A lot happened this year, some good, some bad, and some really really interesting. By all accounts 2015 was jam packed with celebrity news stories; there were tragedies around the world and there was devastating loss, but there was also inspiring acts of kindness and grand gestures of generosity. There was (and still is) lots of political drama, a new royal baby joined the world, #lovewins as the Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage in the U.S. and women fought to close the gender gap. Climate change has been a big story, and so has police brutality, racial inequality, and immigration. And as always, there were a select few famous figures who made this year really memorable through their actions (sometimes groundbreaking, sometimes idiotic), their mistakes, their talent and their comebacks.
In a year loaded with controversial topics, moments of pure stupidity and tragic loss, these famous faces stick out from the pack. Here are 10 celebrity news stories that made 2015 truly interesting and a year we won’t soon forget.
1. Justin Bieber
Once a Belieber, always a Belieber. Right? Many people probably assumed Justin Bieber was a goner after a series of breakdowns, arrests and purely idiotic teenage antics (anyone remember when he was arrested for egging someone’s house?). But this is the year that will always be remembered for Justin’s comeback album, when he flexed his musical muscles, charmed audiences, topped charts once again, and showed exactly why he has millions of die-hard fans.
2. Tom Brady
Who could forget about deflategate, the incident in which the New England Patriots organization and Tom Brady were accused of being involved in the “under-inflation of footballs during last January’s AFC Championship game.” Initially Brady was suspended for 4 games as punishment, but that ruling was overturned due to faults in the investigation and penalty process, and now, as we close 2015 the Patriots have a pretty stellar record of 11-2 leading into week 15 of the season.
3. Caitlyn Jenner
The headline “Call Me Caitlyn” is by far one of the biggest stories of the year, as Caitlyn Jenner (formerly Bruce Jenner) introduced herself to the world by posing on the cover of Vanity Fair, and telling Diane Sawyer that she identifies as a woman, despite being born a man. The transgender community celebrated as the world began to accept and respect transgender issues, and Caitlyn was later honored with the Arthur Ashe Award for Courage at the 2015 ESPYs.
4. Lamar Odom
In October 2015 Lamar Odom (aka Khloe Kardashian’s husband and the former NBA star) was found unconscious in a Nevada brothel after a drug overdose. He was hospitalized and had the entire Kardashian clan by his side as the world watched and sent prayers, hoping for a recovery from his near-death experience. As of recent news, Odom is getting better every day after waking up from his coma, but he still has a long way to go.
5. Mark Zuckerberg
The Facebook co-founder and CEO is not new to headlines, but this year he was famous for a very different reason—he became a dad. After openly sharing that he and his wife Priscilla had struggled with years of infertility and a series of miscarriages, their little bundle of joy was born on December 1st. In a letter to their new baby girl, the new parents introduce the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, an organization that plans to “over time, commit 99 percent of their Facebook stockholdings to such causes as fighting disease, improving education and building strong communities.” For anyone keeping track, that’s nearly $45 billions dollars. Yes, billion, with a B. Call us crazy, but this is some of the best and most memorable news of the entire year, or maybe any year we can remember.
6. Amy Schumer
Oh how we love Amy Schumer, and this has certainly been a good year for her. First of all, she starred in her own TV series as well as in her blockbuster comedy Trainwreck, for which she was nominated for a Golden Globe award. But her success doesn’t end there. She has also been very vocal about her struggles with body image, and then posed nearly nude in a photo shoot with Annie Leibovitz for the 2016 Pirelli Calendar. In a caption on her Instagram page when she shared the photo, she said “Beautiful, gross, strong, thin, fat, pretty, ugly, sexy, disgusting, flawless, woman. Thank you, Annie Leibovitz!” She continued to say, “I felt I looked more beautiful than I’ve ever felt in my life. And I felt like it looked like me.” Women everywhere rejoiced and fell even more in love with this female powerhouse.
7. Charlie Sheen
After years of shenanigans (remember his #winning interview?) and a major fall from grace when he was fired from Two and a Half Men, among other things, Charlie Sheen once again made headlines this year by announcing on NBC’s The Today Show that he is HIV positive, and has known for years about his condition. His announcement shocked some, angered others (especially after admitting he has had unprotected sex since his diagnosis) and certainly garnered a lot of buzz as one of this year’s top news stories.
8. Donald Trump
We couldn’t very well publish this list without mention of Donald Trump, who has taken the political world by storm during his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination. Along the way he has been outspoken and arguably offensive, suggesting we ban Muslims from entering this country, we build a wall between the US and Mexico, calling Mexicans rapists and criminals, and making sexist and inappropriate comments against women. And yet, despite his actions, “a Monmouth University survey released Monday showed Trump on top with 41% of support from Republican and Republican-leaning voters–a new record for the New York business magnate.” You might love him or you might hate him, but as far as 2015 news goes, you definitely can’t ignore him.
After her groundbreaking album 21, which debuted 4 years ago in 2011 (when she was, appropriately, 21 years old), topped charts, Adele kinda fell off the radar and avoided public appearances, press and social media. Turns out she was just working on an epic follow-up album that would shatter records and take over the billboard charts. Her newest album 25 (again, named after her current age) “sold a record-shattering 3.38 million copies in the United States through its first week, according to Nielsen Music,” reports the NY Times. To put that number in perspective, that’s literally the only album to ever sell more than 3 million records in a week since this data was first collected in 1991. It is the best-selling album of 2015 so far, (yes even beating our girl Taylor Swift), and it was only released on November 20th.
10. Taylor Swift
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it once more: it’s Taylor Swift’s world and we’re all just living in it. This past year the world has been watching and freaking out over T Swift’s every move, and it’s mostly because she has been dominating the charts, killing it on her sold-out 1989 tour, giving us major relationship envy and #sqaudgoals. Her most recent album just passed the 5 million sales mark, she topped the list of most generous people by giving $50K to a fan fighting cancer, she got Apple (yes, that Apple) to reverse its policy regarding streaming music for free without paying artists, oh and she nabbed 7 Grammy nominations. PS, she’s only 26 years old. This year has been a good one for Swift, and we can’t wait to see what 2016 has in store for her and us, her loyal fans.