On October 21, on the set of the film Rust, the cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was shot and killed by Alec Baldwin with a Pietta Long Colt revolver. The assistant director Dave Halls shouted "cold gun, cold gun!" before handing the gun to Baldwin.
A number of theories have been presented for the cause of the incident:
- a series of egregious failures and gross negligence of following safety protocol, due to a low budget citing the armourer Hannah Reed as the key perpetrator of the incident by bringing live ammo to a film set
- a prank gone wrong that was perpetrated by workers as a revolt against poor working conditions and issues regarding delayed pay
- a setup to murder Halyna Hutchins perpetrated by both Hanna Reed and the assistant director Dave Halls with or without Alec Baldwins knowledge and organised by a higher entity, such as the Clinton family, as a warning and deterrent to investigators of false accusations by Hillary Clinton of Russian interference in the 2016 election
Gun etiquette argument
A number of outspoken Hollywood actors have weighed in on the incident including John Schneider and George Clooney who have extensive experience with gun safety have repeatedly cited the protocol and etiquette that is followed when using a fire-arm on set. Every time the gun exchanges hands it is first examined by the armourer and fired (by clicking the trigger) at the ground 7 times (if it is a 6-round revolver) both by the armourer and the actor to show that all 6 barrels of the gun are empty and one extra time for good measure. Every film production that is following safety guidelines involving fire-arms goes through a training exercise of this protocol and involves all of the actors. It would be impossible for a gun to cause injury on set when following these protocols.
Therefore even though a number of catastrophic failures would have had to occur leading up the fatal shot, including the armourer failing to carry out her sole duty, Alec Baldwin's negligence by simply not following the procedure of inspecting the gun for ammo and firing empty rounds into the ground before handling the gun is undeniable.
The bullet in the revolver would have had to have been in exactly the right position for a one-shot one-kill scenario, or otherwise all 6 chambers filled, meaning whoever loaded the gun would have either purposely loaded the gun with live ammunition or not inspected the firearm at all.
Both Dave Hall and Hannah Reed have been in incidents breaking gun safety protocol on previous films. Hannah Reed handed an unchecked gun to an 11 year-old on Nicholas Cage Movie, The Old Way and Assistant director Dave Halls repeatedly failed to announce the presence of firearms on the set of the Into the Dark series.
Didn't pull the trigger
Alec Baldwin has stated in interviews that he did not pull the trigger of the gun. Gun safety expert Steve Wolf has demonstrated with an identical fire-arm to the one used on the set (a Pietta Long Colt revolver) that it would be impossible to fire the weapon without holding the trigger down at some point either before or after pulling the hammer back without the gun being modified or extremely damaged. In this situation Alec Baldwin would had to have had his finger pulling down on the trigger and would have released the hammer at exactly the point at which it was pointing at Halyna.
'Prop gun' (Dummy ammo vs real ammo)
A prop gun is a real gun being used as a prop. Sometimes films will use VFX and sound design to simulate firing, or blanks are loaded into the gun which are still dangerous at close range but do not fire a projectile unless wadding is added. A dummy round contains no propellant and is inert and will not fire. It has been concluded that the ammo in the gun was live ammo.
It has been repeatedly stated by actors and gun safety experts and common sense that there is no reason to have live ammo on a film set. In this case a rehearsal was being carried out, so by all reasonable assumptions, not only should no live ammo have been on the set, no ammo should have been in the fire-arm at all at this point in time.
Hannah Reed has admitted to doing target practice with real fire-arms and ammo nearby. Live ammo, blank rounds and dummy rounds are all visually different and upon inspection are clearly different even to someone with no experience in guns or ammunition.
Halyna Hutchinson's connection the Clintons
The husband of Halyna Hutchins, Mathew Hutchins, is an attorney for DC law firm Latham & Watkins  - a law firm that represented the Clinton campaign and the Clinton foundation in multiple litigations. Latham & Watkins is representing lawyer Michael Sussmann  who was indicted for providing false information regarding the 2016 election claiming that Trump had an electronic channel linking to Russian banks. The shooting could have been a hit ordered by the Clinton family as a warning to all of the employees of Latham & Watkins who were representing Sussman, and his fraudulent claims of Russian interference in the 2016 election, which would have obvious implications for Hillary Clinton if the full truth were revealed.
Baldwin's criticism of gun laws and gun ownership