2005: The 10 Biggest Tabloid Stories of the Year
Hell hath no well-crafted PR campaign like a woman scorned Jilted former Friends star Jennifer Aniston kept a dignified silence at the beginning of the year, letting the love triangle clich√às do the talking for her. Her ex, Brad Pitt, came off as a heartless cad who left her for a younger woman who would have his babies. As the other woman, Angelina Jolie√≠s bisexual, brother-kissing and blood-fetishizing past made her the kind of villainess that no amount of United Nations do-gooding could redeem. When Aniston finally went public in a Vanity Fair cover story, it was essentially a deification of the star. She ended 2005, topless, on the cover of GQ, as the magazine√≠s first female Man of the Year. But even the best spin can√≠t overcome everything: Derailed did just that and Rumour Has It that her latest film really sucks, too.
√¨I love this woman!√Æ
Let√≠s reminisce: Approximately 10 minutes after meeting Katie Holmes, Tom Cruise leapt on Oprah√≠s couch, declaring his love for the former Dawson√≠s Creek star, who is 16 years his junior. Holmes subsequently dumped her friends, began her conversion to the Church of Scientology and sprouted strange facial sores. Cruise then appeared on the Today show and tore into Endless Love co-star Brooke Shields for taking drugs for her post-partum depression. Then, eight weeks into his relationship with Holmes, he proposed on the top of the Eiffel Tower, announcing it at a conveniently assembled press conference just moments later. Within weeks, Holmes was pregnant and Cruise bought her a sonogram machine (er, flowers would have been nice, too). Then, in November, he fired his sister, Lee Anne DeVette, who had been working as his publicist. Even the most ga-ga entertainment media couldn√≠t keep up with Cruise√≠s aggressively manic antics, and normally off-limits questions about his ties to Scientology and rumours about his sexuality began to emerge, souring the public on the formerly bankable star. Dude, when celebrity-molesting US Weekly doubts the authenticity of your relationship, you√≠re really screwed.
Skinnier is the new skinny
The incredible shrinking figures of Nicole Richie, Lindsay Lohan and Mary-Kate Olsen had the entertainment media raising concerns about eating disorders √≥ and, yes, that would be the same entertainment media that once congratulated Ren√àe Zellweger for being √¨courageous√Æ enough to gain 30 pounds in order to wear a size 10 in Bridget Jones√≠s Diary. After making a comeback of sorts in the so-so TV series Fat Actress (which skewered Hollywood for its obsession with women√≠s weight), Kirstie Alley became a spokesperson for Jenny Craig and lost 50 pounds. And just 10 weeks after giving birth, model Heidi Klum strutted the Victoria√≠s Secret catwalk. In a thong. Her secret? She just √¨naturally√Æ lost a pound a week.
It√≠s hard to decide who√≠s stranger. Is it Michael Jackson, who showed up to his child molestation trial in pyjamas and admitted in his own defense that he had sleepovers with young children, then moved to Bahrain, where he caused a scene in a Dubai shopping mall by entering a woman√≠s washroom? Or is it the fan who released a crateful of white doves when Jackson was acquitted?
Kate Moss. Photo Evan Agostini/Getty Images.
Kate Moss. Photo Evan Agostini/Getty Images.
Scandal Alert: Sex, drugs and√ñ spiritual quests?
Despite the open secret of widespread drug use (how else could the models remain so licorice-stick thin?), the fashion industry demonstrated its haute hypocrisy when Kate Moss lost several contracts √≥ H&M and Burberry among them √≥ after being featured on the cover of a British tabloid snorting coke. Post-treatment, Moss√≠s real rehab has already begun: she√≠s been featured on the cover of Vanity Fair and stars in a new commercial for Virgin cell phones that is a sly send-up of her fall from grace. Jude Law has almost completed his own public opinion probation. After being caught by one of his kids getting busy with the nanny, Law was dumped by his fianc√àe, Alfie co-star Sienna Miller. The pair have since reportedly reconciled. Finally, just before he was to start shooting the third season of his hit sketch show (a deal worth $50 million US), comedian Dave Chappelle went AWOL. He later surfaced in South Africa, where he said he was on a spiritual retreat.
What√≠s in a name?
Oh, Ben Affleck and J.Lo, what have you wrought? At first, the Bennifer thing was kind of clever, but now, after TomKat, Brangelina and Vaughniston, the whole cutesy name meld is just annoying. (Granted, the dubbing of the Lindsay Lohan-Jared Leto relationship as √¨Jordan Catalohan,√Æ after Leto√≠s My So-Called Life heartthrob character, is pretty inspired.) Can there also be a moratorium on weirdo celebrity baby names in 2006? Nicolas Cage (father of Kal-el) and Penn Jillette (father of Moxie Crimefighter), that means you.
