After Alec Baldwin addressed the press regarding the fatal shooting on the set of Rust last month, experts weighed in on what the impromptu press conference could mean for him.
"It's an active investigation in terms of a woman [Halyna Hutchins] died. She was my friend," Baldwin told photographers in Vermont on Saturday, October 30. "We were a very, very well-oiled crew shooting a film together, and then this horrible event happened."
Lara Yeretsian, a criminal defense attorney, told Fox News that the press briefing was not planned. "It's very raw, very real, very emotional. It's not necessarily what a lawyer would want the client to do. But can I tell you it just shows how upset he is, how this has affected his life, how he's lost a friend. It's real and harrowing," she said.
According to Yeretsian, the actor's wife Hilaria Baldwin looked "upset" in the video.
The attorney said that "there's nothing that [Alec] said here that could hurt him" in a potential criminal case if charges were to be brought against him but if she was his representative, she would not have advised him to speak to the press.
"No lawyer is going to be happy with the fact that his/her client did that. But at the same time, I think at the end of it, when you look at it, you think, 'No, I don't think he hurt himself from the criminal and a PR perspective,"' she explained.
However, chairman of Reputation Management Consultants Eric Schiffer told the publication that the 63-year-old saying the crew was "well-oiled" is "going to come back to haunt him."
"They're going to use that against him, especially if they've got evidence otherwise. … If crew members walked out because of safety issues and problems, then I'm sure they're going to use it against [the producers] now," Schiffer explained. "It's possible that that's what he thought he had, and the issues were minor. We don't really know. And maybe that's why he's using that term or that phrase, but time will tell."
Schiffer felt addressing the press was a bad move. "He is breaking one of the most important rules of managing a crisis, which is don't do any further damage when you are blatantly telling an untruth to the public at a time where your own credibility [is an] issue," he said. "You're hurting yourself in unimaginable ways, especially when the public right now is wondering why an adult would think it would be okay to aim a gun at anyone."
"Keep yourself away from the media," he suggested. "Make sure you're doing whatever you can behind the scenes away from the cameras to help the family of those that you've hurt and allow the investigation to reveal what it will go. I would not [advise] putting [Baldwin] in front of cameras at this point. He made one statement that was enough."