Nicolas Cage says 'movie stars' need to know 'how to use a gun'

‘Part of the job profile’: Nicholas Cage says movie stars ‘need to know how to use a gun’ as he weighs in on Alec Baldwin’s Rust shooting

  • Nicolas Cage said during a THR roundtable discussion that ‘movie stars’ need to know the proper procedures and protocols for using guns on set
  • His comments come in the wake of the Rust film tragedy when the gun Alec Baldwin was holding discharged and killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins 
  • ‘You need to know how to use a stick shift and drive sports cars, and you do need to know how to use a gun. You do.’
  • Cage noted that he wasn’t placing ‘blame’ on anyone with his comments
  •  In a video shared Sunday, Baldwin called Hutchins’ death ‘the worst situation I’ve ever been involved with’

Actors are weighing in on gun safety in the wake of the fatal shooting on the set of the Alec Baldwin western, Rust, in October.

Nicolas Cage, 57, put in his two cents about guns in film while discussing his craft with fellow actors Andrew Garfield, Simon Rex, Jonathan Majors and Peter Dinklage for The Hollywood Reporter’s roundtable. 

The Face/Off star feels that it’s incumbent on ‘movie stars’ to know the proper procedures for handling real weapons while filming. ‘Those are part of the job profiles,’ he said.  

Weighing in: Nicolas Cage, 57, put in his two cents about guns in film while discussing his craft with fellow actors Andrew Garfield, Simon Rex, Jonathan Majors and Peter Dinklage for The Hollywood Reporter’s roundtable following the shooting death on the set of Rust

‘I don’t want to cast blame anywhere,’ Cage began when the roundtable discussion turned to safety on set.

‘But I do think, and I’m not talking about anybody, but people don’t like the word movie star. We want to be humble actors,’ he continued. ‘But a movie star is a bit of a different kind of presentation because you need to know how to ride a horse. You need to know how to fight. You’re going to do fight scenes. You need to know how to ride a motorcycle. 

‘You need to know how to use a stick shift and drive sports cars, and you do need to know how to use a gun. You do. You need to take the time to know what the procedure is. Those are part of the job profiles.’ 

Many actors have spoken out about their dislike of using real guns with blanks on film sets following the incident on the set of Rust when the weapon Alec Baldwin was holding discharged, shooting and killing the cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.  

‘You need to know how to use a stick shift and drive sports cars, and you do need to know how to use a gun. You do. You need to take the time to know what the procedure is. Those are part of the job profiles.’

‘That should never happen again,’ said Peter Dinklage of the incident. ‘Anything we can do to move away from that, then we should. That’s our responsibility.’ 

Andrew Garfield added: ‘Yeah, it’s kind of a no-brainer. If it can be avoided, avoid it.’

Dinklage went on to assert that ‘there has to be change now, 100 percent’ but admitted that the situation is ‘a very complicated thing.’ 

Shortly after the New Year, Baldwin reflected in a video of the accidental killing of Hutchins.


‘That should never happen again,’ said Peter Dinklage of the incident. ‘Anything we can do to move away from that, then we should. That’s our responsibility.’ Andrew Garfield added: ‘Yeah, it’s kind of a no-brainer. If it can be avoided, avoid it.’

In a nearly 13-minute video posted to his Instagram on Sunday, he described Hutchins’ death as the ‘worst situation’ he had ‘ever been involved with.’

Baldwin fatally shot Hutchins, the cinematographer on his film Rust, during a rehearsal on October 21 of last year.

Director Joel Souza was also injured from Baldwin’s prop gun, though he survived his injuries.

In an interview with George Stephanopoulos for ABC, the actor claimed the gun went off while he was practicing his blocking for the scene, with Hutchins instructing him to point the gun to the side of the camera in her direction.

Tragic: Many actors have spoken out about their dislike of using real guns with blanks on film sets following the incident on the set of Rust when the weapon Alec Baldwin was holding discharged, shooting and killing the cinematographer Halyna Hutchins

‘And I cock the gun, I go, ‘Can you see that? Can you see that? Can you see that?’ And she says … and then I let go of the hammer of the gun, and the gun goes off. I let go of the hammer of the gun, the gun goes off,’ he said.

The shooting is currently under investigation, and a search warrant was issued in late December for Baldwin’s cellphone, which he was seen talking on shortly after the shooting.

The warrant give police permission to go through all text messages and photos he might have, along with stored location data.

Baldwin has maintained throughout the shooting’s aftermath that he did not pull the trigger before the gun fired.

In his latest video, Baldwin sounded optimistic about 2022 after noting that ‘I’ve had more people who have been kind and thoughtful and generous of spirit than I’ve had people who are malignant about the death of Halyna Hutchins.’

He continued, ‘I’m not afraid to say that, and to couch that in some euphemisms — somebody died very tragically. And I’ve gotten so much, I mean so much, goodwill from people. It’s just incredible.

‘This has been surely the worst situation I’ve ever been involved with and I’m very hopeful that the people in charge with investigating this whole thing get to the truth as soon as possible. No one wants the truth more than I do.’

Baldwin added that he had been having conversations with ‘some very interesting people’ who were instructing him on how to leave ‘negativity’ behind in the new year.

‘This has been surely the worst situation I’ve ever been involved with and I’m very hopeful that the people in charge with investigating this whole thing get to the truth as soon as possible. No one wants the truth more than I do,’ Baldwin said in a recent video

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