Mamie Mitchell, the screenwriter for the film Rust, can proceed with her lawsuit against Alec Baldwin over the fatal shooting of the film’s cinematographer in New Mexico, a judge ruled Tuesday.
Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Michael E. Whitaker concluded that Mitchell could pursue her claims of assault, willful infliction of emotional distress, and negligence against the actor who accidentally fired the gun used in the Camerawoman Halyna Hutchins was fatally wounded a year ago, according to court records.
The judge also allowed Mitchell to seek punitive damages against Baldwin and his finance company El Dorado Pictures.
“For plea purposes, the Court finds that the second amended complaint alleges facts sufficient to establish despicable conduct conducted by [the defendants] with a willful and knowing disregard for the rights or safety of others,” Whitaker said in his decision.
The decision marks a victory for Mitchell after the same judge blocked most of her claims against the film’s producers in September.
Mitchell was standing near Hutchins when a bullet from Baldwin’s gun struck cinematographer and injured director Joel Souza
“The court had to assume at this point that Mitchell’s allegations against Alec Baldwin are true — although they are demonstrably false, were made in bad faith and contradict her own prior testimonies about what happened,” Baldwin’s attorney, Luke Nikas, said in a statement. “We are pleased that the court has dismissed some of her allegations and look forward to disproving the rest of her case now that she can no longer shield her false claims from evidence.”
The lawsuit is among a series of lawsuits Baldwin and the production have pursued in both California and New Mexico after the tragedy drew attention to safety risks on film sets.
“We are pleased that the court’s preliminary ruling overruled Mr. Baldwin’s objection and allowed our client, Mamie Mitchell, to proceed with her claim against Alec Baldwin, seeking damages for the injuries sustained,” Mitchell’s attorney, Gloria Allred, said in an explanation . “MS. Mitchell looks forward to her trial and to getting justice.”
Last month, the Hutchins family reached an agreement with the producers and Baldwin to settle their case on undisclosed terms. The deal included an agreement to complete the film and have widower Matthew Hutchins executive produce Rust when production resumes.
The producers and actor are still facing a lawsuit from Rust gaffer Serge Svetnoy.
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https://www.latimes.com/entertainment-arts/business/story/2022-11-01/la-judge-allows-rust-script-supervisor-claims-against-alec-baldwin-to-go-ahead ‘Rust’ script supervisor suit against Alec Baldwin can proceed