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George Clooney: ‘E-mail Was an April Fools’ Day Prank’

George Clooney insists an e-mail notice aimed at ruining star spotting website Gawker.com was a private prank that was not meant for the public.

The Oscar winner called on stars to bombard the New York-based Web site with bogus celebrity sightings in a concerted effort to render it useless, but now claims he has no idea how his practical joke made its way into American publication the New York Post.

Clooney‘s publicist, who was credited with distributing the actor’s e-mail, claims he does not know how the e-mail, which was intended as private, was publicly released.

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In the e-mail, Clooney wrote, “Flood their Web site with bogus sightings. Get your clients to get 10 friends to text in fake sightings of any number of stars. A couple hundred conflicting sightings and this Web site is worthless.”

Gawker.com bosses have hit back at Clooney‘s plan, stating he was trying to “publicly break our hearts.”

The Web site has since issued a challenge to celebrity spotters–prizes for the first person to send a new camera-phone photo of Clooney to Gawker.com.

Clooney‘s publicist fires back, “It’s childish.”

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