you.

                  With “Rust,” before that gun went into his hand, (Baldwin) should have seen with his own eyes there was nothing in it.

                  Q: But not on his own initiative?

                  No. The armorer should’ve brought the gun over to him and said: Here is your firearm. It is empty. Or maybe (the gun) has decoy or dummy rounds in it; you pull the trigger, nothing happens. But you never settle for walking up to an actor and handing the gun over without showing them what’s inside of it. Ever. That was the cataclysmic event on “Rust.”

                  As an actor, if I’m handed a weapon, my finger does not go in the trigger hole at all. I learned this at a very young age as an actor. You lay your finger outside, along the barrel of the gun. You do not put your finger in the trigger hole unless you’re going for a take. If you’re holding a firearm between takes, which you shouldn’t be, you point it at the ground until somebody comes and collects it from you.

                  I’m not condemning Alec. I feel horrible for the guy. It’s a nightmare. I feel terrible for everyone on that production. But this is what happens when you lowball and cut corners and hire people that may not be qualified, and pay them next to nothing, and make the movie on the cheap. People get jobs in this business because they’re willing to work for a low enough fee. I see it all the time.

                  Since this happened, I think the armorer might become obsolete. There’s a big push now to do (all the gunfire) in post, you know, postproduction. No more live firing on set, period. So you act like you’re firing a gun when you’re not. It’s called “acting.” And it’s truly not worth dying for.
                  https://www.chicagotribune.com/enter...bnu-story.html
                  www.VideoAbe.com

                  "If you’re really in favor of free speech, then you’re in favor of freedom of speech for precisely the views you despise. Otherwise, you’re not in favor of free speech." - Noam Chomsky

                  Comment


                    Originally posted by ahalpert View Post
                    Michael Shannon weighs in on Rust. Not that his opinion matters, I just happen to agree with him, although it's interesting he doesn't feel like Baldwin followed proper procedures, including putting his finger on the trigger. Some excerpts from the interview:

                    ......SNIP......
                    I agree with that assesment. Though in some takes you do need DUMMY rounds in the gun (also the gunblets, bandoliers etc. ) There should never be live rounds on a set.

                    As for fingers on triggers.. That is "real gun" safety. On film sets you have a prop and no live ammunition on set. Often you need the character to "fire" the weapons. In many cases load and fire. So the actor has to rely on the Amourer and the person who hands them the gun, and if needed *DUMMY* ammuntion. The Actor is in no position to confirm the dummy rounds are not live. How can they? The dummy rounds for film use look as real as possible. Dummy rounds fro training in the military are very clearly dummy, you could not use them in a film.

                    Other than the Armourer it comes down to procedures for runnign the set. That is where the arguments will be. Hence the AD pleading guilty and giving evidence. That wil get messy in court as they all blame each other.



                    www.jamedia.uk

                    Comment


                      Originally posted by JAMedia View Post
                      As for fingers on triggers.. That is "real gun" safety. On film sets you have a prop and no live ammunition on set. Often you need the character to "fire" the weapons. In many cases load and fire.
                      I think that Shannon was referring specifically to rehearsals, since they were doing a rehearsal when Hutchins got shot. I'm guessing this may be a common safety measure but that it may not be formally written in a rulebook. He said: "You do not put your finger in the trigger hole unless you’re going for a take."
                      www.VideoAbe.com

                      "If you’re really in favor of free speech, then you’re in favor of freedom of speech for precisely the views you despise. Otherwise, you’re not in favor of free speech." - Noam Chomsky

                      Comment


                        The person on “Rust” clearly was not qualified for the job. She should not have been there...
                        Which is the producers fault. It's like that old line from "Married ... with Children" - a chimp shoots someone with the gun, you don't blame the chimp, you blame the idiot who gave him the gun.

                        Comment


                          Originally posted by DLD View Post

                          Which is the producers fault. It's like that old line from "Married ... with Children" - a chimp shoots someone with the gun, you don't blame the chimp, you blame the idiot who gave him the gun.
                          Right, but they didn't hire a chimp. They hired an armorer. Now, if your armorer is legally required to have some sort of license or certification or union card, and they hired an armorer without that, then they're clearly at fault. (And maybe that is a requirement? I don't know.) But otherwise, you're in a gray area where the producer has to make a judgement call based on the armorer's experience level and demonstrated abilities.

                          The reality is that the armorer is assuming tremendous liability when they're hired to ensure the safety of others. This armorer is super young and super green, but she is an adult and she should have known that.

                          Personally, I blame the producers as well. I've known producers who have gambled with the safety of others. I just think it would be difficult to prosecute them.
                          www.VideoAbe.com

                          "If you’re really in favor of free speech, then you’re in favor of freedom of speech for precisely the views you despise. Otherwise, you’re not in favor of free speech." - Noam Chomsky

                          Comment


                            Gulp, I agree with that. But, wait, there's more.

                            We know the responsibilities, but what are armorer's powers on the set? Can she tell producers/directors and star actors to mind their own business or is s/he like a caterer, "If you don't like ham&cheese, take tuna", i.e., no power whatsoever. After all, she is merely an employee and, while seeking to start up her career, she has to play ball with big shots.

                            https://www.yahoo.com/entertainment/...ycsrp_catchall

                            Comment


                              Originally posted by DLD View Post
                              Gulp, I agree with that. But, wait, there's more.

                              We know the responsibilities, but what are armorer's powers on the set? Can she tell producers/directors and star actors to mind their own business or is s/he like a caterer, "If you don't like ham&cheese, take tuna", i.e., no power whatsoever. After all, she is merely an employee and, while seeking to start up her career, she has to play ball with big shots.

                              https://www.yahoo.com/entertainment/...ycsrp_catchall
                              I think this part is potentially exonerating: "She said she "fought for training, days to maintain weapons, and proper time to prepare for gunfire but ultimately was overruled by production and her department."'

                              If she has documentation of that, it's helpful.

                              The problem is that there was a singular incident where the AD carried a gun from her to set and called cold gun. What happened there? Did she assume the gun was empty and fail to check it? If she needs more time, then she should take it and make them wait. It's like the cab driver being ordered to speed scenario. They can refuse.

                              And broadly speaking, the positions responsible for safety can bring a shoot to a halt. I AC'd on a Ray Liotta movie where it was raining so hard one night that the lighting cranes started tilting over in the mud. The key grip ordered the shoot to wrap. That's his job and his authority and if producers refused to listen to him then he would probably need to walk off. But realistically they can't proceed without him or his department. Just like Rust would have had to prepare the guns themselves if she refused and then assumed the liability themselves.
                              www.VideoAbe.com

                              "If you’re really in favor of free speech, then you’re in favor of freedom of speech for precisely the views you despise. Otherwise, you’re not in favor of free speech." - Noam Chomsky

                              Comment


                                Originally posted by ahalpert View Post
                                Michael Shannon weighs in on Rust. Not that his opinion matters, I just happen to agree with him, although it's interesting he doesn't feel like Baldwin followed proper procedures, including putting his finger on the trigger. Some excerpts from the interview:



                                https://www.chicagotribune.com/enter...bnu-story.html
                                What Michael Shannon describes would seem to be the normal procedure based on my limited experience. In this case, though, the armourer wasn't allowed on set due to the covid protocols they were following. Perhaps if the crew would have followed through with normal procedure for handing off the gun, the bullets would have been flagged and questioned.

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