Following the tragic shooting that occurred on the set of the movie Rust that led to the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, John Wick director Chad Stahleski has said there is no reason to have a live gun on a set. Stahelski, a stunt veteran who now directs, told The Hollywood Reporter that the reason live firearms are still used on sets is because it costs too much to use CG effects. Not only that, but too many people have too much money invested in the use of real weapons on set.
“My feeling is that there’s no reason to have a live firearm on set. We can create cities and spaceships and Godzilla and all these things. We have the technology to do the same with firearms. But, for the last 100 years, Hollywood’s been using real firearms. And for prop houses, armorers or supply houses to switch over, it would make their entire stock of real firearms useless,” he said. “It comes down to the fact that it would cost certain people a great deal of money to switch over. No one wants to say that, but that’s the real reason. You don’t need firearms. The alternative is just going to cost you more money.”
Stahelski was of course not on the Rust set when the tragedy happened, but he has seen on-set accidents first-hand, and they have always been due to human error, he said.but
“It’s never mechanical,” Stahelski said.
The director went on to say that years ago, firearms on set fired blanks–or a bullet without the projectile. But a blank still creates a concussive force that “would be enough to shatter your skull,” Stahelski said, so actors in those scenes do not stand close to one another.
“Accidents like that did happen and people died because of it. But in the past 10 years, they’ve come out with electronic guns, plug guns where it is impossible for anything to come out of the barrel and total CG. That’s the way we do it. That technology is out there for everybody,” Stahelski said.
Stahelski’s next film is John Wick: Chapter 4, which releases on March 24. He’s also attached to direct the movie based on the PlayStation game Ghost of Tsushima.
For more, check out what reviewers are saying about John Wick: Chapter 4.