In the weeks since Halyna Hutchins was killed on the set of the movie Rust, there's been a good deal of debate over who is responsible for cinematrographer's tragic passing.
As you're probably aware, it was actor Alec Baldwin who held the prop gun that discharged, causing Hutchins to be struck by the live round that claimed her life.
Since Baldwin was not only the person holding the weapon, but also a producer on the low-budget indie film, many have argued that he bears the majority of the blame.
But in his first sit-down interview on the subject of Hutchins' death, the actor makes some surprising -- and some say infuriating -- arguments for why the accident was not his fault.
For starters, Baldwin says he never pulled the trigger.
"The trigger wasn't pulled. I didn't pull the trigger. I would never point a gun at someone and pull the trigger on them, never," he told interviewer George Stephanopolous.
“It wasn’t in the script for the trigger to be pulled.”
“So you never pulled the trigger?” a stunned Stephanopolous replied.
“No, no, no, no. I would never point a gun at anyone and pull the trigger at them, never.”
On Twitter, users reacted to the claim with rage and incredulity, as many pointed out that guns generally don't go off without someone pulling the trigger.
“It was a Single Action Revolver you must pull back on the Hammer to engage the Action and the Trigger to fire the Weapon,” one user wrote.
“If you don’t pull back on the Hammer you can squeeze the trigger all day long and the Weapon will not fire.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Baldwin seemed to deflect the blame onto others, though he stopped just short of naming names.
"I was told I was handed an empty gun," he said.
"If there were cosmetic rounds, nothing with a charge at all, no flash round, nothing. She goes down. I thought to myself, did she faint?" the actor recalled.
“The idea that someone put a live round in the gun was not ever reality."
Understandably confused by Baldwin's claims, Stephanopolous bluntly asked the actor how Hutchins wound up dead if the gun was empty and the trigger was never pulled.
"I have no idea” Baldwin said.
“Someone put a live bullet in a gun, a bullet that wasn’t even supposed to be on the property.”
From there, Baldwin revealed that he knows who was responsible for the incident, but he's not giving any names, presumably for legal reasons.
"I feel that someone is responsible for what happened, and I can’t say who that is," he said.
"But I know it’s not me."
The actor concluded by saying that if he felt he were to blame for Hutchins' death, he probably would have taken his own life already.
"I mean, honest to God, if I felt that I was responsible, I might have killed myself if I thought I was responsible. And I don’t say that lightly," he said.
Many believe that when this matter eventually lands him in court, Baldwin will place the blame on Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, who was in charge of prop weapons on the project.
Reed allegedly had a history of unsafe behavior on set.
At this time, no criminal charges have been filed in connection with Hutchins' death, but it seems almost certain that the matter will be litigated in civil court when Hutchins' family begins filing lawsuits.
We'll have further updates on this developing story as more information becomes available.