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TV Column
Posted at 02:16 PM ET, 04/16/2012

Alec Baldwin tells Washington crowd he will stay with ‘30 Rock’ through next year


Alec Baldwin as Jack Don­aghy on “30 Rock.” (NBC - ALI GOLDSTEIN)

Kicking off Alec Baldwin Week in Washington at a National Press Club luncheon Monday, the “30 Rock” star confirmed — as reported here last week and back in January — that he is signed to star on the critically acclaimed NBC’s comedy series for a seventh season.

He also said the show is going to end next year. By that, we assume he means 2013, which would suggest that NBC — which has so far been mum regarding the show’s pickup for next season — has gone ahead and ordered it because this season ends in May, whereas next season begins in fall of ’12 and ends in May ’13.

My head hurts.

On background, NBC sources tell the The TV Column that there is no development with regard to an NBC pickup of the show and that we’ll have to wait until NBC announces its new prime-time schedule to advertisers the week of May 13.

On Monday, Baldwin said he originally took the “30 Rock” gig — in which he plays NBC chief Jack Don­aghy — because it’s exec-produced by Lorne Michaels. (Baldwin holds the record as most frequent guest-host on Michaels’ NBC late-night sketch-comedy show “Saturday Night Live”). And also because it was going to be on NBC, reports The Washington Post’s Amy Argetsinger.

NBC, Baldwin added, is the “greatest of the three networks.”

No one in the room had the heart to tell him there are four major broadcast networks. No. 4 is known as Fox.

NBC is in a “predicament” these days, Baldwin observed, by which we assume he meant “fourth-placed in the ratings.”

“They need to scrape all the paint off the building and start over,” Baldwin said, correctly. Later, he clarified, “They’re probably going to have to cancel most of their shows.”

Baldwin’s luncheon appearance became a hot ticket after he lobbed a series of angry tweets last week about his leaving NBC just in time. That latest Baldwin outburst erupted when he discovered a crew from the “Today” show camped outside his apartment. The NBC morning show was covering the story of the Canadian actress busted for allegedly stalking him after news got out that Baldwin had gotten engaged to a 29-year-old yoga instructor.

After Baldwin’s tweets went viral, NBC clarified last week that its real-life chairman, Bob Greenblatt, got it right in January, when he told a gaggle of reporters at Winter TV Press Tour 2012 that NBC had re-upped Baldwin for “30 Rock’s” seventh season.

Baldwin was referring to the fact the network had not yet announced whether “30 Rock” is being renewed for next season.

Baldwin was also set to speak at the annual Nancy Hanks lecture at the Kennedy Center on Monday night. On Tuesday, he’s the ranking A-list celebvocate for Arts Advocacy Day on Capitol Hill.

By  |  02:16 PM ET, 04/16/2012

 
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