Selena Gomez and Hailey Bieber squash rumors of a feud with viral photo

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Selena Gomez and Hailey Bieber made a big statement together this weekend — by posing for a photo together. Photographer Tyrell Hampton on Sunday shared the photo he took of the stars at the Academy Museum Gala in Los Angeles, captioning it "plot twist."

Bieber, whose maiden name is Baldwin, married singer Justin Bieber in 2018, after he'd had an on-and-off relationship with Gomez. She and Gomez have been pitted against each other by fans ever since.

The model opened up about the alleged feud during a recent interview with Alex Cooper on the "Call Her Daddy" podcast, putting to bed rumors that Beiber cheated on Gomez with her.

"I respect her, there's no drama personally," Hailey Bieber, 25, said, revealing that she and Gomez had spoken. "That's also why I feel like if everybody on our side knows what happened and we're good and we could walk away from it with clarity and respect, then, like, that's fine."

Still, she has been targeted for criticism and abuse online by many so-called "Jelena" fans — fans of Selena and Justin's relationship. She admitted to it getting "really dark" and said she had thoughts of "it not being worth it anymore or not wanting to be here anymore."

Hailey Bieber has spoken about the online harassment numerous times. "I could sit here all day and say the hate doesn't bug me, that the words that are said don't affect me. But NEWS FLASH: it hurts to be torn apart on the internet!!!" she wrote in a 2020 Instagram post. "It hurts to be compared to other human beings every single day, it hurts for people to jump to conclusions and make assumptions."

Selena Gomez and Hailey Bieber arrived separately at the 2nd Annual Academy Museum Gala in Los Angeles on October 15. They posed for a photo together inside that was posted on Sunday and quickly went viral.  / Credit: Steve Granitz/Film Magic
Selena Gomez and Hailey Bieber arrived separately at the 2nd Annual Academy Museum Gala in Los Angeles on October 15. They posed for a photo together inside that was posted on Sunday and quickly went viral. / Credit: Steve Granitz/Film Magic

Last year, Bieber told Elle Magazine she had to turn off comments on her Instagram posts because "people are terrorizing me."

Gomez has asked fans to be kind online, with many seeing her comments as an indirect message to stop harassing Bieber.

The viral photo of the stars may be aimed at squashing the perceived beef for good. In the photo, the two look like friends, sitting closely together, with Gomez's hand resting on Bieber's leg. Hampton's post received more than 1.2 million likes in less than 24 hours, with many commenting that it "broke the internet."

Neither star has appeared to publicly comment on the photo, nor has Justin Bieber, who recently made headlines after canceling his tour due to Ramsay Hunt syndrome, a rare neurological disorder that left one side of his face paralyzed.

The gala the two stars attended was held by the The Academy Museum of Motion Pictures, which includes exhibits on cinema and moviemaking and is a part of the organization behind the Academy Awards. A source told Entertainment Tonight that Gomez and Bieber wanted to show the word that "there's no beef or bad feelings between them anymore."

CBS News has reached out to a representative for Hampton and is awaiting response.

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