VMA Moments for Cyrus, West

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Taylor Swift and Nicki Minaj bury the hatchet at the VMAs.

No lack of drama at the 2015 MTV Video Music Awards, where Taylor Swift settled her old rift with Kanye West and her new one with Nicki Minaj, who started a new feud with host Miley Cyrus, the wrecking ball-bustier afficionado who managed to steal the show, announcing the free availability, via SoundCloud,  of a new album, Miley Cyrus and Her Dead Petz.

Indeed, Cyrus’ styling of a major awards show into a marketing moment to tout her latest release is being hailed by media watchers as a new milestone in savvy self-promotion.

Swift, who won four awards, presented West his Michael Jackson Video Vanguard honors, which provided an excuse for the spontaneously combustible artist to launch into an 11-minute speech that pushed the limits of coherence, ending with news that he has decided to run for president in 2020. With two minutes of uninterrupted applause preceding his speech, the crowd loved it.

Characterizing himself as Trump-like ratings-bait, West moaned about “how many times MTV ran that footage again” of him dissing Swift, admitted, “I still don’t understand award shows” while masterfully manipulating this one to garner further personal attention,  had a Sally Field moment, confessing, “I just wanted people to like me more,” stating he will “die for the art” and cautioning he “ain’t always gonna be polite” (okay, that last part we already knew).

West shared the Video with a Social Message award with Big Sean and John Legend for “One Man Can Change the World.” One can only imagine how he felt seeing Swift best Beyonce in all three of her triumphant categories — Best Female Video, Best Pop Video and Video of the Year. (In 2009, West famously crashed the stage to interrupt Swift as she received her 2009 Best Female Video Award, telling the audience that Beyonce was more deserving).

Continuing a Twitter contretemps, Minaj blasted Cyrus during her acceptance speech for Best Hip Hop Video. For her part, Cyrus took the attack lightly, commenting from the stage, “Hey, we are all in this industry and we all do interviews and say s–t,” clearly enjoying every moment in the spotlight, including the one in which her wardrobe malfunctioned. In a five-hour interview with The New York Times, published in two parts, today and on Aug. 27, Cyrus elaborated on the deceased pets that inspired her latest effort — her first since 2013’s Bangerz — and her collaboration with producer Wayne Coyne of the Flaming Lips, with whom she performed on the MTV telecast.

The evening was also notable for the emotional “comeback” of singer Justin Bieber, who appeared to break down in tears after performing his new single “What Do You Mean?”

The 2015 MTV Video Music Awards, the 32nd such show, took place this evening, August 30, at the Microsoft  Theater in Los Angeles. The show featured a new, rainbow-hued,  look for the famous space man trophy, as imagined by fashion designer Jeremy Scott.

BEST FEMALE VIDEO
Beyoncé – “7/11″
Taylor Swift – “Blank Space”
Nicki Minaj – “Anaconda”
Sia – “Elastic Heart”
Ellie Goulding – “Love Me Like You Do”

BEST HIP-HOP VIDEO
Fetty Wap – “Trap Queen”
Nicki Minaj – “Anaconda”
Kendrick Lamar – “Alright”
Wiz Khalifa ft. Charlie Puth – “See You Again”
Big Sean ft. E-40 – “I Don’t F–k With You”

BEST MALE VIDEO
Ed Sheeran – “Thinking Out Loud”
Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars – “Uptown Funk”
Kendrick Lamar – “Alright”
The Weeknd – “Earned It”
Nick Jonas – “Chains”

BEST POP VIDEO
Beyoncé – “7/11″
Ed Sheeran – “Thinking Out Loud”
Taylor Swift – “Blank Space”
Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars – “Uptown Funk”
Maroon 5 – “Sugar”

BEST ROCK VIDEO
Hozier – “Take Me to Church”
Fall Out Boy – “Uma Thurman”
Florence + the Machine – “Ship to Wreck”
Walk the Moon – “Shut Up and Dance”
Arctic Monkeys – “Why’d You Only Call Me When You’re High?”

