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As 2007 draws to a close, it's time to reflect and pay tribute to the stars who made this a year to remember. On that note, The Hollywood Gossip is announcing its 10 finalists for its first annual Celebrity of the Year award.

They've given us their best, their worst and, in a more than a few cases, their naked pictures. Now it is time for us to give a little something back with this special feature, because without these celebrities, we are nothing.

We previously profiled High Schol Musical hunk Zac Efron at #7. Now, without further delay, we present Celebrity of the Year finalist #6 … The Hills cast!

In a manner of speaking, Lauren Conrad is the straw the stirs The Hills drink. At the same time, without Lauren's smarmy and sexy supporting cast, this Laguna Beach spin-off would never have been catapulted to its massive success.

In Season 3 of The Hills, the end of LC's friendship with Heidi Montag turned into to a public feud, with conflict outside the show spilling into the media.

Suckin' Face

A Year in The Hills: Star Lauren Conrad led her life, Spencer and Heidi staged a lot of pics, Jason Wahler went to rehab and jail, and Whitney Port sure looked pretty.

Amidst rumors of the Lauren Conrad sex tape, much of the season served as a mole hunt as Lauren had suspicions that the (false) sex tape rumors of were spread by Heidi and boyfriend Spencer Pratt (both Heidi and Spencer denied it).

Combine that central theme with former star Jason Wahler getting arrested four times, Spencer and Heidi getting engaged and staging bikini photo shoots every other day, LC's friend Whitney Port stepping into the limelight, and romance rumors involving Lauren Conrad and Brody Jenner, and a hit series was born.

The drama was so widespread that even bit players such as Gavin Beasley, Stephanie Pratt, Justin-Bobby Brescia and Jenn Bunney got in on the action. It was a year to remember on The Hills, and with at least eight new episodes coming next spring, we can only hope for a repeat - and then some - in 2008.

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If you like to read The Hills spoilers or wanna know anything that's going to happen in the eight "bonus" episodes of the hit reality TV show, well... TOO BAD!

Sources say that villainous Scouple pencer Pratt and Heidi Montag - astonishingly - are still very much together and not even trying all that hard to hide it.

Spencer the Caveman

In fact, here is a nice picture of Spencer and Heidi outside Koi - ironically, acting anything but - following Monday night's epic season finale of The Hills.

Sources have also said that the pair is currently playing along with MTV's "reality" while supposedly shopping around a new, Spencer and Heidi-only reality show.

Additionally, insiders have revealed to Perez Hilton that there will be some big shake-ups on The Hills next season. Namely when it comes to Teen Vogue.

"Teen Vogue doesn't want to be affiliated with the show anymore," a source tells Perez. "But they're not obviously going to say that on the show."

Reportedly, Lauren Conrad is going to "think about quitting" and struggle with that for a few episodes. On a related note, The Hills producers are also trying to figure out what to do about Whitney Port and her full-time job at the magazine.

Other reports say that Whitney Port has been trying to get a spin-off show of her own, and while we would love nothing more, we simply can't believe that.

As for Audrina Patridge, well... we don't have any good Hills spoilers or gossip that involves her. Nothing, guys? Anyone hear anything about Audrina? Hello?

[crickets]

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The melodramatic, tear-jerking, season-ending montage on The Hills - set to Jordin Sparks' debut single, "Tattoo" - featured Spencer Pratt and Heidi Montag at a crossroads, unsure if their relationship will survive.

Judging by the bikini photos of the media whore and pimp that we come across every other day, it looks like it did. Anyway, let's recap last night's finale!

Lauren Conrad hinted all week that she made a "life-changing decision" in the Season 3 finale of The Hills, and she made good on her promise.

After passing up a summer internship in Paris to be with then-boyfriend Jason Wahler in Season 1, LC got another chance to visit the fashion capital - and this time, not even a kiss goodbye from Brody Jenner would stop her.

"I haven;t had the best relationships in the past so...  I'm scared to get into a relationship," Jenner said, upon hearing Lauren Conrad was going to Paris.

Guess they're gonna stay, like, good friends.

Earlier, Teen Vogue head Lisa Love announced that Whitney Port alone would be going to Paris to represent the magazine. But later, a need for additional help arose, and Lisa - her very tough boss - finally showed LC some Love.

After the finale, it was announced by Lauren Conrad that this spring, we'll get to see their Paris trip as part of eight bonus episodes of The Hills! Holla!

Whitney Port and Lauren Conrad visit Paris in an episode of The Hills to air this spring. Audrina Patridge, Whitney and Cauren will star in eight bonus Season 3 episodes!

