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Baldwin: 'Basinger Wanted to Destroy Me'

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Jun 16, 2009 | 6:27am EDT

Alec Baldwin credits ex-wife Kim Basinger with saving his life after his infamous answering-machine rant -- because he refused to let her win their bitter custody battle by killing himself.

The actor called his 11-year-old daughter Ireland "a thoughtless little pig" in 2007 -- and a recording of the voicemail message was subsequently leaked onto the Internet.

Baldwin, who was locked in a custody battle with Basinger at the time, was widely criticized, and admits he considered suicide during the aftermath of the scandal.

But the 51-year-old credits his ex with pulling him back from the brink -- because he couldn't stand the thought of handing her "victory" if he killed himself.

He tells Playboy magazine, "I spoke to a lot of professionals, who helped me... If I committed suicide, (Kim Basinger's side) would have considered that a victory. Destroying me was their avowed goal."

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