Scoop! Is Owen the reason for Kate’s breakup?

When Owen Wilson was talking about his big, fat crush on his “You, Me and Dupree” co-star Kate Hudson while making the PR rounds promoting the box-office dud, he wasn’t kidding.

It looks like Wilson and Hudson are an item.

On Monday, the “Almost Famous” star and her husband of 5½ years, Black Crowes singer Chris Robinson, split and gossip-hounds are barking that Wilson had everything to do with it.

Sources say throughout filming, Wilson and Hudson were just friends, but during the publicity push for the film, things heated up, with Hudson and Wilson often sharing the same hotel suite. Most recently, the couple has been hiding out in Wilson’s Santa Barbara home.

Just a few days before Hudson and Robinson went public with their separation, an insider told Us Weekly that notorious ladies man Wilson is really into Hudson. “Owen is not-so-secretly hoping she will leave Chris so they wouldn’t have to hide,” the source said. “He is falling for her.”

After the breakup, one of Hudson’s blabby buddies confessed that Hudson and Wilson are in love.

“This is not a fling,” a source told Us Weekly. “Kate is crazy about him. Owen gives her so much attention, and she loves it. [That’s why] she wants her marriage to be over.”

Of course, Hudson’s camp isn’t commenting, but Wilson’s rep issued a statement, saying, “[Anything] that suggests that the separation of Ms. Hudson was caused by Mr. Wilson … is absolutely false.”

A good man is hard to find

Speaking of failed marriages, Denise Richards says she knew about soon-to-be ex-husband Charlie Sheen’s bad-boy rep before they got married, but, like a lot of women, she thought she could change him.

“Like everyone else, I’d heard about his past, but I couldn’t comprehend it. I’ve never done drugs, never been around a prostitute, never known any porn stars,” the actress, who is more famous for being married to Sheen than for any acting roles, told Harper’s Bazaar.

As for her rep as a husband-stealing friend, Richards claims her friendship with Heather Locklear was over before she hooked up with Locklear’s estranged hubby, Richie Sambora.

“If I was still friends with Heather, I wouldn’t have crossed that line,” Richards said. “But at the same time, when Richie and I got together, I couldn’t pass it up. I know how hard it is to meet a great guy.”

Well, for once, she’s right.

Justin talks trash

Sometimes Justin Timberlake can be a real jerk.

The singer, who is doing interviews with every newspaper, magazine, talk show and company newsletter to promote his upcoming album, “FutureSex/LoveSounds,” has the nerve to dis recent “American Idol” champ Taylor Hicks.

“People think he looks so normal, and he’s so sweet and he’s so earnest, but he can’t carry a tune in a bucket,” Timberlake told Vanity Fair’s spinoff, Fashion Rocks. “If [Hicks] has any skeletons whatsoever,if, God forbid, he’s gay and if all these people in Mississippi who voted for him are like [then he takes on a thick Southern accent], ‘Oh, my god, I voted for a queer!’ It’s just too much pressure.”

Hmmm, that’s some superior talk for a guy who used to be in ’NSync, dated Britney Spears and ripped off Janet Jackson’s top during a Super Bowl half-time show.

Don’t tell me to eat

Reality show star-turned-walking skeleton Nicole Richie confronted a photographer outside a Malibu boutique Saturday after he shouted at her to put on some weight.

The “Simple Life” star was shopping at Blue Planet when a photographer yelled, “Nicole, you look disgusting. Gain some [bleeping] weight!”

A visibly upset Richie unleashed a wafer-tirade on the photog, and then, strangely, talked to a gossip magazine about it. “You don’t scream at people that they are overweight, so what makes people think that they have the right to scream at me that I am underweight? It’s upsetting and mean,” Nicole told Us Weekly. “I am not anorexic. At the moment, I was just sick of everyone constantly bothering me about how I look.”

Then eat something, Nicole! Geez.

smansfield@examiner.comentertainmentFeaturesGossipscoop

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