Meanwhile, Spencer and Heidi's ongoing fight over wedding plans prompted Pratt to crash at his folks' house for a few days without contacting Montag.

Upon hearing this, little sister Stephanie Pratt asked what their mom and dad thought about this. Spencer admitted to her that they think he's an idiot.

Heidi then told her coworker, Kimberly, that "I feel like I'm in a relationship with a 5-year-old" and then avoided her fiancé when he stops by her office.

When Spencer Pratt finally returned to their pad, Heidi Montag was packing her bags and telling him she wants to go home to Colorado to reflect on all this.

"It's not working. I need some space," she says as they hug, kiss and cry.

What will happen on the bonus episodes, as Spencer and Heidi stay in SoCal as Lauren and Whitney Port hang out with fashion's elite at the Crillon Ball in Paris? That we will have to wait and see. Needless to say, we can't wait.

Phew! Discuss the night's events and all things about everyone's favorite non-reality reality show in The Hollywood Gossip's exclusive Hills forum!

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As last night's episode of The Hills got underway, Spencer Pratt seethed as Heidi Montag dragged him to a church to discuss their upcoming wedding.

Miss Heidi found the perfect church ... at least in her opinion. Spencer seemed more uncomfortable - and like a bigger assbag - than ever before.

But more on that loser in a moment. Elsewhere in SoCal, Lauren Conrad hit the gym with BFFs, Whitney Port and Audrina Partridge. That's when Whitney got her game on and scored herself a date a guy: their trainer, Jarett!

THE HOLLYWOOD GOSSIP NOTE: Jarett is totally this guy!

Whitney and Jarett - who was trying way, way too hard on their date, but still seems like a decent fella - enjoyed a fun time. Although no kisses were doled out at the end, so Whit was left thinking there was more of a "friend vibe." Whatevs.

Whitney Port and Heidi Montag dominated last night's episode of The Hills.

Still, it was nice to get a glimpse into the love life of Whitney Port, a facet of The Hills that is rarely explored. She got out of a relationship this May. We've heard that Whit and E! Online's Ben Lyons are dating now, but this is not confirmed.

Meanwhile, Heidi comes home from work at Bolthouse Productions to find that Spencer has packed two suitcases. They're off to Vegas, Spencer announces ... for a wedding! This weekend! Heidi tweaks, Spencer squirms, they fight, she takes off that fake-ass $125 "engagement" ring and Spence walks out.

Of course, the next day, Spencer came crawling back with a dozen roses and said sorry, declaring to Heidi that "I want to marry you... I just get stressed out when I think of the big production when all I want to do is marry you."

It would almost be sweet if it weren't Spencer Pratt we're talking about.

Coming up next on The Hills... the she-Spencer. That's right, fans. Spencer Pratt has a younger sister! As Lauren puts it, "The only thing worse than Spencer is a she-version of Spencer." Should be a quality episode... as they all are.

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Last night on The Hills, the main subject matter was - take a wild guess - the Lauren Conrad sex tape rumors! Amazing! Who would have thought.

This time, though, Lauren and Heidi finally had it out - face-to-face and IM-to-IM - over the rumors Heidi and Spencer Pratt allegedly started about the (most likely non-existent) tape featuring Lauren having sex with Jason Wahler.

The showdown took place at the Declare Yourself event - held to reach out to politically-involved young Hollywood - when Lauren Conrad and Whitney Port were covering the event for Teen Vogue and in walked Heidi Montag.

Both girls were armed with trusty companions - LC with Whitney Port, and Heidi with one of her Bolthouse co-workers - and their share of harsh words.

Speaking for the first time in months, Heidi acted like all is well, and in the past, while Lauren Conrad stewed. Montag insisted she wasn't involved in spreading rumors, though she didn't exactly deny Spencer Pratt had a role in it.

LC stared down a babbling Heidi Montag before calmly saying that she's willing to talk ... if Heidi's willing to apologize. Oh snap. Whitney Port's response after the spat: "Is this horrible for you? This must be horrible for you." A nice friend.

Heidi Montag vs. Lauren Conrad: Going at it again over sex tape rumors!

The next day, in a flashback to 11th grade, Lauren went to work only to find an iChat message waiting to her from Heidi as Whitney looked on, bemused. "We need to talk," it read. OMG. The Hollywood Gossip staff was totally ROTFL.

Despite her disgust, LC agreed to invite the evil one over to the apartment they once lived in together. In a bogus display of burying The Hills hatchet, Heidi brought Lauren Conrad some flowers and a year's supply of cheese. Seriously, you should have heard some of this girl's unapologetic apologetic remarks.

