How Rumors Start

We're all anxious to see who will hook up with bony bachelorette Calista Flockhart, but nobody's done so yet. And herein lies the tale:

The "Ally McBeal" star, to be featured in next month's In Style magazine, met up recently with journalist Degen Pener, who's writing the cover story. To drum up some details for the story, Pener accompanied Flockhart on a shopping trip.

Cut to Australia, where a week later, the New Idea magazine ran a two-page spread: "ALLY'S IN LOVE!" It showed six paparazzi photos of Pener and Flockhart. "It was apparent the star was a woman so-o-o in love," the mag cooed. "The couple strolled around Beverly Hills by day, then wined and dined the night away."

A bemused Pener told New York magazine he'd had no idea he'd been photographed on the job. In all New Idea's photos, he noted, "I've got a pad of paper in my hand, I'm taking notes. We hardly look like Brad and Jennifer, you know."