Joaquin Phoenix & Rooney Mara “Found Love” On ‘Mary Magdalene’ Set

Rooney Mara, Joaquin Phoenix

Joaquin Phoenix and Rooney Mara‘s friendship reportedly turned into romance when they were shooting upcoming film Mary Magdalene.

The pair have long been close friends but it was while filming the biblical epic, in which Rooney plays the title character and Joaquin stars as Jesus Christ, in Italy last year (16) that they are said to have “found love”.

A source told the New York Post’s gossip column Page Six that the new relationship is the reason neither star attended the Golden Globe Awards on Sunday (08Jan17), where Rooney’s movie Lion was up for four gongs.

“They were holed up together in the desert (instead),” the insider added.

While images emerged of Joaquin and Rooney shooting Mary Magdalene, they were also seen spending time together off set, including sharing cigarettes on the balcony of a room at their hotel in Matera, southern Italy, last November (16).

The claims surrounding Rooney’s new romance comes after reports she has split from director Charlie McDowell after six years together. Both Rooney and Charlie’s representatives had no comment when contacted by Page Six, and the pair have not been photographed together since August (16).

Despite Page Six’s report, Joaquin’s representative has denied the actor and Rooney are anything apart from “good friends”.

“They worked on (2013 film) Her, Mary Magdalene and their next movie (Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Far on Foot, due for release in 2018),” his rep said. “They are and have been good friends for quite a long time.”

Joaquin has previously been romantically linked to actresses Liv Tyler and Anna Paquin, and DJ Allie Teilz. He hit headlines in 2014 when he announced he was engaged to a yoga instructor who had helped him “harness his hog”, but it was later revealed to be an unusual joke.