As Heidi sort of said sorry while continuing to neither confirm nor deny Spencer Pratt's actions, Lauren Conrad responded, "I want to forgive ... and forget you."

And there you have it. Elsewhere, Audrina Patridge and Justin Brescia - who we now know are broken up - hit a rough patch. Fortunately, she was too busy working assisting Sean Kingston after being promoted at Epic Records.

Audrina's (cute) co-worker played a positive role in helping our girl see there's a lot more to life than that belching, mumbling, dreadlocked loser Justin-Bobby. We can't wait for The Hills episode chronicling their final fight.

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What does a young, fun reality TV star do when she turns 21? Have a dinner with her lame "fiancé" packed with awkward pauses and boring conversation.

Yeah. Despite the best efforts of a sullen Heidi Montag to show The Hills viewers (as well as herself, in all likelihood) that a quiet dinner with Spencer Pratt was all she needed on such an occasion, Montag just can't sell this one.

She can fake her boobs, her nose, her engagement ring, her new Chanel purse (you know Spencer just got hold of a box and didn't pay for that thing), but even Heidi Montag fell short of convincing us that this was her idea of 21st birthday fun.

Whitney Port, Lauren Conrad

Luckily, not everyone is as dull as Heidi Montag, whose life less interesting than watching paint dry. Some girls from The Hills (Whitney/LC) actually do stuff!

Lauren Conrad and her Teen Vogue boss / co-worker, Whitney Port, put on a huge fashion show for the magazine, moving young Hollywood stars down the crowded red carpet and seating them in just minutes.

Despite widespread chaos and late-arriving stars such as Hayden Panettiere and Hilary Duff, LC and Whitney ran the event as well as any tandem could, and their efforts won the glowing approval of demanding supervising editor Lisa Love, as well as the magazine's editor-in-chief, Amy Astley. Team Whitney!

Meanwhile, at the famed Viper Room on Sunset Blvd., Audrina Patridge and her douchebag beau, Justin-Bobby, went to see a band called The Ruse perform.

She had planned on scouting them for Epic Records, where she works. But at an after-party, one of the band members starts scouting her, if you know what we mean. We mean he wants to get Audrina out of that oversized t-shirt!

Of course, a mumbling but semi-protective Justin-Bobby (a.k.a. Justin Brescia) tells the guy "she's pretty good" when asked if Audrina is on the market.

In moron-speak, this apparently means "hands off my woman," because the Ruse guy looks sad, and J-B and Audrina Patridge soon leave the bar together.

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In a surprising twist, this week's episode of The Hills focused almost entirely on LC and Whitney's jobs and responsibilities at Teen Vogue, and did not feature Heidi Montag on screen for a second. Episode of the year nominee, anyone?

With the all-important Fashion Week right around the corner, Whitney Port and Lauren Conrad were sent New York City by their boss, Lisa Love, to discuss the party-planning for a magazine bash at Teen Vogue's Manhattan HQ.

Upon arriving in the Big Apple, Whitney Port learns she will be all alone giving the big presentation to the management team - Team Whitney! - while LC is sent off to assist at a Marc Jacobs model casting session across town.

In front of the Teen Vogue brain trust, Whitney Port is sweating bullets in her hot dress (which raises eyebrows) as she attempts to explain her plan for the big bash to the executives, who keep throwing her harder questions she wasn't planning on! Whitney holds her own, but it's tough out there in the corporate world.

But our girl pulls through, and upon reuniting with Lauren at the hotel, learns that Lauren met Marc Jacobs himself. Like, OMG. Perhaps more impressively, she left the event without getting any guys' numbers, unlike the previous model casting event (during which she met a young fellow named Gavin Beasley).

Meanwhile, back in SoCal, Frankie Delgado tells Spencer Pratt to stop being such a little bitch (our words, not his) and call Brody Jenner to end their dude feud.

It turns out Spencer does call, but it's Brody Jenner who wants nothing to do with him. LC tells Brody how she doesn't want to be responsible for the boys' break-up, but Brody assures her it's his decision not to patch things up with Spencer. Nice.

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Reality TV depicts real people in real environments - be it Toastee Toof and Deelishis on Flavor of Love or Mark Philippoussis on Age of Love.

That said, The Hills can no longer be called reality TV.

We've already seen the infamous Spencer-Heidi LAX dropoff pics (taken mere minutes before her return) and heard earlier today from Gavin Beasley, who went on a date with LC on The Hills and said how blatantly bogus the experience was.

