These are obviously trying times for Alec Baldwin. And surreal. From the fatal shooting on his movie set from a prop gun he himself was holding, to his bizarre, tear-filled interview last week, where he denied pulling the trigger but then admitted to pulling back the hammer but still said he doesn't feel guilty:
But if there's one development in this story I don't think any of us could've seen coming, it's this:
Deadline - Alec Baldwin has deleted his main Twitter account just days after his first sit-down interview about the Rust tragedy with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos.
Overnight, the A-lister’s verified @AlecBaldwin account has been taken off Twitter and is listed as “this account doesn’t exist.” …
Baldwin has deleted @AlecBaldwin multiple times, including during the controversy over wife Hilaria Baldwin’s Spanish heritage. His reps did not immediately respond to Deadline’s request for comment.
The move comes just three days after Baldwin’s much-trailed first sit-down interview about the tragedy.
I mean, it's one thing to give a peculiar, self-serving interview declaring your own innocence. We could expect nothing less. But going dark on Twitter? For a supremely talented, but notoriously combative, narcissistic, opinionated egomaniac like this, being off social media has to be positively excruciating. As hard for Baldwin as getting booted off of Twitter had to be for the President he imitated on SNL a thousand times. I'd imagine pressing the button to confirm he does, in fact, intend to delete his account had to be harder for Baldwin than it was for that guy in "127 Hours" to hack off his arm with a pocket knife.
But Deadline might have an explanation as to what would have prompted such a painful move:
Alec Baldwin may believe it is “highly unlikely” he’ll face criminal charges out of the fatal shooting of Rust cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, but the Santa Fe District Attorney hasn’t ruled out the option. …
First Judicial District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies said Friday that “certain individuals may be criminally culpable for his/her actions and/or inactions on the set of Rust.”
Noting that she plans to “exercise my prosecutorial discretion to its fullest, including filing charges that are supported by probable cause,” Carmack-Altwies also said today that her office is “exploring various legal theories at the time.”
“Everyone involved in the handling and use of firearms on the set had a duty to behave in a manner such that the safety of others was protected, and it appears that certain actions and inactions contributed to this outcome,” Carmack-Altwies poignantly exclaimed today, sending a not too subtle warning to Baldwin and other members of the crew of Rust who are speaking publicly, either directly or through their lawyers.
The remarks by Carmack-Altwies were not altogether unexpected as Deadline has heard from a number of New Mexico sources that Santa Fe law enforcement were very unhappy with Baldwin once again speaking to media.
[Baldwin] has been asked to not comment on the shooting beyond condolences as the police’s investigation continues – requests Baldwin has acknowledged, but is clearly ignoring as he lays out his version of what went down that terrible day.
One source told us the department felt “betrayed after all the consideration given to Baldwin in the aftermath of the shooting.” Another law enforcement source said that “Baldwin is testing the department’s patience and becoming a distraction to the ongoing investigation.
Yeah, about that. Here's the thing. When there's been a death that might actually be a murder, and the people with the sworn duty to investigate said death tell the witnesses and possible suspects in it to not talk about it, that's not a request. For sure they don't expect that you'll be popping up on ABC in primetime to chat about it for the entertainment of everyone not watching "Thursday Night Football" or "Annie Live." And I think we can say without fear of contradiction, they don't appreciate you shooting off your mouth like you shot off the weapon with that "highly unlikely" horseshit.
Besides, District Attorneys are the most political animals in all of politics. They live for them. A Mary Carmack-Altwie has to prosecute thousands of low level drug dealers and money launderers hiding behind their Saul Goodman-like lawyers before she can get a high profile case like this one. One that's going to guarantee her face time and name recognition among the voters who otherwise would never have heard of her. So she'll be the one deciding what's "highly unlikely" and what isn't. Regardless of how much Baldwin stole "Glengarry Glen Ross" from two generations of brilliant actors or how he wears the shit out of a tuxedo.
That act might play in Los Angeles, but not in Santa Fe. So you're doing yourself no favors by talking about it publicly. And a guy with an ego like Baldwin's can't have a Twitter account and just decide not to use it. He's got no choice but to bite down on a leather belt and just lop that thing off before he gets the DA even more pissed off at him.
It's been well over a month since the shooting and I can't shake the feeling this story is only just beginning.