Alec Baldwin and the production company behind the troubled Western "Rust" have reached a settlement in the wrongful death lawsuit filed by the family of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, who was fatally shot on the movie's set last fall.
As part of the settlement announced Wednesday, her husband Matthew Hutchins will serve as an executive producer on the movie, which plans to resume production in January. He was a plaintiff in the suit along with the couple's 9-year-old son, Andros.
"We have reached a settlement, subject to court approval, for our wrongful death case against the producers of 'Rust' including Alec Baldwin and Rust Movie Productions," Matthew Hutchins said in a statement provided to USA TODAY by his attorney Brian Panish of Panish Shea Boyle Ravipudi LLP. "I have no interest in engaging in recriminations or attribution of blame (to the producers or Mr. Baldwin). All of us believe Halyna's death was a terrible accident. I am grateful that the producers and the entertainment community have come together to pay tribute to Halyna's final work."
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USA TODAY also obtained a statement from Baldwin's attorney, Luke Nikas of Quinn Emanuel: "Throughout this difficult process, everyone has maintained the specific desire to do what is best for Halyna’s son. We are grateful to everyone who contributed to the resolution of this tragic and painful situation.”
Rust Movie Productions, LLC, through its attorney, Melina Spadone of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman, added: “We are pleased the parties came together to resolve this matter, which, subject to court approval, marks an important step forward in celebrating Halyna's life and honoring her work."
The terms of the settlement were not disclosed.
The Santa Fe District Attorney's office indicated the agreement would have no bearing on the criminal case.
"The proposed settlement announced today in Matthew Hutchins’ wrongful death case against 'Rust' movie producers, including Alec Baldwin, in the death of Halyna Hutchins will have no impact on District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altweis’ ongoing investigation or her ultimate decision whether to file criminal charges in the case," Heather Brewer, a spokesperson for the DA's office, told USA TODAY in a statement.
"While civil suits are settled privately and often involve financial awards, criminal cases deal only in facts. If the facts and evidence warrant criminal charges under New Mexico law then charges will be brought. No one is above the law."
The wrongful death civil suit was filed in February, months after Halyna Hutchins' death on Oct. 21, 2021. During a rehearsal on the New Mexico set, Baldwin, a star and producer on the movie, drew a prop gun, pointed it toward Hutchins and the camera, and the gun discharged, firing a live bullet.
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"Those of us who were lucky enough to have spent time with Halyna knew her to be exceedingly talented, kind, creative, and a source of incredible positive energy," said "Rust" director Joel Souza, who was also struck by the bullet that killed Hutchins. "I only wish the world had gotten to know her under different circumstances, as it surely would have through her amazing work.
"In my own attempts to heal, any decision to return to finish directing the film could only make sense for me if it was done with the involvement of Matt and the Hutchins family. Though certainly bittersweet, I am pleased that together, we will now complete what Halyna and I started. My every effort on this film will be devoted to honoring Halyna’s legacy and making her proud. It is a privilege to see this through on her behalf."
In a June interview with USA TODAY, Baldwin's "Rust" co-star Jensen Ackles said he'd be "pretty shocked" if filming were to resume on the Western. Hutchins "was doing something really exceptional," Ackles told USA TODAY. "She was an incredible talent, and I wish there was some way to get it out there to the masses, but I don't know that that's possible.”
The police investigation into the shooting remains ongoing. Authorities have revealed little but did recently release two investigative reports, including the FBI's analysis of the prop gun that killed Hutchins and the medical examiner's report, which deemed her death an accident.
The FBI concluded that the gun could not have been fired "without a pull of the trigger," which contradicts Baldwin's account of how he handled the weapon. In an interview with ABC News, Baldwin said he cocked the gun but didn't pull the trigger.
In August, Deadline obtained a letter from the DA's offices to the New Mexico Board of Finance requesting $635,000 to prosecute as many as four possible individuals with criminal and homicide charges related to the shooting, one of them being Baldwin.
Baldwin's lawyer Nikas responded “that it would be premature to discuss the case because (the DA’s office) had not yet reviewed the file or deliberated about their charging decision.”
Contributing: Maria Puente, USA TODAY, and The Associated Press
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Alec Baldwin, 'Rust' producers settle suit in Halyna Hutchins' death