Now, we've come across photos of the lovely Lauren Conrad at an intimate lunch with Whitney Port... and several cameramen, sound men, boom mics, light filters and fixtures, and multiple takes. But it feels like they're not even there!

As you can see above, this how it will look on The Hills ...

... but in real life, some guys from celebrity picture agencies got these shots of LC and Whitney - and a few of their closest production staff friends and their loads of equipment - at lunch on Thursday. Puts it in perspective, no?

Of course, we still love Whitney Port. That much isn't about to change! Wonder if her reported boyfriend, Ben Lyons, was anywhere on hand?

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Enough with the Lauren Conrad sex tape rumors, already.

It's time for out girl LC to get out there and date someone.

Assault Weapons Ban

That said, what better place to get started than at a male model casting event at Teen Vogue. Working with Whitney Port, that's where Lauren Conrad met at model named Gavin - a guy she remembers she actually met before, at a similar event, and tried to set up with Heidi Montag. It's, like, a small world.

He asks Lauren Conrad out and she accepts. OMG!

At LC's place, Lauren "Lo" Bosworth and Audrina Patridge are excited about meeting Gavin. Lo says: "How fun! I love passing judgement on people!"

There's your quote of the night on The Hills, people.

The scene of the meet-up? Gavin joins Lauren, Whitney, Audrina and Lo at a beach BBQ at Brody Jenner's pad. Brody grills Gavin as gavin grills up burgers. This guy is clearly a little jealous of the new guy taking LC out on dates.

On the beach, Brody tells Lauren Conrad that Gavin is a nice guy, but a little bit boring. For LC's part, she's having fun, yet doesn't act too interested in Gavin.

Think Lauren Conrad is still a little hung up on Brody Jenner perhaps?

Lauren and Gavin go on a date to a sushi restaurant and it goes, like, okay, but just okay. On her way home, Lauren Conrad calls Brody Jenner to tell him he's right - Gavin was a bit boring. LC asks if he wants to come over and watch a movie. He asks which one. She says, "Does it matter?" OMG!

In gigantic tool news, Spencer Pratt continues to struggle with time constraints thrust upon him by Heidi Montag having an actual job. Every time Heidi must leave for a work commitment, Spencer acts legitimately put out.

Watching this guy, you just want to laugh... and simultaneously bludgeon his face and all its mysterious disappearing facial hair.

He's gotta be completely making this $h!t up for the sake of ratings. No guy actually cares about anniversaries... especially when they can't even buy a real engagement - or tell their parents they're engaged. Good riddance.

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After a week absence that tested our patience, The Hills girls returned to bring Season 3's rising, soap-opera style tensions to a new high.

  • The subject of this week's drama: Lauren Conrad sex tape rumors.
  • The creator of the rumors (or at least the person bringing them up again, months later): Notorious troublemaker Jen Bunney.

Blame it all on the Bunney, indeed.

Lauren Conrad's fair-weather friend returned to The Hills with a vengeance last night, making that annoying ass pouty face and saying "like" and "um" more times than we can count. And blaming Brody Jenner for spreading those LC sex tape rumors that we thought simmered down months ago.

Of course, to any Hills fan, the theory that Brody Jenner spread sex tape rumors about Lauren Conrad sounds crazy. Where's the motive? This is a guy who won't say a harsh word towards anyone. And his alleged involvement in these rumors is a result of hearsay from - guess who - Heidi Montag.

Yes, Jen Bunney tells Lauren Conrad that Heidi Montag said Brody Jenner made up the rumors. Looks like she's just trying to take the heat off Spencer Pratt.

Traveling the way much celebrity gossip does these days - txt msg, omg - LC gets a message at work that Jen Bunney needs to talk to her. Small talk is not a big part of the equation here, as "Buns" is quick to drop the Lauren Conrad sex tape bomb, so to speak. Poor LC. She's just trying to move on and live her life!

Slightly suspicious of Brody Jenner, Lauren confronts the Prince of Malibu and he skirts the issue, reluctant to admit that he knows Spencer did it. But Lauren starts accusing him and finally he relents, stating that he knows "100 percent for a fact" that the loathsome Spencer Pratt is to blame.

Basically, this whole episode confirmed what we've known for months. You have to love The Hills, people, there's really no show like it.

In other news, Whitney Port was adorable (yet far too sparingly used) at the Teen Vogue offices, while Lauren apologized to Audrina Patridge for being judgmental about Justin Brescia (better known as Justin-Bobby) in Las Vegas.

He had a couple of good lines while shooting pool, although they may have to start giving him subtitles, because he mumbles too much to be understood.