Alec Baldwin Addresses James Toback Relationship
"I never knew any details of what he did that was assault in nature or rape in nature or criminally actionable," Baldwin told the L.A. Times.
Alec Baldwin has addressed his relationship with director James Toback in an interview with the L.A. Times, saying, "In my time with Jimmy, it was absolutely, positively business."
The actor has received some heat for a picture that circulated online of him with both Toback and Roman Polanski at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. Harvey Weinstein accuser Asia Argento was among those who tweeted the picture.
Toback was the subject of an L.A. Times investigation that found he has sexually harassed over 38 women. Since the story broke some 300 women have come forward to say that they, too, were harassed by the director, including actresses Rachel McAdams and Selma Blair.
Baldwin, who can be seen almost every Saturday night playing Donald Trump on Saturday Night Live, worked with Toback on the 2013 doc Seduced and Abandoned and more recently on The Private Life of a Modern Woman. When Argento posted the photo, Baldwin had responded on Twitter, “But you realize I produced that doc and interviewed Roman BEFORE these recent allegations?”
When asked about his reaction to the recent reports on Toback, the actor told the L.A. Times: "In all the time I’ve known Jimmy, I never had one conversation about his sex life, which is not unusual for me because I’m not sitting down with some guy and he’s saying to me, 'Man, you should have seen what I did last night with this girl in this hotel.' I don’t go there."
Baldwin later added: "He had an appetite for going up to women and saying salacious and provocative things to them and introducing himself with his credentials and so forth, and laying that on people to seduce them. I never knew any details of what he did that was assault in nature or rape in nature or criminally actionable. Never, never, never."
Following the weeks-long fallout for movie mogul Weinstein, Toback is amongst a growing list of men in Hollywood to be accused of sexual misconduct. Amazon's Roy Price was let go following reports of sexual harassment, while political analyst Mark Halperin was removed from NBC News and MSNBC and lost a lucrative book deal. More recently, actor Kevin Spacey addressed reports that he had sexually harassed a then 14-year-old Anthony Rapp when he was 26.
The 30 Rock star calls the disgraced director "one of the smartest" and "cleverest" people he knows, adding, "He went to Harvard, super-intellect."
Baldwin says he has spoken with Toback since the reports have come out. He concludes, "He’s obviously crushed by all of this. I did call him, and I think he understands how people are. There’s not much people can do for him now."