The street where Joel Souza lives is the same one he grew up on. His neighbors have known him since he was a child.
"He always wanted to be a writer for movies, speech for making movies. I was really shocked actually to see he was directing," said neighbor Sam Bidkaram.
It had been a dream come true for Souza until tragedy struck Thursday.
A prop gun held by actor Alec Baldwin misfired on the set of the Western movie Rust. The film's cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was killed and Souza, who was directing the project, was hurt.
"Well I didn't believe it. I asked my wife. She told me on the computer that Joel is hurt. I said what he's hurt?," said Bidkaram. Added Felicidad Go, who lives next door, "I was surprised really. I thought it’s not in a movie."
According to the Los Angeles Times, there had been concerns about safety on the set of Rust. The news outlet reported that half a dozen camera crew workers walked off the set in protest just hours before the shooting. There were reportedly earlier misfires on the prop gun Saturday, and one the previous week. Then Thursday's shooting.
KTVU obtained the 911 call from the tragic incident.
"We have two people who have been shot, accidentally," a voice can be heard on the recording.
"One aircraft available, they won't be able to take two patients, so I'll be reaching out to another one,"
Authorities in New Mexico are still investigating how this could have happened as there are strict industry standards surrounding the use of prop guns.
In the meantime, cast members tweeted that Joel Souza was released from the hospital overnight.
His neighbors hope he'll be back and recovering in Fremont soon.
"I was really surprised there but they said he's ok. So I was happy about that," said Bidkaram.
Production of Rust has been put on hold while the shooting incident is investigated.