‘Rust’ Cinematographer Was 42

Cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, who has worked on a number of independent productions, including Eternal enemy, Blind fire and The Mad Hatter, died on Thursday after being injured when actor Alec Baldwin opened fire on set Rust. She is 42 years old.

“I am very sad to lose Halyna. And very angry that this could happen on set. She is an outstanding talent who is completely dedicated to art and acting,” Eternal enemy director Adam Egypt Mortimer wrote on Twitter.

“What is profoundly true in the art of cinematography, words alone cannot express the loss of someone so dear to the AFI community,” AFI Conservatory, Hutchins’ alma mater, tweeted. “At AFI, we are committed to seeing that Halyna Hutchins will live in the spirit of all those who strive to see their dreams come true in clearly told stories.”

Born in Ukraine in 1979, Hutchins grew up at a Soviet military base in the Arctic Circle. She attended Kyiv National University and graduated with a degree in international journalism. In her early career, she worked as an investigative reporter for British documentaries in Eastern Europe.

Inspired by cinematographers such as Christopher Doyle and Sergey Urusevskiy, she decided to focus on filmmaking and moved to Los Angeles, first working in various production assistant jobs and as a curator. electric machine, and at the same time shooting short films. She graduated from UCLA’s Professional Program in Production in 2010.

On the recommendation of Emmy-winning cinematographer Robert Primes, she entered the American Film Institute Conservatory, the institute’s filmmaking MFA program, in 2013 and graduated two years later. Her thesis project Hidecollaboration with classmate Farzad Ostovarzadeh, was shown at Camerimage, the European festival dedicated to cinema.

In 2018, she was one of eight female cinematographers selected to the Fox DP Lab of the 21st Century, and a year later she was selected as one of the American cinematographer of Rising Stars magazine.

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With Mortimer, she captured the attention of the indie superhero mystery thriller Eternal enemy, released in 2020 by SpecterVision and Voltage. Starring Joe Manganiello, the film premiered at Beyond Fest 2020 and is in official competition at the Sitges International Film Festival, receiving a nomination for best picture.

On Instagram, Manganiello shared that he learned of Hutchins’ death Friday morning and was “shocked”, calling himself “so lucky” to have worked with her. Eternal enemy.

“She is an amazing talent and a wonderful person,” he wrote. “She has such an eye and visual style, she’s the kind of cinematographer you want to see successful because you want to see what she can do next. She is a wonderful person. There’s no pressure she can’t stand. She is a great collaborator and ally to anyone in front of her camera. Everyone who knows her supports her. I can’t believe this can happen in this day and age.”

He added, “This is a terrible tragedy. My heart goes out to her family and especially to her son. Today I feel very sad for everyone who got to know and work with her.”

On her own Instagram account, Hutchins posted several photos of the landscape, sunrise and sunset while filming. Rustcalled one of the sunrise scenes “one of the best parts of shooting a Western scene.”

Just two days ago, she posted a video of herself and others riding horses on her day off.

Frances Fisher, who participated Rust with Baldwin, Hutchins recalled in an Instagram post, in part writing, “I love watching you at work: Your intense focus and your bubbly command of the room.”

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Referring to a recent photo that Hutchins posted on Instagram, “I’m asking you to stand next to me… because I want to make sure you’re front and center, as there are very few photography directors who aren’t. male.”

Fisher said her prayers are with Hutchins’ family and “all those who love and miss you.”

In a tweet thread from November, Mortimer paid tribute to her technical skills, writing, “Halyna Hutchins, DP of Archenemy, has great creativity and texture. Her taste and sensibility for what is cinema is a great asset to the realization of our style – a wretched but beautiful feeling I call Romantic Brutalism. “

Other feature films she has worked on include Michael Nell’s police drama series Blind fire (2020), horror by Cate Devaney The Mad Hatter (2021), Adriana González-Vega’s To the new girl (2020) and the horror film by Pollyanna McIntosh Darlin ‘ (2019). Her short-term credits include I’m normal and Child’s Sunday.

On television, she worked on the original series BET + A Luv Tale: The Series.

Sidra Smith, who worked with Hutchins on A Luv Tale, called the cinematographer’s death “devastating news…it broke my heart into pieces.”

“We talked as she was about to shoot this movie. She was very happy and I am very happy for her. It’s hard here for female cinematographers and this is a huge opportunity for her,” Smith wrote on Instagram. “She is very young and very talented. Halyna and I spent a lot of time together. She is so beautiful and charming and it is impossible to express in words how supportive she is for me. She loved black women, she loved Harlem, what a hard worker. We laughed. This woman is amazing… God bless her beautiful heart and soul. Life is so short. You never know when. This makes me very sad.”

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Hutchins’ company Inno Innovation Artists called her “a ray of light. Always smiling, always hopeful.”

“She decided early on that she was going to pursue a career in cinematography by storm and the past few years have proven that she is on the right track,” an Instagram post from Innovative reads. “Her talent is immense, only surpassed by the love she has for her family. All those in her orbit knew what was to come; a star visual director who would be a force to be reckoned with. “

Adding that everyone at the company is “heartbroken”, the Instagram post continued, “We mourn her family and we hope this tragedy will reveal new lessons in how to take care of yourself.” better safety for all crew members on set.”

Hutchins is survived by her husband, Matthew, an attorney at Latham & Watkins, and son, Andros.

The Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Department said Hutchins and the film’s director, Joel Souza, were shot when Baldwin opened fire to defend himself. Hutchins was airlifted to the University of New Mexico Hospital, where she was pronounced dead. Souza was hospitalized. An investigation is underway.

October 22, 9:41 am This story has been updated with tributes to Hutchins from Manganiello, Smith and the Creative Artists.

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