In an interview with USA Today published Tuesday, "30 Rock" star Alec Baldwin talked about how working on the Emmy-winning NBC sitcom -- which is now in its last season -- provided him with stability after his messy divorce from actress Kim Basinger.
"The television show, in terms of lifestyle, was a real harbor for me at a time when I needed something more familiar and simple," he said. "I'd gotten divorced. I was in this really tough custody battle. I needed something to be really smooth in my life. This was the smoothest job I ever could have had, in terms of the way I was accommodated with my schedule. The TV show has been [like] being tied up in the harbor. Now I'm going out in the open water. It's tricky. It's thrilling but tricky."
Basinger filed for divorce from Baldwin in 2001 after seven years of marriage. They finalized their split in 2002, but their bitter custody battle over daughter Ireland lasted much longer. In 2007, Baldwin told "The View" co-hosts that the infamous "rude, thoughtless, little pig" voicemail he left for his then-11-year-old daughter was a result of "deep and seemingly endless frustration" with his ex.
But the "30 Rock" actor is hardly the first celebrity to benefit from keeping busy after a tough divorce. Click through the slides below for five other stars who got back to work after their splits.
In the wake of her public split from Jesse James in 2010, Sandra Bullock said she doubted whether she'd ever return to acting. The actress confided in the AP that she was "perfectly content to be permanently broken" at the time. "I honestly didn't think I was in a place where I wanted to work or wanted to step out of where I was," Bullock said. "I wasn't prepared. But the opportunity was louder than my head." The film opportunity that lured Bullock back to the big screen? Director Stephen Daldry's adaptation of "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close."
After her own divorce from Tom Cruise in 2001, Nicole Kidman went to work on "The Hours," taking on the role of writer Virginia Woolf in the ensemble film. Kidman, who suffered a miscarriage shortly after her split from Cruise, said that the opportunity to play the suicidal novelist came at just the right time. "This role came along when I needed to play her...I was raw enough and open enough to play it," the actress told Sky News. "Roles fall into your lap at certain times when it's meant to happen. I was lucky to have this role at this time." A year later, the Aussie actress walked away with an Oscar for Best Actress for her portrayal.
Arnold Schwarzenegger laid low after reports emerged that he had fathered a child with former household staffer Mildred Baena. But in July 2011, a week after wife Maria Shriver had filed for divorce, Schwarzenegger revealed that he would be getting back to work. His first post-split project? The Lionsgate film "The Last Stand," where the action star will play a border-town sheriff who battles a notorious drug kingpin on the lam. The film, set to be released in January 2013, is the action star's first major movie since 2003's "Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines."
Before she was Nick Cannon's better half and mom to twins "Roc" and "Roe," Mariah Carey was married to music exec Tommy Mottola from 1993 to 1998. After the split, Carey recorded her seventh studio album, "Rainbow," which she said chronicled her "emotional roller coaster ride of the past year."
Jack White and British model Karen Elson made their split known in June 2011. The rocker said he spent the next six months writing the bulk of the songs that appeared on his critically lauded album, "Blunderbuss." And though divorce and heartbreak seem to loom large on the album, White cautions against too much close reading. "With any record I make, everything that's gone on in my life, not just in the last year but in the last ten years, is up for grabs... Any song that people think is about divorce could just as easily be about me and Meg," White recently told Uncut Magazine, referencing his first divorce, from former White Stripes bandmate Meg White. "If it's about a girl, it could be about 12 diferent girls."