Pressure mounts to ban real guns in Hollywood after Baldwin tragedy

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Actor Alec Baldwin leaves court in the Manhattan neighborhood of New York, New York, United States, on January 23, 2019. REUTERS / Carlo Allegri

LOS ANGELES, October 25 (Reuters) – The fatal shooting accident on the set of an Alec Baldwin film has prompted calls for a ban on the use of real guns in TV shows and movies , two producers having already announced that they would stop this practice.

“Booksmart” director Olivia Wilde called on Hollywood to implement what she called “Halyna’s Law,” and a petition urging Baldwin to lead a campaign to ban the use of real guns had attracted more than 27,000 votes as of Monday.

The campaign was sparked by the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins and the injury of director Joel Souza while filming the indie western “Rust” at Bonanza Creek ranch near Santa Fe last week.

Both were hit when a revolver containing live ammunition used by Baldwin during a rehearsal fired. Baldwin had been told the gun was unloaded, authorities said.

California State Senator Dave Cortese has said he will introduce legislation to ban live ammunition and firearms capable of firing live ammunition from movie and television sets in the state .

“Those who work behind the scenes to entertain and bring joy to millions of people around the world should not be concerned if they will return home safe and sound to their families,” Cortese said in a statement.

Any applicable laws would not apply to productions in other US states or overseas.

Walt Disney Co, Warner Bros, Netflix Inc and NBC Television did not respond to requests for comment on their gun policies on Monday.

The tragedy raised questions about safety on the set. Souza and cameraman Reid Russel told the Santa Fe Sheriff’s Department that six camera operators came out earlier today, court documents show.

No one has been charged and police are still investigating how the propeller pistol was loaded with live ammunition.

Propeller pistols are often real pistols that are used on sets for the realistic visual effect of flash and recoil after an actor pulls the trigger. They usually contain blank cartridges, which do not have a bullet but use gunpowder, and can be fatal at close range.

“Hollywood: It’s time to create ‘Halyna’s Law’ which will ban the use of live firearms on film production sets and create a safe working environment for everyone involved,” tweeted Wilde Sunday.

She urged people to sign a change.org petition started by independent American filmmaker Bandar Albuliwi after the crash.

“Real guns are no longer needed on film production sets,” Albuliwi wrote. “Please sign this petition and call on Alec Baldwin to use his power and influence in the Hollywood film industry to make a difference and ban real guns from film sets.”

Baldwin declined to comment on the petition on Monday.

Last week, the producers of the ABC crime television series “The Rookie” were among the first to announce that there would no longer be “real” weapons in the series and only air guns and effects. computer generated would be used instead.

Eric Kripke, the executive producer of Amazon’s satirical superhero TV series “The Boys,” tweeted “Never again blank guns on any of my sets. We’ll be using VFX mouth flashes. Who’s with? me ?”

Reporting by Jill Serjeant; edited by Jonathan Oatis

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.


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