Woman shot on film set remembered as gifted cinematographer

NEW YORK (AP) – Halyna Hutchins, the cinematographer who was fatally shot with a prop gun by Alec Baldwin on a movie set, grew up on a Soviet military base in the Arctic Circle and worked as an investigative reporter in Europe before studying film in Los Angeles.

Hutchins, 42, was shot Thursday on the New Mexico set of the Western “Rust.” A spokesperson for Baldwin said there was an accident involving a prop gun with blanks. Detectives were investigating.

According to her website, she grew up on the Soviet base “surrounded by reindeer and nuclear submarines.” She received a graduate degree in international journalism from Kyiv National University in Ukraine, worked on British documentary productions in Europe and graduated from the American Film Institute Conservatory in 2015.

Her other credits include the crime drama “Blindfire” and the horror film “Darlin,” whose director, Pollyanna McIntosh, called her “the most talented, in the trenches, committed wonderful artist and team mate.”

Friends and colleagues soon posted tributes on social media.

“I’m so sad about losing Halyna. And so infuriated that this could happen on a set,” Director Adam Egypt Mortimer, who worked with her on the 2020 thriller “Archenemy,” tweeted. “She was a brilliant talent who was absolutely committed to art and to film.”

The star of “Archenemy,” Joe Manganiello, tweeted that Hutchins was “an incredible talent & great person.”

“I can’t believe this could happen in this day and age … gunfire from a prop gun could kill a crew member? What a horrible tragedy. My heart goes out to her family,” he wrote.

McIntosh posted several photos of Hutchins from the set of her 2019 film on Instagram.

“We were so lucky to have her as cinematographer on Darlin’. We’ll miss you. You were going to keep making amazing films,” McIntosh wrote.

On her Instagram page, Hutchins identified herself as a “restless dreamer” and “adrenaline junkie.” In recent days, she posted several images from the set of “Rust” on the outskirts of Santa Fe, New Mexico. The images included an early morning shot of the desert sky, a video of herself riding horseback during a day off and a photo of the crew gathered to express solidarity with union members seeking a new contract.

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