By Lorena Blas and Mary Cadden, USA TODAY
In 2012, a reality TV star reigned in the world of celebrity magazine and news website coverage. Yes, she even ranked higher than real-life royalty. USA TODAY examines the year's top newsmakers, according to our Celebrity Heat Index, which measures media exposure.
1. Kim Kardashian (3,809). The reality TV star ends 2012 with new man Kanye West joining family festivities and an announcement that a baby is on the way. That happy news trumps the way she started 2012: still stinging from the collapse of her brief marriage to NBA player Kris Humphries.
2. Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge (3,569). It's been a year of firsts for Prince William's wife: a companion pup named Lupo, a trip to Asia and the Pacific Rim, a dispute with tabloids and a bout of acute morning sickness, prompting an early pregnancy announcement.
3. Jennifer Aniston (2,682). The movie actress remains a tabloid darling, and attention builds after Justin Theroux puts a ring on her finger. Then the baby-bump watch speculation ensues.
4. Kristen Stewart (2,356). She goes from movie heroine to real-life vixen in the eyes of some as her scandalous affair with married director Rupert Sanders leads to a breakup with her Twilight leading man Robert Pattinson. In the end, she and Pattinson appear to have mended their wounds and reunited.
5. Angelina Jolie (2,306). In April, she shows up at a Los Angeles museum with a bright, shiny bauble on her ring finger, and hysteria breaks out: She and longtime companion Brad Pitt finally are engaged.
6. Robert Pattinson (2,221). See No. 4.
7. Kourtney Kardashian (2,123). The birth of daughter Penelope in July is the highlight of her year as she and Penelope's dad, Scott Disick, remain tabloid staples with speculation about breakups and reunions.
8. Katie Holmes (2,048). Just days before husband Tom Cruise turns 50 in July, she shares her own blockbuster news: She has filed for divorce from the movie star. She sets out to prove she and daughter Suri will be just fine with daily photo ops in New York.
9. Jessica Simpson (1,975). The singer has been productive on the home front, beginning the year pregnant with baby girl Maxwell and ending it pregnant with baby No. 2.
10. Tom Cruise (1,925). See No. 8.
Actor: Robert Pattinson
Runner-up: Tom Cruise
Both actors are blindsided by their leading ladies, Pattinson with a betrayal and Cruise with a breakup.
Actress: Jennifer Aniston
Runner-up: Kristen Stewart
The actresses continue their relationships with Theroux and Pattinson despite a bump or two.
Musician: Jessica Simpson
Runner-up: Katy Perry
Simpson appears to be settling down with baby Maxwell, and Perry has found a new lease on life after divorce.
Reality TV star: Kim Kardashian
Runner-up: Kourtney Kardashian
Kim often is photographed with her man, Kanye West, while Kourtney often is photographed with her little man, Mason, and daughter Penelope.