MTV Awards Set Out To Change The Game

08 May, 2017

In an effort to revamp a 25-year-old award show, MTV turned the MTV Movie Awards into the MTV Movie & TV Awards on Sunday night. In addition to awarding prizes to television shows, the network ditched the idea of dividing up “best actor” and “best actress” — the acting categories are now gender-neutral. And the category for “best fight” is now “best fight against the system.”

MTV is very proud of all its progressive changes; the ceremony’s host, “Pitch Perfect” star Adam Devine, poked some fun at the network.

“You might have noticed that tonight isn’t just about … having a great time. It’s also about breaking down barriers and spreading awareness of pressing issues,” Devine said. He noted that Hugh Jackman should be Hugh Jackperson; “Beauty and the Beast” should be “Multi-Dimensional Woman With Her Own Dynamic Traits and the Beast”; and Freeform’s “Pretty Little Liars” should be “Pretty Big Talents.”

But some actors got more serious during the telecast and used their time on stage to deliver powerful speeches.

As the first star to accept an award, Watson (who frequently speaks out about feminism) applauded MTV for its new category structure and called out presenter Asia Kate Dillon of Showtime’s “Billions,” the first openly non-binary performer to play a non-binary character in a major TV show.

One of the pivotal scenes during ‘Moonlight’, the film that won the best picture Oscar, is when teenage Chiron (played by Sanders) shares a first kiss with his best friend, Kevin (Jerome). The pair delivered a joint speech when they won the trophy.

Taraji Henson starred as Katherine Johnson in “Hidden Figures,” about the black female mathematicians at NASA in the 1960s who played an integral role in the space program. After giving a shout-out to her co-stars Octavia Spencer and Janelle Monáe, Henson reiterated the importance of the film.

Vin Diesel accepts the Generation Award for the “Fast and the Furious” franchise. The car-racing movies have raked in billions over the years, so MTV decided to give the franchise a special prize for its “global contribution to pop culture.” Diesel did the honors, and as you might have guessed, he mentioned family:

Most importantly, I gotta thank our generation. I gotta thank a generation that was willing to accept this multicultural franchise, where it didn’t matter what color your skin was, or what country you were from. When you’re family, you’re family.

Bill Condon accepts the best movie trophy for “Beauty and the Beast.”

It was a big night for the Disney live-action film, which has earned a whopping $487 million since it opened a few months ago. Condon, the director, thanked a specific demographic for the movie’s success, one that is occasionally overlooked in Hollywood.

Thank you to the audience that embraced this movie so much, but especially to the women. Because women have proven that they are a huge and powerful audience and it’s going to change the movie business. So thank you very much.

List of Winners

Movie of the year: “Beauty and the Beast.”

Actor in a Movie: Emma Watson, “Beauty and the Beast.”

Show of the Year: “Stranger Things.”

Actor in a Show: Millie Bobby Brown, “Stranger Things.”

Kiss: Ashton Sanders and Jharrel Jerome, “Moonlight.”

Duo: Hugh Jackman and Dafne King, “Logan.”

Comedic performance: Lil Rel Howery, “Get Out.”

Hero: Taraji P. Henson, “Hidden Figures.”

Villain: Jeffrey Dean Morgan, “The Walking Dead.”

Next Generation: Daniel Kaluuya.

Generation: “Fast and Furious” film franchise.

Host: Trevor Noah, “The Daily Show.”

Tearjerker: “This is Us.”

Documentary: “13th.”

American Story: “black-ish.”

Reality Competition: “RuPaul’s Drag Race.”

Fight Against the System: “Hidden Figures.”

Trending: Channing Tatum as Beyonce, “Lip Sync Battle.”

Musical Moment: “You’re the One That I Want,” from “Grease: Live.”

Washington Post

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