We don't like to think too long or hard about what turns Russell Brand on, but televised musical extravaganzas are undoubtedly at the top of his list. He fell for future ex-wife Katy Perry at the MTV Video Music Awards in 2009, and it looks like he recently hit it off with Geri Halliwell after both performed during the closing ceremony at the Olympics.
The London Sun says the rumpled British funnyman, 37, is now dating the erstwhile Ginger Spice, 40, with a Russell confidant claiming they are "getting very serious" and are a "proper" couple.
"They had met several times in the past, but really got to know each other during the Olympics," explains the insider. "People thought Russell was joking at the time, when he said he had a crush on Geri all over again, but it was true. They just clicked. They have so much in common. He is spending so much more time in London just to be with her."
Brand made no secret of his delight over the Spice Girls reuniting for the Olympics, gushing, "It's like going back to 1996. I've got a massive crush on Geri Halliwell, too, so everything in the world was as it should be." He happily posed for a photo with Ginger (below, top right), Sporty, Posh, Scary and Baby backstage during the ceremony.
Russell and Geri, who are both committed to clean living, have been "hanging out" and texting "constantly" in an attempt to get to "know each other as friends," adds the London Mirror. No word on whether Geri, who is mom to 6-year-old daughter Bluebell, has explained that what she really, really wants is for him to get with her friends.
Anyhoo, the British pair was spied last weekend looking like a twosome while taking a tour of the Hampton Court Palace in London with Halliwell's tyke.
"They seemed like they were having a really great time, holding hands and chatting," an eyewitness tells the Sun. "It was 100 percent obvious they were a couple."
And what of Russell's recent hookup with Jordana Brewster's sister Isabella? Word is, he broke it off, and a source tells the tab, "He has been in London since the Olympics and is traveling for standup."
Halliwell, who once dismissed Brand as too hirsute ("I'd love to shave off all that crazy hair," she said in 2008. "He's really funny and intelligent but not the type of man I go for"), dropped hints about a new romance during an interview with Hello! magazine a couple weeks back.
"I'm not going into details. Right now there's nothing serious," she explained. "I was a late starter on the romantic front. I didn't start dating until I was in my 30s. I quite like having somebody to cuddle. I like that intimacy -- it would be wonderful."
Still, her camp is downplaying the hookup rumblings, insisting to the London Daily Mail, "They're just friends and have been out a few times. There's not much else to add at this stage."