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Alec Baldwin to End WNYC Podcast 'Here's the Thing' (Exclusive)

UPDATED: Lack of funding scuttled the public radio program, but the actor will launch a weekly primetime TV talk show on MSNBC in October.

Alec Baldwin
Fabrizio Maltese
Alec Baldwin

Alec Baldwin will end his WNYC podcast Here's the Thing after two seasons, The Hollywood Reporter has learned. 

The conclusion of the podcast, which began in 2011 and has featured everyone from David Letterman to New York Times editor Jill Abramson, comes on the heels of Baldwin's deal with MSNBC for a weekly primetime program. Sources say Baldwin was keen to continue the program; the issue was securing the funding. And he may reboot the concept on MSNBC's digital platform. 

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Baldwin, who in August welcomed a daughter with wife Hilaria, has been active in New York radio for some time. Since 2009, he has hosted The New York Philharmonic This Week, which airs in New York on WNYC’s sister station, WQXR. He has also guest-hosted Studio 360 With Kurt Andersen.   

Here's the Thing offered insightful and funny free-form interviews with prominent New Yorkers in the artistic and cultural communities. The podcast has been downloaded approximately 6 million times since its debut in Oct. 2011 and has regularly placed among iTunes' Top 10 podcasts. WNYC also packaged the podcasts into a series of radio specials, which were heard on over 100 public radio stations across the country.

Baldwin's MSNBC show Up Late With Alec Baldwin, will air at 10 p.m. Fridays and is set to launch in October, though an exact date has yet to be announced. As part of his three-year deal with the network, Baldwin also will appear as a guest on other MSNBC programs.

While the WNYC podcast allowed him to hone his interviewing skills, Baldwin made no secret of his desire to host a television interview program. He had discussions with executives at NBC Entertainment -- where he has an overall deal -- about filling the late-night time slot now occupied by Carson Daly. He also met with executives at CNN.

E-mail: Marisa.Guthrie@thr.com
Twitter: @MarisaGuthrie