Assistant Director On 'Rust' Has History Of Gun Safety Complaints
By Bill Galluccio
October 24, 2021
An assistant director working on the set of Rust has a history of complaints about failing to follow safety protocols. IATSE Local 44 prop maker Maggie Goll issued a statement detailing several incidents involving Dave Halls during filming for Hulu's Into the Dark in 2019.
Goll said that Halls never held safety meetings and constantly ignored the concerns of crew members.
"He did not maintain a safe working environment," she said in the statement. "Sets were almost always allowed to become increasingly claustrophobic, no established fire lanes, exits blocked ... safety meetings were nonexistent."
Goll, who is also a licensed pyrotechnician, explained that Halls never announced when a gun was on set.
"There is absolutely no reason that gun safety should be ignored on set, even when it is a non-firing prop firearm," Goll said. "The only reason the crew was made aware of a weapon's presence was because the assistant prop master demanded Dave acknowledge and announce the situation each day."
Goll's statement also claimed that Halls had a history of making crew members uncomfortable.
"On my first day back on the series, another crew member told me to 'watch out' for Dave, saying he was too physically familiar with the crew, despite many rebuffs and complaints about unwanted and unnecessary touches. Nothing too extreme, but crew members of all genders and dispositions were being made uncomfortable by Dave's touches to their backs, waists, shoulders, etc."
Halls is the person who handed the prop gun to Alec Baldwin, telling him the weapon was "cold," which means it was not loaded with live ammunition. Baldwin pulled the trigger, fatally shooting cinematographer Halyna Hutchins and wounding director Joel Souza, who was standing behind her.
"In all my years, I've never been handed a hot gun," Baldwin reportedly said after the tragic accident.
Baldwin said that his "heart is broken for her husband, their son, and all who knew and loved Halyna."
"There are no words to convey my shock and sadness regarding the tragic accident that took the life of Halyna Hutchins, a wife, mother, and deeply admired colleague of ours," Baldwin said in a statement. "I'm fully cooperating with the police investigation to address how this tragedy occurred. I am in touch with her husband, offering my support to him and his family. My heart is broken for her husband, their son, and all who knew and loved Halyna."
Authorities and continuing their investigation into the fatal shooting and have not filed any charges or made any arrests.