By Piya Sinha-Roy
LOS ANGELES, March 7 (Reuters) – Actor Alec Baldwin said that his impersonation of U.S. President Donald Trump on NBC’s sketch show “Saturday Night Live” has revived his “dead” comedy career after he wrapped up sitcom “30 Rock” in 2012.
“I didn’t realize in the comedy terms that I was dead,” Baldwin told Reuters on Monday when asked if he felt he was entering a new era with his comedy.
“Maybe I was in a coma … now I’m waking up from a coma and now I’m ready to do some comedy.”
The actor was promoting his latest film, DreamWorks’ animated comedy “The Boss Baby,” out in theaters on March 31, in which he voices a suit-wearing baby manager of a corporation for babies who is adopted by a family to undertake a covert mission.
It has been nearly five years since Baldwin, 58, concluded his six-year tenure as the charming corporate boss Jack Donaghy in NBC’s quirky comedy series “30 Rock.”
Since then, he has appeared in a handful of movies in supporting roles, but the actor saw a new surge in popularity when he took over as Trump on “Saturday Night Live” (SNL) last October, ahead of November’s U.S. presidential elections.
Baldwin quipped that his comedy career “did die” but that “I’m being reincarnated. As Trump! Oh God!”
Viewer ratings have soared for “Saturday Night Live” since Baldwin started portraying Trump in a series of skits mocking the billionaire reality TV star-turned-politician as a dim-witted commander-in-chief with a short attention span, an oversized ego and a Twitter addiction.
Trump criticized the NBC show in December, calling it “totally unwatchable” and a “hit-job.”
Asked whether he felt playing the president took a toll on him, Baldwin said the challenge of the role was that it would “delight some people and offend other people.”
“A large plurality of the country voted for Trump as president, and I think many of them are people that are not fond of the way Trump is treated, not just by ‘Saturday Night Live’ but the comedy cosmos in general,” he said.
“I think for me playing Trump has been, it’s been a fun experience because it’s like going home when I do SNL.”
Reporting by Piya Sinha-Roy; Editing by Lisa Shumaker