Jack Nicholson ‘retirement’ buzz causes a stir

Who knows if Jack Nicholson, one of Hollywood’s coolest actors ever, is calling it quits. But the mere possibility had a lot of people worried on Wednesday.

Celeb gossip site Radar Online started the chatter with an “exclusive” report saying the 76-year-old, three-time Oscar winner has retired from acting because his memory isn’t what it used to be. “Jack has memory issues and can no longer remember the lines being asked of him,” a “well-placed” insider says.

Several other sites, including USA Today and the New York Daily News, picked up the story, too.

Radar says the legend hasn’t worked since 2010′s How Do You Know, co-starring Reese Witherspoon and Owen Wilson. In addition, the star reportedly wanted to retire as quietly as possible. So much for that.

As expected, his fans mourned his “retirement” on Twitter, with one calling it “sad sad news” and another urging the actor, who has enjoyed a 50-year career, to “rest easy.”

But like most rumors in Hollywood, this story has been denied, but not by Nicholson.

NBC News’ Maria Shriver told E! Online that the rumor is false, and he doesn’t suffer from memory loss or dementia. An unnamed source says Nicholson is still reading scripts.

Whether he is or isn’t, his career is legendary, and we’ll likely still see him courtside at Lakers games. Take a look back at the best of Nicholson.

Mike DeSalvo