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Fox Excises Phone-Hacking Joke During Emmys Opener

Joke was made by '30 Rock's Baldwin, who did not attend the ceremony 9/18/2011 10:31:55 PM Eastern

Fox wound up editing out a phone-hacking joke from its Emmy telecast opening number Sunday night, which featured Jane Lynch interacting with the casts of comedy and drama shows. 30 Rock co-star Alec Baldwin had made the joke.

Baldwin, a nominee for best actor in a comedy, did not attend the awards, tweeting just beforehand: "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."

Fox parent News Corp. has been hammered by a phone-hacking scandal in Britain that caused it to close down its News of the World tabloid and launch an internal investigation. Parliament has also held hearings.

A Fox spokesperson confirmed Sunday that the joke had been excised, saying that given the seriousness of the phone-hacking allegations, the network did not think it was appropriate to make light of it on its own Emmy telecast.

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