Flirting with disaster
The year began with the world stunned by the aftermath of the tsunami and ended with it reeling from another year of tragedy that included the London terrorist attacks, Hurricane Katrina and the earthquake in Kashmir. Celebrities stepped up by getting political, in big-scale charity events, like Bono and Bob Geldof√≠s series of Live 8 concerts to raise awareness about poverty. Oprah Winfrey gave $10 million of her own money to hurricane relief efforts and put FEMA to shame by getting water, food and other supplies to survivors often faster than the federal agency. An increasingly earnest Sean Penn filed news reports from the Middle East and New Orleans. And CNN newsman Anderson Cooper broke the code of journalistic objectivity with his emotional and often critical reporting of the U.S. administration√≠s handling of Hurricane Katrina. But it was Kanye West who really summed up the unprecedentedly political year of celebrity with a little ad-libbing during a televised Hurricane Katrina benefit (see Celebrity Quotes of the Year below).
They said it wouldn√≠t last and, well, it didn√≠t
Couples who called it quits in 2005 included: Jennifer Aniston and Brad Pitt, Nick Lachey and Jessica Simpson, Nicole Richie and DJ AM, Paris Hilton and Paris Latsis, Rene√à Zellweger and Kenny Chesney.
When life gives you lemons, make lemon-zest and herb-encrusted trout
How many people can get out of jail and immediately star in two television shows, land a book contract, turn a handmade, prison-crocheted poncho into an instant fashion classic and become even more popular as an ex-con than they were before? Say what you will about Martha Stewart√≠s ambition, perfectionism and drive (and if you were being completely honest, you know if she were a man all those qualities would be seen as √¨good things√Æ), but no scandal-plagued celebrity has ever had such a comeback. Sure, her version of The Apprentice tanked, but the domestic goddess is bound to have many more tricks up her perfectly ironed sleeve. As she recently explained to Fortune magazine, √¨I cannot be destroyed.√Æ
Canada is in the hizz-ouse. Show it some love!
Canadian exports like Nickelback, Arcade Fire, Lost√≠s Evangeline Lilly, Arrested Development√≠s Will Arnett and The Family Stone√≠s Rachel McAdams made a splash in the U.S. this year. And fellow Canadian J.D. Fortune, a former Elvis impersonator, turned out to be a pretty good Michael Hutchence impersonator as well. He beat out 14 other competitors to front Australian band INXS on the reality show Rock Star: INXS. At the Canadian Live 8 concert, geezer rockers like Gordon Lightfoot and Neil Young stole the show. And to keep you up-to-date on all these Canuck celebrities, the country now boasts four daily entertainment shows √≥ Global√≠s ET Canada, CHUM√≠s Star! Daily, Sun TV√≠s Inside Jam and CTV√≠s eTalk Daily √≥ which to many people feels like four too many.
CELEBRITY QUOTES OF THE YEAR
√¨There√≠s a sensitivity chip that√≠s missing.√Æ
Jennifer Aniston on ex-husband Brad Pitt posing with Angelina Jolie as a married couple for W magazine
√¨Matt, Matt, Matt, Matt, Matt, Matt, you don√≠t even√≥you√≠re glib. You don√≠t even know what Ritalin is… You don√≠t know the history of psychiatry. I do.√Æ
Tom Cruise to Today host Matt Lauer
√¨The two of us were on fire every time we sat down [to write music].√Æ
Paul McCartney on John Lennon
√¨I think my work √≥ the activism √≥ will be forgotten. And I hope it will. Because I hope those problems will have gone away.√Æ
Bono, Time magazine√≠s Man of the Year (along with Bill and Melinda Gates), on his political activism
“If you can’t get a star, wait, you want Tom Cruise and all you get is Jude Law, wait, it’s not the same thing. Who is Jude Law? Why is he in every movie I have seen in the last four years? Even if he’s not acting in it, if you look at the credits he makes the cupcakes or something.”
Oscar host Chris Rock
“Forgive my lack of humour. Jude Law is one of our finest actors.”
Oscar presenter Sean Penn defends his fellow thespian√≠s honour
√¨The time has finally come to share our wonderful news that we are expecting our first child together.√Æ
Proud parents-to-be Britney Spears and Kevin Federline
√¨Hopefully mine and Nick√≠s story will continue for the rest of our lives, like what we vowed, through sickness and in health.√Æ
Jessica Simpson, denying rumors of marital trouble, just weeks before she separated from Nick Lachey
√¨This is possibly the most shameful situation I’ve ever gotten myself in my life, and I’ve done some pretty dumb things in my life. So to actually make a new number one is spectacularly stupid.√Æ
Russell Crowe apologizes for going Cinderella Man on a hotel concierge
√¨This frozen embryo that is in New York is my child waiting to be brought to life.√Æ
Celine Dion on her desire to expand her family
√¨You√≠re just not right for our band, INXS.√Æ
Band member Tim Farriss on Rock Star: INXS
Prince Charles to Camilla Parker Bowles
√¨George Bush doesn√≠t care about black people.√Æ
Kanye West, at a televised benefit show for Katrina victims
Ah, what a year it has been!
2005: The 10 Biggest Tabloid Stories of the Year