'Real guns aren't necessary on film sets anymore,' says Guillermo del Toro

The Mexican film director says he has not used a real gun on a set 'since 2007 or 2008'

Director Guillermo Del Toro poses for photographers upon arrival at the BAFTA 2018 Awards in London, Sunday, Feb. 18, 2018. (Photo by Joel C Ryan/Invision/AP)
Beta V.1.0 - Powered by automated translation

Guillermo del Toro says it is not "necessary" to use real guns on film sets any more, following the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.

The Academy Award-winning director said tragedies that occur because of "preventable factors" would weigh heavily on film producers.

Hutchins, 42, was fatally injured on the Rust film set in New Mexico after a prop gun used by Alec Baldwin was discharged.

A vigil for late cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, who was fatally shot on the film set of 'Rust' on October 21, 2021. Reuters

Discussing the issue of safety on sets at The Hollywood Reporter director's roundtable, Del Toro said: "I haven't shot a real gun on a movie set since 2007 or 2008.

"I don't think it's necessary anymore. I really don't."

Del Toro said owing to the amount of safety "paraphernalia" and protocols that come with using real firearms, "from the practical safety point of view" it was better to get rid of them.

"It is the safest thing you can do, and you can do it almost with a phone app," he said.

He said: "Accidents do happen, I've had accidents in my sets.

"If an accident happens by the confluence of three, four factors that are unpredictable, that's one thing.

"But if they happen and there's one or two factors that are preventable, that weighs heavily on the director or producer.

"But you try to prevent them, and the rest is tragedy, it really is tragedy. And no one can be above to judge".

Del Toro's new film Nightmare Alley follows a hustler who sets his sights on manipulating the rich.

The sinister story about greed, fear and manipulation stars Bradley Cooper, Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara.

Updated: January 21, 2022, 6:51 AM