Kevin Bacon Kisses The Following Costar James Purefoy: Picture

James Purefoy and Kevin Bacon participate in FOX's "The Following" panel at the Winter TCA Press Tour on January 8, 2013.  Frank Micelotta/PictureGroup

British actor James Purefoy was separated by zero degrees from Kevin Bacon in Pasadena, Calf. on Tuesday Jan. 8 — when the handsome costars of The Following leaned in for a kiss during a Television Critics' Association panel for their new FOX series.

A reporter asked Purefoy, 48, and Bacon, 54, about their noteworthy onscreen chemistry; Bacon plays retired FBI agent Ryan Hardy on the trail of Purefoy's serial killer character, Joe Carroll. When the reporter wondered aloud whether the characters would ever kiss, Bacon retorted, "anything could happen."

The two men then leaned in for a smooch as the crowd laughed. "Rule nothing in, nothing out," Purefoy retorted.

james purefoy and kevin bacon
James Purefoy and Kevin Bacon Frank Micelotta/PictureGroup

After the panel, Bacon (married to Kyra Sedgwick for nearly 25 years with two kids) gushes to Us Weekly about the kiss. "It was awesome!" Bacon told Us. "How was it for you?" he asked Purefoy, standing beside him.

"Bristly for my liking, but I'm alright," Purefoy joked.

During the panel itself, Purefoy praised his famous costar. "It's great working with him. The man's a legend . . . If you're playing tennis against somebody useless, you get worse. When you’re playing tennis against somebody like him, you just get better as an actor. So every day when I'm doing a scene with him, I feel like I just get a little bit better."

Sign up now for the Us Weekly newsletter to get breaking celebrity news, hot pics and more delivered straight to your inbox!

Want stories like these delivered straight to your phone? Download the Us Weekly iPhone app now!