29 Jan 2022

Woman shot dead by Alec Baldwin was in Offaly last year

'We witnessed her creativity, her authentic way of working'

Woman shot dead by Alec Baldwin was in Offaly last year

Halyna Hutchins in Birr in 2020

The talented cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, who was shot dead by actor Alec Baldwin in a tragic accident on the set of her latest movie, visited Offaly in 2020.

Hutchins was killed on Thursday after sustaining a gunshot to the chest from a gun fired by Baldwin during filming for Western movie Rust in New Mexico. The Ukrainian-born cinematographer was working as director of photography on the film set.

It has since emerged that Hutchins was in Offaly in the summer of 2020 shooting an untitled piece. She was behind the camera at Birr Castle for the low-budget film but Alicia Clements from the castle remembered her fondly.

"We are deeply saddened to hear of the tragic loss of Halyna Hutchins," she said.

"During her time at Birr Castle in 2020, we witnessed her creativity, her authentic way of working as well as her vision. The picture you see here is the candlelit Waterford crystal chandelier in the Music Saloon of Birr Castle last used by Halyna and her crew during filming in late Summer of last year. Deepest condolences to her family and loved ones."

Halyna was also remembered on Saturday by Barry Coyle, a casting director who worked with Hutchins in Dublin and Birr during her time here. Speaking to the Irish Times, he said: "She had a sensibility where she really appreciated Irish art and the way of expression Irish people have.”

“She was genuinely interesting and engaged with people. She saw things differently and was a really inspiring person to talk to and be around," he added.

Actor Alec Baldwin also broke his silence on Friday after the fatal incident. He said he was fully cooperating with the police investigating the death. A probe has been launched into how the weapons for the movie were prepared and controlled.

"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 on Twitter.

"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," he added.

Rust director Joel Souza, who was also struck by the projectile fired from the gun has said he is "gutted" at the loss of his "friend and colleague Halyna."

Souza was standing behind Halyna when the shooting occurred and sustained minor injuries. In a statement, he said: "She was kind, vibrant, incredibly talented, fought for every inch and always pushed me to be better.

PICTURED: Halyna Hutchins behind the camera in Birr in 2020

"My thoughts are with her family at this most difficult time. I am humbled and grateful by the outpouring of affection we have received from our filmmaking community, the people of Santa Fe, and the hundreds of strangers who have reached out….. It will surely aid in my recovery."

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