Ryan Phillippe hired and fired a high-powered Los Angeles publicist in the space of a few hours after his firm made up quotes and provided them to a magazine for its cover story. MICHAEL SITRICK, whose clients have included Halle Berry and R Kelly, was sacked after giving a story to US In Touch magazine regarding Phillippe's split from wife Reese Witherspoon. Phillippe has long been represented by Baker Winokur Ryder, the public relations firm that also represents Witherspoon. The firm's partner NANCI RYDER, actually introduced the couple, who married seven years ago and have two children. When the couple announced their split last week, BWR hired Sitrick to handle Phillippe's public relations duties, reportedly to avoid a conflict of interest. A BWR spokeswoman tells New York Post's Page Six, "We hired him. We out-sourced. We thought we might need the extra help, but we didn't. It turned out, smaller is better." An insider says the publicists at Sitrick's company "gave a fake story to In Touch. They did a not-kosher thing, and that's uncool. They f**king lied." In the In Touch cover story, which they touted as an "exclusive interview", Phillippe was quoted as saying, "I'm not jealous of her, that's so far from the truth. "She's someone who's very talented and works hard. I've done well, too - that was never an issue." He was also quoted as saying, "This is the hardest time of my life - I miss my family." Sitrick has hit back at BWR's claims saying, "The project was not as big as they expected...We were not fired because of any fake quote given to In Touch magazine. "We don't even know what you are talking about with respect to that." Meanwhile, editors at In Touch are furious about the fiasco adding, "We're angry. We trusted the publicists."