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After Alec Baldwin incident, Senate pushed to prioritize ‘Eddie Garcia’ bill

Republika

Following the events of Hollywood actor Alec Baldwin accidentally firing a prop gun with a live bullet, a House leader is urging the Senate to prioritize the “Eddie Garcia” bill. Deputy Speaker Mikee Romero, who is the 1-Pacman party-list congressman, explained that the bill aimed to prevent similar incidents.


Baldwin had been filming the movie ‘Rust’ and apparently did not know the bullets were not blanks. Cinematographer Halyna Hutchins died while director Joel Souza was injured.


House Bill 7762 is known as the Eddie Garcia bill as it was authored after the veteran actor died from an accident on the set of a television series. It received a nod from the House in November of last year. Romero, the principal author of the bill, also happens to be Garcia’s stepson. His mother Lilibeth was the actor’s long-time partner.


“It is sad to note that the ‘Rust’ tragedy turned [into] a replay of what happened to young actor Brandon Lee,” Romero said, “who was killed while filming the movie ‘The Crow’.” He was referring to action star Bruce Lee’s son who died after a fellow actor shot him with a live bullet.


The bill aims to set policies for independent contractors and workers’ protection, including actors, extras, and others in the entertainment industry across film, television, and radio. Aside from assurances regarding occupational and health safety on set across production phases to be provided by the producer, it also aims for movie workers to get insurance coverage.


Better pay and working conditions are also being sought by the bill, alongside a mandate for a dedicated emergency vehicle to be present during production.


“I appeal to our honorable counterparts in the Senate to give this measure the swift approval it needs for the benefit [of] or local entertainment industry workers,” he added, “who are facing these hazards while on duty.”


Convicted Senator Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr., himself an actor, has filed a counterpart measure in the Senate. At present, it is still pending before the committee on labor, employment and human resources development.

Photo: 24 Pilipinas


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