Alec Baldwin has had it with being in the spotlight. "I've lived this [public life] for 30 years. I'm done with it," he told New York Magazine in its new issue. "I loathe and despise the media in a way I did not think possible. ... I'm aware that it's ironic that I'm making this case in the media—but this is the last time I'm going to talk about my personal life in an American publication ever again." Baldwin, 55, also pointed fingers in the first-person narrative, specifically at his former colleagues at MSNBC, the network that canceled his talk show following a firestorm over Baldwin's use of a homophobic slur. (The actor was caught on tape yelling at a paparazzo who was chasing his family.) Meet all the people Baldwin discusses in his piece.
Baldwin called the CNN anchor "the self-appointed Jack Valenti of gay media culture," and said he unfairly attacked the movie star after the incident with the paparazzo. "We beat Cooper two of three Fridays at ten," he added, referring to his now defunct show.
"There was friction between us from the beginning," Baldwin said of working with Shia LaBeouf briefly on the Broadway show "Orphans." "One day he attacked me in front of everyone. He said, 'You're slowing me down, and you don't know your lines. And if you don't say your lines, I'm just going to keep saying my lines,'" Baldwin said. "I asked the company to break. And I took the stage manager, with [director Daniel] Sullivan, to another room, and I said one of us is going to go. I said, 'I'll tell you what, I'll go.' I said don't fire the kid, I'll quit. They said no, no, no, no, and they fired him. And I think he was shocked. He had that card, that card you get when you make films that make a lot of money that gives you a certain kind of entitlement. I think he was surprised that it didn't work in the theater."
Baldwin called MSNBC's morning show, "Morning Joe" "boring" and its host, Joe Scarborough, "neither eloquent nor funny." "And," he added, "merely cranky doesn't always work well in the morning."
The producer of Baldwin's show, Jonathan Larsen, was also mentioned in Baldwin's piece. "Larsen didn't get me or the show and didn't want to be there," he said. "As we went along, Larsen would simply stare at me after everything I'd suggest and say, 'Well, let's see what [MSNBC president] Phil [Griffin] says.' Larsen was sent there to babysit me."
"When I saw that Griffin didn't have a single piece of paper on his desk, meeting after meeting after meeting, that should have been my first indication there was going to be a problem," Baldwin wrote of the MSNBC president. "Phil... couldn't give a flying f--- about content. All he wanted to talk about was Giants tickets, Super Bowl tickets, restaurants, movies. The conversations about the set, about the physical production of the show, cameras, lighting—it seemed like he wanted to get those over with as quickly as possible. He didn't care. He had four monitors on the wall. They were all on, muted. He never listened to them. He never watched them."
Given his relationship with paparazzo, it's no surprise that Baldwin is not fond of TMZ creator Harvey Levin, especially because TMZ was the website that posted the video in which Baldwin allegedly used the homophobic slur. "He's this kind of cretinous barnacle on the press. Levin told the world that that muffled sound on the video—Levin wanted everyone to know he knows what it is. You don't know, and I don't know, but Levin knows, and he tells the world that it's 'f---ot,' he said. (Baldwin maintains that he did not use that word.) He also blasted Levin for posting the voicemail Baldwin left for his daughter, Ireland, a few years back in which he called her a "rude, thoughtless, little pig." "Knowing that none of it would have transpired if I hadn't left the message in the first place, I think he hurt my daughter more than anyone," he added.
Baldwin called MSNBC host Maddow "the ultimate wonk/dweeb," and accused her of being behind his firing. "She was aghast that I had been hired and viewed me as equivalent to Mel Gibson. Another source told me, 'You know who's going to get you fired, don't you? Rachel. Phil will do whatever Rachel tells him to do,'" he said. "I think Rachel Maddow is quite good at what she does. I also think she's a phony who doesn't have the same passion for the truth off-camera that she seems to have on the air."