Celebrity of the Year Finalist #9: Jennifer Lopez

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It's that time of the year again.

With 2011 drawing to a close, THG is here to present our 5th annual Celebrity of the Year Award. Before we arrive at the top spot, however, we're counting down from number-10, honoring those that delivered the best scandals, most raunchy sex tapes and most ridiculous shenanigans of the past 12 months.

The rankings kicked off last week with everyone's favorite trainwreck, Lindsay Lohan. Now, it's on to number-9 and the bootylicious artist who returned to national consciousness after years out of the spotlight... Jennifer Lopez!

J. Lo Motivational Poster

J. Lo was named a new American Idol judge in late 2010 and didn't waste any time using TV's top-rated show to get her wayward career back on track. She released a new single as soon as season 10 premiered; she quickly established herself as a panelist who, like Paula Abdul, grew emotionally-invested in contestants - remember this crying clip? - but, unlike Paula Abdul, was not insane.

Lopez offered sharp commentary and critiques without the snark of Simon or the repetitiveness of Randy. She also took full advantage of high-definition televisions to remind the world: I AM GORGEOUS.

After rising to prominence once again via Idol, Jennifer took a couple of strategic steps to ensure she'd remain in the headlines even after season 10 concluded:

  1. She dragged out contract negotiations.
  2. She was involved in a potential sex tape scandal.

Even Kris Jenner had to be impressed by these savvy moves.

Then, July hit - and J. Lo morphed back into a tabloid favorite due to her divorce from Marc Anthony. How was she dealing with the split? Did Anthony really cheat on her with a stewardess? With Jada Pinkett Smith?!? The chatter kept coming, but Lopez remained mostly quiet, staying above it all in interviews and simply saying she still believed in love.

Has she found it now with 24-year old backup dancer Casper Smart? Probably not. But these two appear to be having a good time and, after the year we just described, can you blame Lopez for wanting to have some naked fun with a guy nearly half her age?

Neither can we. We've missed Jennifer Lopez, we're glad 2011 brought her back into our lives and, like Pitbull in the image above, we're anxious to stand back and watch to see what 2012 brings for this beauty.

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Jennifer Lopez Biography

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Born
Birthplace
The Bronx, New York
Full Name
Jennifer Lopez