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DOWN: ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER
When Schwarzenegger and his wife of 25 years, Maria Shriver, announced the end of their marriage in May, it was just the beginning of a shocking scandal – with the former California governor admitting he had fathered a child with their longtime housekeeper, Mildred Baena. "I take full responsibility for the hurt I have caused," he said, but that didn't stop Shriver from filing for divorce.
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UP: BRITNEY SPEARS
Spears's professional life is back on track, with her Femme Fatale album debuting at No. 1 and a sold-out tour to boot. And her personal life is stable and happy, thanks to longtime beau and new fiancé Jason Trawick. She was even honored with a tribute to her career at the MTV Video Music Awards. "The biggest mistake I've ever made [was] to not trust my instincts," Spears said about turning her life around. "It's just about listening to your gut in different situations."
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DOWN: KIM KARDASHIAN
It was hard to keep up with this Kardashian in 2011 – just ask Kris Humphries. After a whirlwind courtship – and a lavish wedding that garnered its own TV special – Kardashian filed for divorce on Halloween, after just 72 days of marriage to the NBA star. Fans of the reality vixen cried foul with 85% claiming the entire relationship was a showmance. Still, Kardashian insisted, "I married for love."
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UP: ROSIE O'DONNELL
O'Donnell has said about her new outlook on life. Well, she has a lot to be happy about, starting with her own talk show, The Rosie Show on the OWN network, a new relationship with girlfriend Michelle Rounds, and their subsequent engagement. "It's like you're a withering rose and the petals are falling off and all of sudden you bloom again," O'Donnell has said of her comeback.
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DOWN: THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF N.Y.
Is it The Real Housewives – or The Apprentice? In September, four cast members – Jill Zarin, Alex McCord, Kelly Bensimon and Cindy Barshop – were fired from the Bravo series, leaving only Ramona Singer, Sonja Morgan and LuAnn DeLesseps on the show. "I'm not angry," Bensimon said. "The show is on all over the world and we're still going to be on for a long time. It's like the Baywatch of Housewives."
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UP: JENNIFER ANISTON
When Aniston got her star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in July, beau Justin Theroux was there as her biggest fan. And for most of 2011, he hasn't been far from her side, standing by Aniston during a year of achievements (like the premiere of her raucous and well-received turn in Horrible Bosses). "I'm extremely lucky, and I'm extremely happy," Aniston raved about her new life.
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DOWN, WAY DOWN: CHARLIE SHEEN
Tiger blood couldn't help the embattled actor keep his job on Two and a Half Men. The setbacks continued as he went on his My Violent Torpedo of Truth tour, which was widely panned. Still, 2012 promises to be better for Sheen, who has landed a gig in a new series, based on the 2003 film Anger Management – perfect casting, perhaps?
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UP: DENISE RICHARDS
Meanwhile, Sheen's ex enjoyed a "winning" 2011. Her autobiography, The Real Girl Next Door, topped the New York Times best-seller list (and even earned a rave review from Sheen, who Tweeted, "loved it"). With a newly adopted a daughter, Eloise, rounding out her family, Richards also got another shot at acting (with a guest-starring stint on 30 Rock) and romance, with ex Richie Sambora.
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DOWN: KATE GOSSELIN
Wondering how Gosselin's brood is doing? You'll be wondering that for a while: This year, TLC canceled Kate Plus 8. "I'm freaking out. Big time," Gosselin told PEOPLE, adding that she was concerned about how to provide for her family. Her ex-husband Jon weighed in, sniping that it was time for Gosselin to "get back to a normal life."
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UP: DAVID ARQUETTE
After splitting from wife Courteney Cox at the end of last year, the actor sought treatment for alcohol abuse. "He's ready to move forward," Arquette's rep said following his stint in rehab – and that's just what he did. A fan favorite this season on Dancing with the Stars, which he credited with helping him learn about "self-appreciation and finding joy," Arquette has also found a "very honest" romance with new girlfriend Christina McLarty.
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DOWN: ANTHONY WEINER
If there was ever a perfect candidate for a lesson in social media, it's the disgraced New York congressman. After a photo of a man's bulging crotch appeared on Weiner's Twitter feed, he claimed he was hacked. (Call it junk mail?) Weinergate ensued, forcing the politician and dad-to-be to finally come clean that the photo was, in fact, of him. Weiner resigned from his post, saddening late-light hosts and comics everywhere.