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Morgan Freeman Responds to Persistent Tabloid Rumor TheWrap

After years of tabloid stories and Internet gossip, Oscar-winning actor Morgan Freeman has finally come out to deny that he has been romantically involved with his great-granddaughter E'Dena Hines and that he intends to marry her, reports TheWrap.com.

In a statement to the website, Freeman said: "The recent reports of any pending marriage or romantic relationship of me to anyone are defamatory fabrications from the tabloid media designed to sell papers. What is even more alarming is that these fabrications are now being [picked up] by the legitimate press as well."

Hines also had a comment, saying, "These stories about me and my grandfather are not only untrue, they are also very hurtful to me and my family."

The original report in the National Enquirer was published in 2009, when the tabloid quoted a family insider who said, "Morgan has led [Hines] to believe that he wants to marry her." Another source was quoted as saying, "Becoming Mrs. Morgan Freeman has been E'Dena's goal."

Freeman was moved to comment on the rumors because in spite of the three years that have passed without a wedding, the stories have not gone away.