Last night the 9th annual BET Awards were handed out at the Shrine Auditorium here in Los Angeles, CA and earlier today we saw video of Janet Jackson‘s appearance on the awards show where she delivered a statement to fans of her late brother Michael Jackson. As I noted earlier, the entire BET Awards were a tribute to Michael‘s memory. Here are a few photos from the red carpet arrivals from last night’s awards show:
I LOVED seeing the cast of Bravo TV‘s The Real Housewives of Atlanta … including alums NeNe Leakes (FTW!), Lisa Wu Hartwell, Sheree Whitfield and new castmember Kandi Burruss. I am really looking forward to the return of the Atlanta Housewives in August :) I also love the photo of Zoe Saldana and Nichelle Nichols (who both portrayed the Star Trek character Uhura) together on the red carpet … beautiful, beautiful ladies. The show itself was very entertaining … in between award presentations and live performances, host Jamie Foxx made sure to remind the audience that this year’s BET Awards was a true celebration of Michael Jackson‘s legacy. Here are a few pics from the show itself and a rundown of what went down:
Michael Jackson’s sister Janet thanked the crowd at the BET Awards Sunday night for paying tribute to her late brother. “My entire family wanted to be here, but it was just too painful,” she said, holding back tears. “To you Michael is an icon. To us Michael is family. And he will forever live in all of our hearts.” The star-studded BET Awards was an appreciation of Michael Jackson, who died Thursday at age 50. He was “the greatest star in the world,” Joseph Jackson, father of the late entertainer, said on Sunday night. “I wish the world had recognized him when he were living,” Joseph Jackson told CNN’s Don Lemon outside the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, California. “Right now he’s bigger than ever. But I wish he was here to see all this, to hear all this.” When asked about circumstances surrounding his son’s death, he said, “I have a lot of concerns but I can’t get into that. … I don’t like what happened.” The awards opened with a fleet-footed New Edition, with Bobby Brown, performing an energized version of the Jackson 5 hit “The Love You Save,” to raucous praise. Host Jamie Foxx wore a red, leather “Beat It” jacket for his opening monologue and did his best to imitate Jackson’s backward glide across the floor. In addition to Foxx, presenter Jeremy Piven mixed praise for Jackson with comic relief. “If it wasn’t for Michael Jackson, people like Justin Timberlake would be selling curly fries in the valley,” the actor said. “I mean that with love.” This year’s performers included, Beyonce, Keyshia Cole and R&B artist Neyo who performed a hard-hitting tribute to the 1990s with appearances by acts Keith Sweat, Guy and Bell Biv Devoe. The presenters included the past and present Uhura of “Star Trek”: Zoe Saldana, who starred in the film, and Nichelle Nichols of the TV show. The show also honored the soulful Ohio trio, The O’Jays, who were presented the Lifetime Achievement Award. Tevin Campbell performed a rendition of The O’Jays classic “Forever Mine.” Johnny Gill, Tyrese and Trey Songz performed a rumbling, soulful medley of The O’Jays hits that had some in the audience wondering if Songz was older than his years. Among the award winners, Atlanta, Georgia-based singer Keri Hilson, who was nominated in four categories, received best new artist and Beyonce won best female artist. Debra L. Lee, chairman and chief executive officer of Black Entertainment Television, said Jackson’s death both saddened and energized the awards organizers. “When we heard the news of Michael Jackon’s passing we knew immediately we’d have to change the nature of this show,” she said. “We put the show together in a matter of three or four days. It’s truly been a labor of love for us,” Lee said.
I was able to watch the show myself and it really was a very celebratory event. Except for a few touching moments, it really looked like everyone was having a great time. To be honest, I think that is the best way to honor someone’s passing. It was said many times during the BET Awards show last night — Michael Jackson was directly responsible for last night’s awards show. His trailblazing legacy as an African American performer paved the way for all of the African American artists who are enjoying successful careers today. I think it was right that his contributions were honored … and celebrated. Congrats to all of this year’s winners of BET Awards.