Sorvino on Friday lashed out at the "irresponsible journalism" behind a People magazine report quoting a producer who said Carey "threw a salt shaker" at Sorvino and then wrestled with her, after the troubled songbird showed up late to the set of their Mob movie.
"No physical fight ever occurred between us and the idea is as insulting as it is laughable," Sorvino says in a statement. "We finished the film dancing at an impromptu wrap party in high spirits and exchanged gifts and warmest goodbyes. My heart goes out to her and I am praying for her speedy recovery."
Both Carey and Sorvino's publicists acknowledged that "words were exchanged" between the costars after Carey was late to the set one day. But Sorvino's rep says the incident was "ridiculously blown up" and never turned physical.
The People story quoted Wisegirls producer Billy Blake, who said the two women got into a scuffle during the first week of filming. "They wrestled to the floor," he told the magazine.
But just as soon as the spice-throwing spat got picked up by other media, retractions quickly followed. Blake issued a statement Thursday denying knowledge of the battle. "I do not have firsthand information of any altercation between Mariah Carey and Mira Sorvino as I was not on the set that day," he said.
Sorvino released her own statement denying the brawl--and wishing Mariah the best.
"I am terribly concerned for Mariah," Sorvino's statement reads. "I enjoyed my experience with her on Wisegirls, and witnessed firsthand how incredibly talented and hard working she is; flying in and out on weekends faithfully fulfilling her numerous obligations in both the film and music industry."
Wisegirls producer Anthony Esposito, who was on the set of the film in Nova Scotia, also refuted the wrestling story. "They got along very well, and it's unfounded," he tells E! Online. "It would have destroyed my film if it were true."
Despite the denials, People magazine stands by its quote. "Billy Blake told us he had this from eight different eyewitnesses who called him immediately after the incident," says People senior editor Ken Miller. "As a producer of the film, we felt he hardly had an axe to grind."
Wisegirls, tentatively scheduled for release next February, was just one of many projects Carey had undertaken before her hospitalization last week for an "emotional and physical breakdown." Filming on Wisegirls wrapped last month. But with Carey's other new film, Glitter, and its accompanying soundtrack coming out this month, the breakneck schedule led her to leave a rambling message on her official Website before checking into an undisclosed hospital, where she's been under psychiatric care.
Carey's publicist Cindi Berger told E! Online Friday that the octave-shattering singer is "still in the hospital, and she's resting and improving daily."
Esposito says that when he spent time with Carey during the Wisegirls shoot, it was clear she had been pushing herself to the limit. After a day of shooting on the film, he says Carey would often just keep on working into the night.
"My wife and I looked at her and we could tell she was totally exhausted then," he says. "She's very grounded and very caring...but this is a person that never, ever relaxes."