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Alec Baldwin to make acting return in two Italian Christmas films after 'Rust' tragedy

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Alec Baldwin will return to screens after the fatal shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins in two Italian Christmas films, according to reports.

According to Deadline, Baldwin and his brother William Baldwin are flying out to Italy to film Kid Santa and Billie’s Magic World, two family comedy films which blend live-action and animation. Filming on the projects has already started in Rome.

The two movies reunite Baldwin with director Francesco Cinquemani, who he previously worked with on 2015 sci-fi film Andron.

On October 21 last year, Baldwin discharged a prop firearm on the set of Rust at Bonanza Creed Ranch in New Mexico, which killed Hutchins and injured director Joel Souza.

Rust cinematographer Halyna Hutchins dead fatal shooting prop gun Alec Baldwin
Halyna Hutchins photographed in 2019. Credit: Fred Hayes/Getty Images for SAGindie

In legal documents obtained by CNN earlier this month, Baldwin claims he asked Hutchins if he should cock the gun that ultimately fired the live round of ammunition.

“Baldwin asked Hutchins whether she wanted to see him cock the gun, as the script required,” reads the arbitration demand filed by Baldwin’s lawyer. “She responded yes.”

A statement from Hutchins’ family in response claimed the actor is “trying to avoid liability and accountability for his reckless actions before and on October 21 that resulted in the death of Halyna Hutchins.”

Last month, the family of Hutchins filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Baldwin and other members of the Rust production team. The lawsuit claims the cinematographer was killed due to “reckless behaviour and cost-cutting” on the production.

A statement from Baldwin and Rust attorney Aaron Dyer in response (via Deadline), read: “Everyone’s hearts and thoughts remain with Halyna’s family as they continue to process this unspeakable tragedy. We continue to cooperate with authorities to determine how live ammunition arrived on the Rust set in the first place.

“He [Baldwin], Halyna and the rest of the crew relied on the statement by the two professionals responsible for checking the gun that it was a ‘cold gun’ – meaning there is no possibility of a discharge, blank or otherwise.”

This followed lawsuits from three Rust crew members against the production team, including Serge Svetnoy, script supervisor Mamie Mitchell and medic Cherlyn Schaefer. In January, Baldwin and Rust producers asked a California judge to toss out the lawsuit from Mitchell, saying: “Nothing about Plaintiff’s allegations suggest that any of the Defendants, including Mr, Baldwin, intended the prop gun to be loaded with ammunition.”

The Santa Fe Sheriff’s Office has yet to charge anyone for Hutchins’ death, with the investigation still ongoing.

In an interview with ABC News in December, Baldwin claimed he “didn’t pull the trigger” on the gun which killed Hutchins. “I would never point a gun at anyone and pull a trigger at them, never,” Baldwin said.

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