Shia LaBeouf returned to Twitter on Wednesday to hit back at Alec Baldwin’s suggestion that the “Transformers” star wasn’t made for the theater. He also clearly felt burned after Baldwin likened him to a “celebrity chef,” who wants the applause, but isn’t interested in hard work.
LaBeouf was set to co-star opposite Baldwin in “Orphans,” but left the play a month before it was scheduled to begin previews on Broadway, citing “creative differences.” Baldwin made it clear that he didn’t think too highly of his former co-star’s on-stage prowess.
“Some of the greatest movie stars had really serious theater careers and still do,” Baldwin told Vulture. “And many film actors, though, who are purely film actors, they’re kind of like celebrity chefs, you know what I mean?”
LaBeouf countered with an email from director Daniel Sullivan that implied Baldwin hadn’t done his homework before rehearsals started. He presented the exchange with the caption “celebrity.”
Don’t be too surprised if Alec doesn’t look up from his script much for the first few days,“ Sullivan writes. “I suspect he’s not nearly as prepared as you are. Not unusual at all when actors have a good long rehearsal time like we have. I just don’t want it to throw you. I did a reading of another play once with Alec and about 10 minutes in I thought, ‘Oh, I guess he’s just going to read it.’“
He went on to take on the “celebrity chef“ comment more explicitly, by offering up an exchange with Baldwin.
After the actor complains that he feels tired, LaBeouf counters, “ “I’m a hustler. I don’t get tired. I’m 26, chief.”
Baldwin responds by writing, “Listen, boy. I’m not your fuckin’ chief. You got that? Ha. Hahahahaha. Let’s go.”
That exchange was labeled “chef.”
A spokesman for Baldwin declined to comment and a spokeswoman for LaBeouf did not respond to requests for comment.
LaBeouf was replaced by actor Ben Foster and sources close to Baldwin’s camp originally indicated that any trouble was between the actor and the show’s producers.
However, Baldwin has decided to weigh in on the actor’s departure, despite promising in an email LaBeouf shared on Twitter that he didn’t have a bad word to say about the young star. He told the New York Times on Feb. 21 that he was disappointed that LaBeouf had decided to share their private emails on Twitter.
And he didn’t stop there. In an interview with Vulture, he was even more blunt about LaBeouf’s theatrical defects.
“I can tell you that, in all honesty, I don’t think he’s in a good position to be giving interpretations of what the theater is and what the theater isn’t,” Baldwin said. “I mean, he was never in the theater. He came into a rehearsal room for six or seven days.”
Previews for “Orphans” were rescheduled to begin March 26, and opening night is now set for April 18 at the Schoenfeld Theatre.
The on-stage action will have a hard time equaling the 140 character pyrotechnics being set off on LaBeouf’s Twitter feed.