Just good friends? Bristol's Oliver! star Samantha Barks enjoys lunch with Russell Crowe
Fresh from her appearance at the Bristol Hippodrome as Nancy in the musical Oliver!, Samantha Barks has been linked with her Les Miserables co-star Russell Crowe after they were spotted having lunch in Los Angeles.
The Daily Mail reports that the pair were seen having a "very public" lunch date, but stopped short of any overt shows of affection.
The Mail admitted it was possible the two were "just good friends" - but said they seemed "very comfortable together".
Miss Barks, who wowed Bristol audiences as Nancy, was been asked to sing at the Oscars following her performance in the hit film Les Miserables and had to cut her Bristol stint in the show short.
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The 22-year-old actress, whose heart-wrenching portrayal of Eponine in the movie caught the eye of theatregoers and critics alike, performed in a special tribute at the ceremony.
It is not the first time that she has been linked with 48-year-old Mr Crowe.
The Mail reports that Australia's New Idea magazine claimed that Miss Barks has developed a ‘special relationship’ with the Gladiator actor.
An insider told New Idea magazine that at the Oscars after-party: "She was continually touching his sleeve, giggling and sitting in awe of his every word, and he was lapping up every moment."