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2008 MTV Video Music Awards

2008 MTV Video Music Awards
File:2008 MTV Music Video Awards.png
Date Sunday, September 7, 2008
Location Paramount Pictures Studios, Los Angeles, California
Host Russell Brand
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Most awards Britney Spears
Official website
Television/Radio coverage
Network MTV

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The 2008 MTV Video Music Awards took place on September 7, 2008 live from Paramount Pictures Studios (which, like MTV, is owned by Viacom), honoring the best music videos from the previous year. Nominations for a majority of the categories were announced on the MTV program FNMTV after being selected through viewer online voting at The remaining, professional categories were chosen by a panel of music industry professionals. Unlike previous editions of the show, MTV announced the winners to the professional categories three days before the ceremony (September 4) via a press release, rather than on the pre-show or main show.[1] The rest of the winners were announced during the ceremony. Comedian Russell Brand hosted the event.[2] On September 4, 2008 it was announced that Britney Spears would open the event.

This year's awards were a huge improvement ratings-wise, seeing a 19% rise on last year with 8.4 million viewers. It was also a 23% advance over the 5.76 million who saw the 2006 ceremony. Although ratings improved, this year's video music awards was hosted at its smallest venue of its 25-year history. Britney Spears became the main winner of the night, walking away with three Moonmen: Video of the Year, Best Female Video, and Best Pop Video all for "Piece of Me".


Winners are in bold text.

Video of the Year

Britney Spears — "Piece of Me"

Best Male Video

Chris Brown — "With You"

Best Female Video

Britney Spears — "Piece of Me"

Best New Artist

Tokio Hotel — "Ready, Set, Go!"

Best Pop Video

Britney Spears — "Piece of Me"

Best Rock Video

Linkin Park — "Shadow of the Day"

Best Hip-Hop Video

Lil Wayne (featuring Static Major) — "Lollipop"

Best Dancing in a Video

The Pussycat Dolls — "When I Grow Up"

Best Direction

Erykah Badu — "Honey" (Director: Erykah Badu and Mr. Roboto)

Best Choreography

Gnarls Barkley — "Run" (Choreographer: Michael Rooney)

Best Special Effects

Kanye West (featuring T-Pain) — "Good Life" (Special Effects: SoMe, Jonas & François)

Best Art Direction

Gnarls Barkley — "Run" (Art Directors: Happy Massee and Kells Jesse)

Best Editing

Death Cab for Cutie — "I Will Possess Your Heart" (Editors: Aaron Stewart-Ahn and Jeff Buchanan)

Best Cinematography

The White Stripes — "Conquest" (Director of Photography: Wyatt Troll)

Best UK Video [3]

The Ting Tings — "Shut Up and Let Me Go" [4]



  • Dance-off: Fanny Pak vs. Kaba Modern (winner, as chosen by the audience via online voting, got $25,000 for charity and the opportunity of presenting the award for Best Dancing in a Video during the main show)[5]

Main stage

Back lot (off stage)

DJ AM and Travis Barker performances

DJ AM and Travis Barker performed small interludes consisting of remixes of past hits throughout the show, as well as teaming up with Katy Perry, The Ting Tings and Lupe Fiasco to perform their own singles and MTV classics from the past 25 years.


DJ AM and Travis Barker also played remixes of the following songs in the lead-up to or return from commercial breaks.



Host Russell Brand made controversial remarks, which were not taken well by some in the United States.[6] He urged Americans to vote for Barack Obama and referred to President George W. Bush as "that retard and cowboy fella".[7]

Additionally, one of Brand's jokes during the night centered around purity rings, specifically those worn by the Jonas Brothers. Jordin Sparks, who also wears a purity ring, began her introduction of T.I. and Rihanna by saying, "It's not bad to wear a promise ring because not everybody, guy or girl, wants to be a slut." Sparks was criticized for implying that those who do not wear purity rings or do not abstain are promiscuous.[8]

Brand later described the experience, and aftermath, during his 2009 comedy special 'Scandalous - Live At The O2'.


In repeat airings all references to John McCain and George W. Bush were removed from Russell Brand's opening monologue.


Several Promos were made that featured host Russell Brand and MTV regulars Britney Spears, Pete Wentz, and LL Cool J. They have been shown both on MTV and MTV Hits numerous times. Britney Spears' promos were given a lot of attention. The promos featured Spears and Brand in a Paramount lot ad-libbing while an elephant was positioned in the background, reference to "the elephant in the room", rumored to be her criticized 2007 VMA performance, which they refrained from discussing in the commercials.[9][10]

There was also a promotion that appeared on Nickelodeon, featuring the cast of iCarly.

During the program, the MTV networks VH1, MTV Hits, and MTV Jams did not air their usual programming at all, instead displaying full-screen cards guiding viewers to watch the ceremony on MTV, with VH1 using a rotating "billboard" of sponsors to promote 'sneak peeks' of the live ceremony which appeared in the top-left corner with false crowd noise in the background. During the VMA commercial breaks, VH1 also carried regular advertising.

Notes and references

External links