From PEOPLE Magazine Click to enlarge
MOST OF THE YEAR, WE STICK TO OUR mandate of photographing and chronicling extraordinary people doing ordinary things and ordinary people doing extraordinary things. But this week we're including a 60-page color section that shoots only for the stars. For this special issue, our third annual celebration of the "50 Most Beautiful People in the World," we commissioned our photographers to create fresh, revealing portraits of many of the most famous faces of our times. Our choices all started with great exteriors. Then we looked at their talent, their cheekbones, their social awareness. Then we looked at their cheekbones again. The results appear in a remarkable gallery that begins on page 47.

"Readers might not agree with all our choices, but I hope they enjoy the view as much as we do," says assistant managing editor Carol Wallace, who led the editorial team (pictured above getting into the spirit of things).

This issue also contains our regular weekly departments, as well as news stories ranging from Kuwait's battered servants to the Cosby kids.

All told, it is an issue that challenged the editors to produce more of what PEOPLE does best: creating arresting words and images about fascinating people.