When “30 Rock” star Alec Baldwin got kicked off a plane this week for refusing to turn off his cell phone, he may have grounded his chances of winning a record sixth Screen Actors Guild award. Baldwin’s bad press couldn’t have come at a worse time as SAG nominating ballots are being completed. Even if he does reap a bid, the controversy could carry over to the main voting period.
For five consecutive years (2006-2010), Baldwin has trounced his competition in the Comedy Male Actor race. Compare that to Sean Hayes (“Will & Grace”) who won three times, while “Frasier” co-stars Kelsey Grammer and David Hyde Pierce racked up 16 nominations between them but only secured one win (for Pierce in 1996).
There are three other factors that could keep Baldwin from winning again. NBC benched “30 Rock” for the fall season. Only 13 episodes of the series aired this calendar year — the last having premiered way back in May — which is a far cry from its normal 20-plus episode showing. For voters, “30 Rock” could be out of sight, out of mind.
Steve Carell (“The Office”) could contend for a final time having left the series last spring. Baldwin’s success kept Carell from ever winning this race. Finally, SAG lumps lead and supporting TV performers into the same category, which means Baldwin could be facing off against the red-hot men of “Modern Family” (Emmy champs Eric Stonestreet and Ty Burrell as well as Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Ed O’Neill).