One of the more impressive young actors to hit Broadway in the 1980s, this dark-haired, blue-eyed heartthrob attained screen stardom late in the decade, alternating leading-man assignments with spicy character roles. After apprenticing on soap operas and in such TV movies as Sweet Revenge and Dress Gray, Baldwin made his feature debut in the barely released mystery Forever, Lulu (1987). His breakthrough year, 1988, saw him appearing in an amazing five films, showing a formidable range: as Kevin Bacon's not-to-be-trusted friend in She's Having a Baby, the benign and bewildered ghost husband in Beetlejuice, a swaggering mafioso in Married to the Mob, a slick producer in Talk Radio and a lower-class clod in Working Girl.
Baldwin played Jimmy Swaggart in Great Balls of Fire! (1989), followed by a psychotic killer in Miami Blues, the heroic Jack Ryan in The Hunt for Red October and a ghostly lover in Alice (all 1990). Then came the Neil Simon "comedy" The Marrying Man (1991); his romance with costar Kim Basinger (whom he subsequently married) and their alleged behavior during production seriously tarnished his clean-cut image (it didn't help that the picture itself was a dog). He was replaced by Harrison Ford on the Red October sequel, Patriot Games, after a well publicized disagreement with Paramount. Since then he has recreated his off Broadway performance in the film version of Prelude to a Kiss (1992) and galvanized the screen in a brief but unforgettable appearance as a profane, bullying sales executive in Glengarry Glen Ross (1992), in a role especially written by David Mamet for the film adaptation of his play. He returned to Broadway in a much-publicized revival of A Streetcar Named Desire, then returned to Hollywood to play a cocky but gifted surgeon in Malice (1993), a career criminal opposite Basinger in The Getaway (1994), and the mysterious Lamont Cranston in a film version of The Shadow (also 1994).
More recently, Baldwin has focused on his TV roles, having taken minor parts in sitcoms Friends and Will & Grace among others. Today, he can be seen in the lead role of the NBC sitcom 30 Rock.… Expand
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