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In a battle of the summer blockbuster heroes, Mel Gibson bested Bruce Willis to seize the "Cover Story" crown for July. The "Lethal Weapon" star scored 7 points with four magazine covers, including a solo appearance on People, as well as teaming with his co-stars on Jet and Us; he also appeared on the Star.

Second and third place were captured by a Hollywood couple who announced their plans for divorce. In the No. 2 spot, Mr. Willis attracted a wallop of publicity as much for his split from the No. 3 finisher, Demi Moore, as his role in "Armageddon." He won 6.5 points, while Ms. Moore scored 5; each had four covers, including dual appearances on the National Enquirer, People and the Star.

Tied with Ms. Moore for third place was "X-Files" star David Duchovny. The X-man for the '90s scored 5 points with three covers, including Entertainment Weekly and Movieline.

Fifth place was another tie, with Joan Lunden and "Lethal Weapon" player Rene Russo each charting 3.5 points.

The race for seventh place drew a crowd, with 16 folks scoring 3 points. Included in the pack were Ben Affleck, singer Erykah Badu, Tom Cruise, Ralph Fiennes, Helen Hunt, Princes William and Harry, and Uma Thurman.

Cover Story is Ad Age's monthly ranking of celebrities' popularity as reflected by their appearances on the covers of more than 30 of the nation's leading publications.

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