Who is Matthew Hutchins, the widower of the woman killed by Alec Baldwin in ‘Rust’?
Cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was fatally shot on the set of ‘Rust’ by Alec Baldwin last year. She is survived by her husband Matt Hutchins and son.
The family and widower of Halyna Hutchins have reached a wrongful death settlement with Alec Baldwin and other producers of the movie ‘Rust’. The 42-year-old cinematographer was fatally shot by a prop gun on the set of the film in New Mexico by Baldwin, actor, director and producer of the ill-fated film in October 2021.
As part of the settlement, Halyna’s husband will now executive produce the Western movie when it resumes filming in January 2023. So who is Matt Hutchins and what experience does he have producing films?
Who is Matthew Hutchins?
According to his LinkedIn page, Matthew ‘Matt’ Hutchins has been an associate at the Los Angeles law firm, Latham & Watkins since March 2021. After getting an undergraduate degree in Economics from the University of Southern California in 2005, he taught at International House before attending Harvard Law School which he graduated from in 2010.
He has practiced most of his law career in the Greater Los Angeles area, but he also has experience in the movies. Hutchins was the executive producer of a 2015 short film ‘Hidden’. The 20-minute movie “tells the story of the guilt of a Persian immigrant family’s older son about the loss of his younger brother, and of his redemption when he finally accepts life’s various twists and turns,” according to its description on IMDb. Although the number of reviews is limited, it received a 7.7 out of ten on average.
This next film, however, will be a much bigger project and one that comes with baggage not least due to the tragic reason filming was put on hold indefinitely until now. Prior to the fatal shooting of Hutchins’ wife Halyna the production had had other problems, some which are thought to have resulted in the death of the cinematographer.
Problems on the set of ‘Rust’
Filming for ‘Rust’ began 6 October 2021 and problems beset the production from the onset. Disputes arose when the production crew found out that instead of being put up in fully-paid hotel rooms in Santa Fe, the closest city to the Bonanza Creek Ranch where the film was being shot, they would be staying in Albuquerque. That nearly doubled their commute time each morning to the set, around 50 minutes.
Tensions over safety concerns on the set worsened to the point that Halyna was forced to push for safer working conditions for her team. One concern was over the prop gun that fatally killed her reportedly had misfired three times in the two weeks prior to the horrific incident.
The day of the fatal shooting with what Baldwin says he was told was a “cold gun”, meaning it wasn’t loaded with any live ammo, the camera crew walked off the set in protest. In addition to safety concerns, workers had complained of excessive hours and delayed paychecks.
Filming “will resume with all the original principal players on board”
In a statement released after the wrongful death settlement was reached, Halyna’s widower said that filming will resume in January 2023 with him taking the position of executive producer and will have “all the original principal players on board.” In his first interview after his wife was killed, Hutchins told the Today show “There were a number of industry standards that were not practiced and there’s multiple responsible parties.”
Adding, “The idea that the person holding the gun causing it to discharge is not responsible, is absurd to me.” Baldwin and others involved in the fatal shooting, which also injured director Joel Souza in the process, may be facing legal jeopardy. The Santa Fe District Attorney filed an emergency request for funding to prosecute up to four people in connection with the incident. Baldwin was named as one potential defendant.
However, with the settlement Hutchins has “no interest in engaging in recriminations or attribution of blame,” including Baldwin. “All of us believe Halyna’s death was a terrible accident,” Matt said.