VIDEO OF THE YEAR
Beyoncé – “7/11″
Ed Sheeran – “Thinking Out Loud”
Taylor Swift ft. Kendrick Lamar – “Bad Blood”
Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars – “Uptown Funk”
Kendrick Lamar – “Alright”

ARTIST TO WATCH
Fetty Wap – “Trap Queen”
Vance Joy – “Riptide”
George Ezra – “Budapest”
James Bay – “Hold Back The River”
FKA Twigs – “Pendulum”

BEST COLLABORATION
Taylor Swift ft. Kendrick Lamar – “Bad Blood”
Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars – “Uptown Funk”
Wiz Khalifa ft. Charlie Puth – “See You Again”
Ariana Grande & The Weeknd – “Love Me Harder”
Jessie J + Ariana Grande + Nicki Minaj – “Bang Bang”

VIDEO WITH A SOCIAL MESSAGE
Jennifer Hudson – “I Still Love You”
Colbie Caillat – “Try”
Big Sean ft. Kanye West and John Legend – “One Man Can Change the World”
Rihanna – “American Oxygen”
Wale – “The White Shoes”

BEST ART DIRECTION
Taylor Swift ft. Kendrick Lamar – “Bad Blood” (Charles Infante)
Snoop Dogg – “So Many Pros” (François Rousselet, Jason Fijal)
Jack White – “Would You Fight For My Love” (Jack White, Jeff Peterson)
The Chemical Brothers – “Go” (Michel Gondry)
Skrillex & Diplo – “Where Are U Now” with Justin Bieber (Brewer)

BEST CHOREOGRAPHY
Beyoncé – “7/11″ (Beyoncé, Chris Grant, Additional choreography: Gabriel Valenciano)
OK Go – “I Won’t Let You Down” (OK Go, air:man, and Mori Harano)
Chet Faker – “Gold” (Ryan Heffington)
Ed Sheeran – “Don’t” (Nappy Tabs)
Flying Lotus ft. Kendrick Lamar – “Never Catch Me” (Keone and Mari Madrid)

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY
Flying Lotus ft. Kendrick Lamar – “Never Catch Me” (Larkin Sieple)
Ed Sheeran – “Thinking Out Loud” (Daniel Pearl)
Taylor Swift ft. Kendrick Lamar – “Bad Blood” (Christopher Probst)
FKA Twigs – “Two Weeks” (Justin Brown)
Alt-J – “Left Hand Free” (Mike Simpson)

BEST DIRECTION
Taylor Swift ft. Kendrick Lamar – “Bad Blood” (Joseph Kahn)
Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars – “Uptown Funk” (Bruno Mars and Cameron Duddy)
Kendrick Lamar – “Alright” (Colin Tilley & the Little Homies)
Hozier – “Take Me To Church” (Brendan Canty and Conal Thomson of Feel Good Lost)
Childish Gambino – “Sober” (Hiro Murai)

BEST EDITING
Beyoncé – “7/11″ (Beyoncé, Ed Burke, Jonathan Wing)
Ed Sheeran – “Don’t” (Jacquelyn London)
Taylor Swift ft. Kendrick Lamar – “Bad Blood” (Chancler Haynes at Cosmo Street)
A$AP Rocky – “L$D” (Dexter Navy)
Skrillex & Diplo “Where Are U Now” with Justin Bieber (Brewer)

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS
Taylor Swift ft. Kendrick Lamar – “Bad Blood” (Ingenuity Studios)
FKA Twigs – “Two Weeks” (Gloria FX, Tomash Kuzmytskyi, and Max Chyzhevskyy)
Childish Gambino – “Telegraph Ave.” (Gloria FX)
Skrillex & Diplo “Where Are U Now” with Justin Bieber (Brewer, Gloria FX, and Max Chyzhevskyy)
Tyler, the Creator – “F****** Young/Death Camp” (Gloria FX)

MICHAEL JACKSON VIDEO VANGUARD AWARD
Kanye West

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