Gladiators, are you ready? We’re about to blow those white hats clean off with this fun fact. Columbus Short, who plays our beloved Harrison Wright every week on ABC’s Scandal, has quite a history with none other than Miss Britney Jean Spears. Before Columbus became Olivia Pope’s (Kerry Washington) right-hand man, he was Britney’s behind-the-scenes guy, dancing backup and even choreographing her 2004 Onyx Hotel Tour. Oh, and they totally dated.

Credit: Ronald Asadorian / Splash News

The multi-talented actor — who went on to star in movies like Stomp the Yard and Cadillac Records — got his start by showing off his impressive moves as one of Britney’s backup dancers (spot him in her “Me Against the Music” video below, starting at :50), before graduating to choreographer in 2004. That same year, he also took on an even bigger role with Britney: her boyfriend. The only caveat? He wasn’t exactly single at the time.

Word got out that Columbus and the pop star were involved when paparazzi photos of the two kissing were released — at the same time that his wife was expecting their first child. Oops! Columbus and his wife eventually divorced, though in an interview with Star he maintained that he never took his relationship with Britney to the next level.

''It's true I slept with Britney, [but] we never had sex because another person was in the room at the time,'' he said. ''We shared a bed and were really close, kissing and hugging. The chemistry was magical... our feelings were so strong.''

Apparently, the affair ultimately ended when the singer’s mother intervened: ''Britney's mom, Lynne, stepped in to prevent that as soon as our feelings started to develop,'' Columbus explained. ''Despite everything that happened, I'll always remember those special moments with Britney.''

Wow! Though Columbus has since moved on and is keeping himself busy these days by starring on one of TV’s hottest shows, we wonder if Britney still crosses his mind from time to time. Or, even better, is BritBrit a fan of Scandal? So many questions.

Can you believe this connection? Sound off in the comments below.


Samantha Lear is an Assistant Editor at Wetpaint Entertainment. Follow her on Twitter and Google+!