George Clooney appeared on comedian Marc Maron’s popular ‘WTF’ podcast and took the opportunity to talk about the fatal shooting that occurred on the set of Alec Baldwin western film ‘Rust’.
“Why, for the life of me, this low-budget film with producers who haven’t produced anything wouldn’t have hired for the armorer someone with experience…they weren’t even using that gun to do target practice and that is insane,” Clooney said on the popular podcast. He said it was ‘insane’ and ‘infuriating’ that live bullets were on the set of Baldwin’s movie, which resulted in the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.
In addition, he recalled his close friendship with Brandon Lee - Bruce Lee’s song - who was accidentally shot and killed on a movie set in 1993. The actor died on the set of ‘The Crow’ at the age of 28 when another actor shot him with a prop gun that mistakenly had a bullet lodged in its barrel. This incident marked the industry forever and since then, many precautions have been taken when it comes to the use of weapons in films.
“After Brandon died, it really became a very clear thing of: open the gun, look down the barrel, look in the cylinder, make sure. It’s a series of tragedies, but, you know, a lot of stupid mistakes,” Clooney said.
The 60 year old director said, “We need to be better at making the heads of department experienced and know what they‘re doing. Because this is just infuriating. Every time I get handed a six gun, you point it at the ground and you fire. You squeeze it six times. Always.’
Regarding his relationship with Baldwin, Clooney commented, ‘I don’t know Alec that well. I‘ve been watching the news and I have to say, they’ve got the bad guy, which is going to be the first AD... He may be a d**k, I don’t know the guy at all, but I‘ve been on sets for 40 years and the person that hands you the gun, the person that is responsible for the gun is either the prop person or the armorer. Period.”