You want juicy, unsubstantiated gossip? Google "Natalie Portman" and "Sean Penn."
A Star tabloid story has linked the two actors, said they were seen making out and "constantly touching each other" over dinner. The story has been picked up by a gazillion other Web sites -- married Oscar-winner Penn, 48, hooking up with the much younger Princess Amidala, 27-year-old Portman? Irresistible, it seems. E! Network's "The Soup" has already parodied the "couple," asking "Is Natalie Portman Too Old for Sean Penn?"
Only a very few sites had a different story: Kat Giantis writes that Portman's rep says it ain't so: "We flatly deny the story, other than the fact that she joined Sean and several others briefly during their dinner," states the spokesperson. "The rest of the story is patently untrue."
The New York Post said the dinner party included "Milk" screenwriter Dustin Lance Black and that Portman left with her pal, Rashida Jones, for the "I Love You, Man" premiere. The Chicago Sun-Times, meanwhile, has linked Portman to another actor, Ryan Gosling.
I'll be interested to see if this is a tabloid apology or "gotcha" when all is said and done.
Evidently, no one has had the nerve to ask the hot-tempered Mr. Penn if there's any truth to the rumor. He might have a stronger reaction than a denial, and really, in this case, who could blame him?