30 Rock's Alec Baldwin may have snagged a nomination for Best Supporting Actor at Sunday's Emmys, but the star skipped the event for a PDA-packed night out with his new gal pal Hilaria Thomas.
Prior to Sunday's show, Baldwin, 53, taped a bit for the show's opening number, but the Fox network, which aired the ceremony, nixed his portion when they found out he took a few shots at parent company News Corp and president Rupert Murdoch's phone hacking scandal.
"I did a short Emmy pretape a few days ago. Now they tell me NewsCorp may cut the funniest line. #NewsCorphumorlessaswellascorrupt," Baldwin, who asked to be cut from the sketch as a result, Tweeted Sept. 15. Three days later, the day of the Emmys, Baldwin Tweeted again: "Fox did kill my NewsCorp hacking joke. Which sucks bc I think it would have made them look better. A little. I understand NewsCorp killing that joke. If I were enmeshed in a scandal where I hacked phones of families of innocent crime victims purely 4 profit, I'd want that 2 go away, 2."
Star Trek's Leonard Nemoy replaced Baldwin in the opening skit, which omitted the News Corp reference.
But Baldwin didn't skip Sunday's show simply because his joke was axed: The actor had previously RSVP'd to Tony Bennett's 85th Birthday Gala benefitting Exploring the Arts in New York City.
At Bennett's bash, held at Lincoln Center's Metropolitan Opra House and attended by the likes of Whoopi Goldberg, Bill and Hillary Clinton and Robert DeNiro, Baldwin and Thomas, 28, packed on the PDA.
"He had his hands all over [her] the entire night," an eyewitness tells Us Weekly of the couple, who also put their love on display at this spring's Tony Awards and other NYC-based events.
Although an insider says that Baldwin (whose marriage to Kim Basinger ended bitterly) is committed to staying single, his being so public with Thomas "makes me think it might be a little more serious."