Fox says it cut a News Corp. phone-hacking joke by Alec Baldwin from an Emmys skit to avoid being seen as making light of the scandal, Variety reports.
Baldwin was set to play a fictional network television exec in the opening bit, in which he was to make a crack about News Corp.'s Rupert Murdoch and the ongoing phone-hacking scandal in the U.K. Fox, which is owned by News Corp., said it decided to ax the joke because it took the hacking allegations very seriously.
Check out our Emmy predictions
After the joke was cut, Baldwin asked to pull out of the skit, and the network agreed. He was replaced by Leonard Nimoy
, who taped the bit without the joke.
"I understand NewsCorp killing that joke," Baldwin tweeted
Sunday afternoon. "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."
Look back on last year's Emmy fashions
Baldwin, who's nominated for 30 Rock
, will not attend the Emmys, as he will be at Tony Bennett's birthday celebration/auction in New York. He tweeted last week that he voted for rival Steve Carell
The 63rd Primetime Emmy Awards
airs Sunday at 8/7c on Fox. Tune in Monday at 8/7c for Kathy Griffin's Emmys Aftermath
on TV Guide Network.