Dwayne Johnson Says He’ll Stop Using Real Guns In His Movies
That picture above is a still from Red Notice, Dwayne Johnson’s latest blockbuster. It’s an action thriller, with Johnson as an FBI profiler pursuing two different art thieves all over the world. There are chase scenes, explosions, fist fights, and a fair amount of gunplay.
The use of guns in movies has been a hot topic in Hollywood lately, ever since the tragic accident on the set of of the indie Western Rust involving a loaded firearm. The film’s star, Alec Baldwin, supposedly believed a gun was empty as he used it to rehearse a scene. He pulled the trigger and a projectile left the barrel, striking both the film’s director, Joel Souza, and cinematographer Halyna Hutchins. Souza recovered, but Hutchins died of her injuries.
Police are still investigating what the weapon was loaded with and who is at fault, but many within the industry are already calling for major changes to the safety regulations on film sets. Some are calling for working guns to be eliminated from sets entirely, replaced by props that can’t fire live rounds, and it looks like Johnson is joining them. He told Variety at the Red Notice premiere that “any movie that we have moving forward with Seven Bucks Productions — any movie, any television show, or anything we do or produce — we won’t use real guns at all.” He said his company will instead use “rubber guns” and computer effects.
“We’re not going to worry about the dollars; we won’t worry about what it costs,” he added.
It will be interesting to see whether the wider industry follows Johnson’s lead, or if things continue to be done as they’ve always been done, with working guns loaded with blank rounds. It will also be interesting to see if anyone in the audience registers a difference in these sorts of scenes when they begin being filmed with rubber guns.
Red Notice premieres on Netflix tomorrow. You can watch Johnson’s full and extremely thoughtful answer to the question of gun safety on film sets below.