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Since the LA Times earlier this week floated reports that Paul Newman is suffering from lung cancer, the only developing news about the actor's condition is that no one will confirm it. With Newman's rep on one hand saying he is "doing nicely" and old pal A.E. Hotchner on the other acknowledging only "cancer of some sort" (alluding a few breaths later to previous surgery "in the lung area"), the AP today issued a statement saying it stands by its original report on Newman's condition.

But then we were referred over to the blog belonging to Oregonian film critic Shawn Levy, a genuine authority who's neck deep in a Newman biography and recently offered vague confirmation of his own:

I have known for a while that Newman was very ill, probably with cancer, and today the Internet is flooded with the news that it's lung cancer and that it's not good; there aren't very good sources on any of these stories, and nobody has any shocking exclusives, but given what I know I find every word of them credible. ... He's 83, and his next birthday is in January, and we can only hope he'll make it. I suspect I'll be writing an obituary before I hold a copy of my book in my hand.

Well, Shawn, when you put it like that... Though we guess it's not like it could get any sadder, anyway.

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