American actor Alec Baldwin is becoming as famed for his off-air antics, as he is for his illustrious performances in film and television. Baldwin, as we are all acutely aware, has an unfortunate grace about him when dealing with the paparazzi, persistently becoming embroiled in venomous confrontations with various factions of the media, who are all too willing to return fire.
The newly appointed MSNBC talk show host of Up Late with Alec Baldwin, has been engaged in a spate of physical and verbal conflicts with photographers and reporters over the past few days.
The Latest Homophobic Insult
The event took place in the aftermath of the star’s triumph in court, where a judge concluded that Genevieve Sabourin was guilty of stalking him. The Canadian actress, whom
Baldwin had apparently met on the set of The Adventures of Pluto Nash, was charged with aggravated harassment and stalking, and was subsequently sentenced to seven months imprisonment.
Rather than celebrate his so-called victory, Baldwin was then caught scuffling with yet more paparazzi, allegedly calling one photographer a “c**k sucking f*g,” outside of his swanky Manhattan apartment.
The celebrity did not initially admit to launching the tirade of abuse, but eventually backed down and confessed to using the slur – at least in part. Taking to Twitter, Baldwin had the following to say:
“Rich Ferraro from @glaad informs me that c’sucker is an anti-gay epithet. In which case I apologize and will retire it from my vocabulary.”
Baldwin Set to Sue TMZ?
However, this was certainly not the end of matters, as Baldwin denied allegations that he used the word f*g. Instead, he vehemently maintains that he used the word “fathead.” In retaliation to TMZ’s contention, Baldwin is apparently threatening to sue the celebrity news website for suggesting he articulated the homophobic insult.
According to TMZ, Baldwin further argues that “acoustic analysis” substantiates his claim that he said fathead:
“Acoustic analysis proves the word is fathead. Fathead … Anti-gay slurs are wrong. They not only offend, but threaten hard fought tolerance of LGBT rights.”
Regardless, the scornful insults drew the attention of gay rights organization GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation). GLAAD spokesperson Rich Ferraro rebukes Baldwin’s “anti-gay slurs,” and claims the actor to be involved in the practice of degrading gay people.
As a consequence of The Departed actor’s cutting choice of words, his talk show has been pulled from its Friday night slot for the coming fortnight. In an act of contrition, the disgraced star issued a groveling apology in a statement on MSNBC’s website, claiming he never “… intended to hurt or offend anyone” with his words. The star finished off his statement with the following final apology:
“I want to apologize to my loyal fans and to my colleagues at msnbc – both for my actions and for distracting from their good work. Again, please accept my apology.”
Other Recent Confrontations
Baldwin was recently approached by a number of journalists and photographers, swarming at his heels to enquire about his latest courtroom battle.
TMZ reports that Baldwin shoved a photographer to one side, before slapping the man’s camera from his hands. Responding to the event, the photographer doggedly pursues the 30 Rock star for some time, boldly claiming to have been assaulted.
The incident, which took place on Friday, prompted Baldwin to counter the assault claim by suggesting that he himself had been attacked by the photographer.
That very same day, the Beetlejuice actor had also been approached by a local New York City reporter from FOX5, who, like all the other reporters, was asking about the Sabourin stalker case. Baldwin angrily squared up to the young man, berating him for his association with Fox; he stated “You are as dumb as you look. You are with Fox, right?”
The third and final messy conflict involved a blonde, female reporter. From video footage published by TMZ, it remains uncertain as to what prompted the explosive outburst. Irrespective, the encounter culminates in Baldwin demanding local law enforcement arrest the woman, before he yells an expletive and storms off.
After Baldwin gather what little composure he could muster, he slid back into his vehicle and attempted to depart the chaotic scenes. Alas, in doing so, he accidentally bumped into the silver vehicle parked ahead of him.
The Stark and Cooper Conflict
Back in June of this year, Baldwin offended the gay community by striking out at American journalist, author and CNN host Anderson Hays Cooper, during a radio broadcast on Howard Stern. Cooper initially stirred the wrath of Baldwin after taking to Twitter to criticize the 30 Rock star for his use of “gay slurs.” Cooper claimed that conservative
members would be vilified for publicly expressing their desire to physically attack a “queen.”
Specifically, Baldwin had called Daily Mail author George Stark a “toxic little queen,” before threatening to put his foot up Stark’s behind; he then followed up these scathing remarks by exclaiming “I’m sure you’d like it too much.”
According to Huffington Post, the 55-year-old veteran actor seemed to infer that Cooper had an ulterior motive behind his retort:
“Anderson Cooper has a job to do… And that job is to try to reinforce his credibility in the gay community after the fact that you couldn’t get him out of the closet for 10 years with a canister of tear gas. Now he’s the sheriff; now he’s running around writing everybody a ticket.”
Baldwin quickly issued a public apology for his excoriating statement, claiming that his tweets were unrelated to issues of sexual tendency.
Meanwhile, whether Alec Baldwin’s threats to sue TMZ are genuine remains to be seen. One thing we do know, however, is that we won’t be watching Baldwin’s MSNBC talk show for the next couple of weeks.
By James Fenner