Alec Baldwin: MSNBC Show Might Not Be Back

Image: Alec Baldwin: MSNBC Show Might Not Be Back

Sunday, 17 Nov 2013 11:27 AM

By Todd Beamon

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Actor Alec Baldwin said on Saturday that his "Up Late" program might not return to MSNBC following its two weeks suspension slapped on it after he shouted an anti-gay slur at a reporter.

"Whether the show comes back at all is at issue right now," Baldwin said in an article he wrote for The Huffington Post. His show has been struggling with ratings, experiencing a sharp drop in viewers since its premiere in October.

Baldwin also suggested he might quit acting altogether.

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“If quitting the television business, the movie business, the theatre, any component of entertainment, is necessary in order to bring safety and peace to my family, then that is an easy decision.”

Baldwin also went slightly off topic to take a slam at outgoing New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

“In Bloomberg's New York, forty or fifty paparazzi are allowed to block streets, inconvenience homeowners, workers and shoppers, and make life miserable for my neighbors,” he complained. “Photographers have tripped and fallen on babies in strollers on my block. They have nearly struck my wife in the face with microphones.”

Because of his ouster, a "very enlightening and well-researched" show examining the assassination of John F. Kennedy — scheduled to run on Nov. 22, the 50th anniversary of the 35th president's death — will not be shown, he said.

"It's heartbreaking to me that the show, meant to coincide with the actual anniversary, will not be aired that night," Baldwin said. "The show is no doubt a work in progress, and one that I believe featured some interesting guests and disseminated a good deal of interesting information."

"But if the show dies," he added, regarding the overall program, "its fate ends up being no different than the vast majority of start-up TV programming, and so be it."

MSNBC suspended Baldwin's show for two weeks on Friday after the actor blew up at reporters seeking comment about a court case in which actress Genevieve Sabourin was convicted of stalking him. She had claimed they had been lovers.

The day before the incident with the journalist, a New York judge had sentenced the obsessed actress to jail for seven months.

In the blow-up outside his Manhattan apartment building, Baldwin knocked a telephone out of  New York Post reporter Kevin Fasick's hand before shoving him against a car.

He apologized on Friday, admitting on Twitter that he had used one "anti-gay epithet," but denied using a second.

But Baldwin hinted that "if my show does disappear," he urged viewers not to allow "my problem to be MSNBC's problem."

"They are good people who work hard at a job, just like many of you," he wrote.

He praised openly gay MSNBC reporter Rachel Maddow as "perhaps the single most important television journalist on air today," and lauded other network hosts.

And he had a sly dig at his CNN rival Anderson Cooper, who has criticized him several times over the summer for his supposed homophobic beliefs. "We do take a small amount of pride in knowing that we beat CNN in the ratings each of our nights. (I forget who they had on at that time,)" he wrote.

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Baldwin also slammed the paparazzi in general and their coverage of celebrities and asked that journalists "please respect the privacy of my wife and family.

"If you have an opinion of me, then express it. Think what you like," Baldwin said. "But I ask that my wife, who I care about more than words can say, and both my children, be left out of this."

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