The weird and wonderful world of showbiz did not disappoint when it came to some of the global celebrity stories that made the headlines in 2019.
A couple of days into 2019, one of the biggest scandals began to emerge with the release of documentary Surviving R Kelly.
While rumors had been swirling ever since the singer’s marriage to a 15-year-old Aaliyah, it wasn’t until the release of the Netflix show, giving voice to R Kelly’s alleged victims, that the allegations became global news. Now, the 52-year-old is facing two separate trials next spring.
Liam Neeson found himself in hot water when he admitted that, after someone close to him had been raped by a person of colour, he found himself hoping for a black man to “come out of a pub” and come at him so that he could “kill him”.
Neeson said he was trying to address his own bigotry by revealing the story, but that was definitely not how it was received, and the public backlash was substantial.
It was also a rough month for Lady Gaga after it emerged she and fiancé Christian Carino had split.
Westlife fans rejoiced as the band released new music for the first time in 10 years. After a well-received stadium tour, the group dropped new work throughout 2019, such as ‘Hello My Love’, ‘Better Man’, and ‘My Blood’.
New album Spectrum would later drop in November, along with news of a 2020 stadium tour.
April was the month that Avatar lost its title as the top box office movie of all time when Marvel’s Avengers: Endgame crossed $2.79bn at the box office.
Record breaker Adele and husband Simon Konecki also called time on their relationship. A spokesperson for the singer said the pair split amicably and are “committed to raising their son together lovingly”. The pair welcomed son Angelo in October 2012.
The British royal family got a little bigger when Harry and Meghan welcomed Archie into the fold.
In another surprise, actress Sophie Turner (aka Sansa Stark) and her American partner, singer Joe Jonas, tied the knot in Las Vegas. While the pair kept the nuptials secret, they later held a second wedding ceremony in France.
After a long, difficult battle with throat cancer, and then stage four lung cancer, reality TV star Beth Chapman passed away peacefully on June 26 in Hawaii at the age of 51. Beth’s husband, Duane ‘Dog the Bounty Hunter’ Chapman, was by her side when she took her last breath.
Tributes poured in as comedian Brendan Grace died at the age of 68 following a short illness. His family said they were very grateful for the support they received from fans all over the world during Brendan’s illness and following his death.
Brendan began his career in entertainment as a singer but later turned to comedy. He was also an actor acclaimed for roles including Fr Fintan Stack in Father Ted.
Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth got married in 2018, and filed for divorce less than a year later. In early August, the couple announced that they had separated. Less than two weeks after that, on August 21, Hemsworth filed for divorce, citing “irreconcilable differences”.
The former couple, who married after 10 years of an on-again, off-again relationship, are said to have an ironclad prenuptial agreement and share no children, so it’s expected the divorce will be relatively smooth.
Friends of the couple said they weren’t surprised it didn’t work out. One day before the split announcement, Miley was pictured kissing Brody Jenner’s ex, Kaitlynn Carter.
Actor Kevin Hart was involved in a car accident in Los Angeles in the early hours of September 1. Hart’s friend was behind the wheel of the comedian’s classic car when it careened off the road, through a fence, and down a ditch.
On September 11, Hart was released and transferred to a live-in rehab facility to begin gruelling physical therapy. After about a week, he was finally allowed to head home, where he continued physical therapy.
In October, he returned to work.
Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively surprised everyone in October when they stepped out with their new baby. The infant was already a couple of months old, though no news had broken of the baby’s arrival.
Ryan and Blake have been known to keep their kids out of the public eye as much as possible, saying they want them to have “normal lives”.
Veteran broadcaster Gay Byrne passed away. The much-loved presenter was 85 and had been sick for some time.
As host of the record- breaking Late Late Show, he was credited by many as the catalyst of social and political change.
Later that month, Cork-born actor and comedian Nial Tóibín died at the age of 89 following a long illness. His career began in radio drama in the 1950s.
He then appeared in various films and TV shows, ultimately becoming a familiar face to generations of Irish people.
Rounding off the year in a slightly depressing way, December brought news of singer Jessie J and actor Channing Tatum’s split.
The pair had been dating for about a year. It’s not all doom and gloom, however — both say the break-up was amicable, and that they still remain “good friends”.