HOLLYWOOD was gripped with fear last night after a womanising A-list actor was diagnosed with HIV.
The superstar, who The Sun is choosing not to name, has had a host of high-profile sexual partners.
His lawyers are believed to be aware of the situation and preparing for a raft of potential legal claims from previous lovers.
The actor’s list of exes includes an award-winning actress, a religious movie star, a top Hollywood personality with a controversial past, a TV star, a media personality and a glamour model.
Last night a US showbiz insider said: “It has now become common knowledge that this star is HIV positive, something he has known for a number of years.“His lawyers are bracing for the threat of potential action.
“The reality is that if he’s knowingly put women at risk then that’s disgusting and it’s only a matter of time before that becomes public.”
Some friends of the actor have privately encouraged him to open up about his condition, but he has so far refused.
A source said:
“Lots of people close to him have suggested he face this situation head-on and own it publicly.
“Obviously it would be a huge story, but the reality is HIV is entirely treatable in this day and age and shouldn’t impact his ability to work or lead a normal life.
“It could be a game-changer in the understanding of HIV given that he’s a straight man.”
However the star is said to be paranoid his entire career would become defined by the diagnosis and that he could open himself up to costly legal action from ex-partners accusing him of recklessly putting their health at risk.
The source added: “He’s distraught about the possibility of the illness becoming a defining quality of his career.
“He’s also concerned a lot of exes and previous one-night stands could look to sue.”
Award-winning actress: Winona Ryder
Stunning movie star: Kelly Preston (a devout Scientologist)
Celebrated media personality: Brooke Mueller??
Celeb with chequered history: Heidi Fleiss
TV show favorite: Robin Wright
Busty glamour model: Stephanie Seymour