150 episodes

From WNYC Studios, award-winning actor Alec Baldwin takes listeners into the lives of artists, policy makers and performers. Alec sidesteps the predictable by going inside the dressing rooms, apartments, and offices of people we want to understand better: Ira Glass, Lena Dunham, David Brooks, Roz Chast, Chris Rock and others. Hear what happens when an inveterate guest becomes a host.
WNYC Studios is a listener-supported producer of other leading podcasts including Radiolab, Snap Judgment, On the Media, Death, Sex & Money, Nancy and many others.
© WNYC Studios

Here's The Thing with Alec Baldwin WNYC

    • Music Interviews

From WNYC Studios, award-winning actor Alec Baldwin takes listeners into the lives of artists, policy makers and performers. Alec sidesteps the predictable by going inside the dressing rooms, apartments, and offices of people we want to understand better: Ira Glass, Lena Dunham, David Brooks, Roz Chast, Chris Rock and others. Hear what happens when an inveterate guest becomes a host.
WNYC Studios is a listener-supported producer of other leading podcasts including Radiolab, Snap Judgment, On the Media, Death, Sex & Money, Nancy and many others.
© WNYC Studios

    Eliza Shapiro on School Closures, the Big Picture -- and Probably Getting Coronavirus

    Eliza Shapiro on School Closures, the Big Picture -- and Probably Getting Coronavirus

    New York Times reporter Eliza Shapiro ranks high on the list of the most powerful people in education because "no one on the education beat is a sharper – or more effective – thorn in the side of city officials."  Over the course of a lively conversation with Alec taped before the pandemic, she broke down all the major issues in education policy, from unions to charters to racial equality, and tackled Mayor Bill De Blasio's rollback of Mike Bloomberg's education reforms.

    But since they spoke, Shapiro has arguably become New York City parents' most important source of information about what's going on with the city's schools as they ground to a halt with the coronavirus pandemic.  So we called her up yesterday and asked her what she knew and how school closures everywhere affect much more than just students' education.  Plus she recounts her own likely bout with the virus!

    • 52 min
    Revealing Barry Sonnenfeld

    Revealing Barry Sonnenfeld

    Barry Sonnenfeld was among Hollywood's most in-demand cinematographers (Big, When Harry Met Sally, Misery) when he decided to make the switch to directing in 1991.  The producers were nervous, but the proof was in the pudding: Sonnenfeld's directorial debut was The Addams Family, one of the year's most successful comedies.  From there, Sonnenfeld went on to direct Get Shorty, the Men in Black series, and some brilliant TV like The Tick and A Series of Unfortunate Events.  Now he's written a memoir, Barry Sonnenfeld Call Your Mother, in which he tells with humor and compassion the surprisingly harrowing story of his childhood -- and, of course, dishes on his colleagues in Hollywood.  With Alec he goes beyond what's in the book about what went down on the sets of Big, Misery, Wild Wild West and Men in Black.

    • 39 min
    The Luminous Kelli O'Hara

    The Luminous Kelli O'Hara

    For more than a decade, Kelli O'Hara has been at the very top of the Broadway heap.  She gets called "luminous" so often that it must get really very, very tiring.  It's been a remarkable journey for a kid who grew up on a farm in western Oklahoma and cut her teeth doing repertory theater in Wichita.  She tells Alec her story, with a fascinating, surprising twist: she deeply loves Broadway but wants to branch out, and says she's struggled to do so.

    • 35 min
    Russ Tamblyn, from DeMille to David Lynch

    Russ Tamblyn, from DeMille to David Lynch

    Russ Tamblyn was born in Los Angeles in the middle of the Depression to a chorus girl and a Broadway "song and dance man."  His father had moved his growing family west to press his luck in the talkies.  Russ was a showbiz kid and found his talent young:  Cecil B DeMille cast him as the young King Saul in Samson and Delilah when he was just 13 years old.  Stardom came at 19 in Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, where he stole scenes with his goofy enthusiasm and astonishingly acrobatic dancing.  But the role that will go down in history is Riff in West Side Story.  Tamblyn took a part that could have been just a young tough, and imbued it with such nuance, such balance between aggression and vulnerability, that every Riff since has been held up to him.  In this funny, revealing conversation, Tamblyn tells Alec what it was like being part of the old Hollywood contract system (he was an MGM property) -- plus which major Golden Age director was "overrated," and why he didn't stay a movie star.  And of course, Tamblyn recounts his return to featured roles at the request of David Lynch, who cast him as Dr. Lawrence Jacoby in Twin Peaks.

    • 36 min
    The Oscars Series, Day 5: For Sama, This Year's Most Powerful Documentary

    The Oscars Series, Day 5: For Sama, This Year's Most Powerful Documentary

    This week, in honor of the upcoming Academy Awards, Here's the Thing brings you a collection of conversations with Oscar-winners -- and, today, with a pair of 2020 nominees.  They are Waad Al-Kateab and Edward Watts, the co-directors of For Sama, which is up for Best Documentary Feature.  It's a movie pieced together from more than 500 hours of footage shot by Al-Kateab, a young mother in rebel-controlled Aleppo, Syria, as government troops closed in.  For Sama is about what it's like for an ordinary, middle-class family to conceive and raise a child in a city under siege.  As the San Francisco Chronicle puts it, "For Sama is a film made with the instincts of a journalist, the passion of a revolutionary, and the beating heart of a mother."  Watts, Waad, and Waad's husband, Dr. Hamza Al-Kateab, joined Alec at a live taping of Here's the Thing at the Hamptons International Film Festival.

    • 33 min
    The Oscars Series, Day 4: Spike Lee

    The Oscars Series, Day 4: Spike Lee

    This week, in honor of the upcoming Academy Awards, Here's the Thing brings you a collection of conversations with Oscar-winners -- including one new interview, coming tomorrow, with the creative team of 2020 Best Documentary-nominee For Sama.  Today, on Day 4 of our Oscars series, it's our live event with Spike Lee at the TriBeCa Film Festival.  The two movie-veterans came prepared for a serious discussion about Place in the Sun and On the Waterfront, but get distracted very quickly.  As BET put it in their roundup of the conversation, "The iconic director held nothing back."  Spike Lee's first Oscar, shockingly, came last year for his BlacKkKlansman screenplay.

    • 48 min

Customer Reviews

Julianneofnz ,

In a room with friends

I love listening to Alec’s interviews, it feels like I’m being personally introduced to his interviewees and he has a licence to ask everything I always wanted to know. My favourites have to be his interviews with Julianne Moore, Michael Pollan and Grace Coddington.

Reviewer111112 ,

Good interviewer in spite of being a bit oily and pretentious

Alec Baldwin is clearly intelligent and the discussions can be pretty fantastic.
He does have a habit of interrupting guests as he gets excited and he does come across a bit oily and pretentious -especially when he talks about higher education. He quite often asks 'did you go to college?'
Otherwise pretty good.

antheaw ,

Compelling listening

I've taken my pick of a selection of episodes, rather than listening on a subscription basis.
Alex Baldwin is a very amiable interviewer, his conversations are insightful without probing awkwardly and he has a great rapport with each interviewee. Very informative, entertaining, and I've learned a lot about each profiled personality and their background. A listenable and well done podcast.

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