Variety Editor in Chief Andrew Wallenstein speculates that the new MSNBC show, Up Late with Alec Baldwin, may be the actor’s way of establishing himself for a future political run.
Baldwin has offered the idea before; his most recent gesture in that direction came in January 2012 when he spoke with Piers Morgan about a possible run on CNN.
Baldwin’s new show premieres at 10 p.m. EST tonight, Oct. 11 Wallenstein notes the traditional method of starting with a TV opportunity and launching a political candidacy from there with examples such as Pat Buchanan and Eliot Spitzer.
Wallenstein breathlessly states of Baldwin that he is a much-admired figure, “As beloved as he is, the actor needs a forum that can put some distance between the Twitter-era tabloid tempest he’s become and the man he needs to be. Which is what makes “Up Late” such a brilliant move for MSNBC: Given Baldwin has proven himself to be constitutionally incapable of staying out of trouble for too long, his consistent controversies will provide free publicity for a program that people will tune into just to see if he explodes on air, too.”
Wallenstein lists the most recent egregious examples of Baldwin’s insane temper, such as tweeting nastily at fellow MSNBC hack Joe Scarborough, then deleting them and hurling homophobic insults at British reporter George Stark for suggesting Baldwin’s wife was tweeting at the funeral of James Gandolfini.
Wallenstein concludes, “Maybe that’s all just delusional ramblings that are standard for the narcissism necessary to succeed in Hollywood. And maybe ‘Up Late’ should be dismissed as just another side project for a guy who moonlights almost as much as champion dilettante James Franco. But don’t be surprised when Baldwin gives up his day once he sees an opening to higher office.”