April 29, 2005 05:00 PM

The public canoodling continued for new couple Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes on Friday in Rome – where Cruise arrived to receive a lifetime achievement award.

Cruise and Holmes kissed in front of the cameras at Music Park Auditorium before Cruise was honored at the David di Donatello Awards, the Italian equivalent of the Oscars.

Photographers in Rome first photographed the pair smooching on Wednesday. Since then, the couple have been making the public rounds together, meeting with Italian leaders and sharing meals together, with photogs capturing every move.

Meanwhile, back in the U.S., Holmes’s father, attorney Martin Holmes, offered some positive words about the just-revealed relationship.

“I’m happy and excited for Katie,” the elder Holmes tells TV’s Access Hollywood. “She has a good head on her shoulders, and we must trust her judgment.”

Cruise, 42, and Holmes, 26, “have been dating a couple of weeks,” a friend of Cruise’s told PEOPLE this week.

The romance was confirmed by Cruise’s rep after he and Holmes were photographed together, hand in hand, in Rome on Wednesday evening.

A source says it was Cruise who made the first move: “He asked her out on a date.” And that may have been a fantasy come true for Holmes, who once told Seventeen magazine: “I think every little girl dreams about (her wedding). I used to think I was going to marry Tom Cruise.”

You May Like