American Airlines is battling back after being blasted by Alec Baldwin, who was forced off one of their flights Tuesday afternoon.
“Since an extremely vocal customer has publicly identified himself as being removed from an American Airlines flight on Tuesday, Dec. 6, we have elected to provide the actual facts of the matter,” the airline posted on its Facebook page. “This passenger declined to turn off his cell phone when asked to do so at the appropriate time.”
“The passenger ultimately stood up (with the seat belt light still on for departure) and took his phone into the plane’s lavatory. He slammed the lavatory door so hard, the cockpit crew heard it and became alarmed, even with the cockpit door closed and locked,” American wrote.
The airlines said after flight attendants were asked to check on the situation, “the passenger was extremely rude to the crew, calling them inappropriate names and using offensive language. Given the facts above, the passenger was removed from the flight and denied boarding.”
Baldwin’s publicist Matthew Hiltzik responded with a tweet: “hey @American_AA: How come ok 4 other 1st class passengers 2 tweet while @alecbaldwin asked to leave while using his device? #hypocrisy.”
Alec Baldwin’s claimed his love for a Scrabble-like iPhone game got him “reamed out” and kicked off the American Airlines flight from Los Angeles to New York.
“Flight attendant on American reamed me out 4 playing WORDS W FRIENDS while we sat at the gate, not moving,” Baldwin tweeted Tuesday afternoon, along with the hashtag, “#nowonderamericaairisbankrupt”
The actor quickly followed that tweet with another “#theresalwaysunited,” and then added again, “But, oddly, 30 Rock plays inflight on American.”
By the time, Baldwin finally landed in New York Tuesday night, he was much tamer. Asked by ABC News for a comment, he replied, “You’re kidding me, right.”
The actor was telling his 600,000 followers to un-follow him by 10 p.m. last night. “Let’s play a game called Mass Unfollowing,” he tweeted. “I want to crash this acct and start again.” He has since deactivated his Twitter account.
Baldwin’s rep said the dispute with American went so far that the “30 Rock” star was asked to leave the plane.
“Alec was asked to leave the flight for playing ‘Words with Friends’ while parked at the gate,” Baldwin’s publicist said in a statement to ABCNews.com. “He loves WWF so much that he was willing to leave a plane for it, but he has already boarded another AA flight.”
The extent of the argument over the game was in dispute, but one source familiar with the incident told ABCNews.com that Baldwin was abusive toward the flight crew.
In the end, Baldwin went back to American, tweeting from a plane, “Now on the 3 o’clock American flight. The flight attendants already look…..smarter.”
Baldwin also tweeted before takeoff, “Last flight w American. Where retired Catholic school gym teachers from the 1950′s find jobs as flight attendants.”
His Twitter tirade continued from the air where Baldwin posted a picture of the Words with Friends game and the words, “Let Alec play,” followed by video clips of a cursing Irishman who hates bankers, a young Cuban ballet dancer and a cryptic, apparent swipe at Harvey Levin, founder of TMZ.
TMZ.com had reported that the initial flight’s captain asked that Baldwin be thrown off after Baldwin got up following the confrontation over the video game and slammed a bathroom door.
However, a source familiar with the incident told ABCNews.com that Baldwin did not slam the door, but closed it normally. After he emerged from the lavatory, the source said, Baldwin tried to get the name of the flight attendant who confronted him over the game. It appeared that the plane’s crew closed ranks around her, and he was asked to leave.
A second source familiar with the incident had a radically different take, noting that Baldwin clearly disobeyed a standard airplane rule to turn off cell phones before take-off.
“There is a lot that he’s left out,” the second source said. “He was abusive to flight attendants and refused to do what he was asked. The seatbelt sign went on and he went to the bathroom anyway.”
Champion boxer Oscar De La Hoya was also on the flight with Baldwin and explained his take on the incident after landing in New York.
“I actually felt Alec Baldwin was turning off his devices and he just got a little … angry,” De La Hoya said to reporters.
American Airlines didn’t respond to ABC News’ request for comment but did respond to Baldwin via twitter: “@AlecBaldwin Mr. Baldwin, we are looking into this. Please DM (direct message) us contact information.” The airline also tweeted: “Our flight attendants were following federal safety procedures on electronic devices when aircraft door is closed.”
Tweets about the “30 Rock” star getting kicked off an American Airlines flight from Los Angeles to New York began circulating this afternoon. The passenger who tweeted that he saw Baldwin getting kicked off, author Grant Cardone, said he was “told by an AA authority” that the actor was booted because he “Didn’t have his Capitol One Card and [was] Abusive to attendant.” (Baldwin appears in Capital One credit card commercials.)
Baldwin’s temper has gotten the better of him before. In 2007, he infamously left a voice mail for his young daughter calling her a “rude, thoughtless little pig.” He later apologized and wrote a book inspired by the incident.