French actress Julie Gayet has launched legal action over internet rumours that she is in a relationship with President Francois Hollande.
Judicial sources said Gayet, 40, who appeared in one of Hollande's election commercials last year, filed a complaint about an alleged breach of her right to a private life with Paris prosecutors on March 18.
The move came after posts by bloggers and reports on websites suggested she had become close to the Socialist president.
Hollande, 58, lives with his girlfriend Valerie Trierweiler, a glamorous journalist for whom he left fellow Socialist politician Segolene Royal, the mother of his four children.
Hollande's office refused comment. And in a statement, Gayet's lawyer Vincent Toledano said there was no basis to the rumours. "The actress Julie Gayet has instructed my chambers to take legal action over the rumour, widely disseminated on the internet, suggesting, with no foundation, that she has a romantic relationship with the president of the republic," the statement said. "She expects her right to a private family life to be respected as there is nothing to justify these claims."
Gayet has appeared in more than 50 films. She is the mother of two children.
In the campaign video she filmed for Hollande, she described him as "marvellous" but also "humble and a really good listener".
Gayet also backs same-sex marriage, one of Hollande's key election pledges that he appears determined to implement despite opposition from the Catholic Church and the mainstream centre-right opposition.