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‘Stranger Things,’ ‘Beauty’ win big at MTV awards

Cast of ‘Stranger Things’, winner of the Show of the Year pose, in the press room

Nostalgic horror sensation “Stranger Things” and Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast” shared the spoils Sunday at the MTV Movie and TV Awards, expanded and renamed this year to include television. Netflix’s hit series took best show and best actor in a show for an emotional Millie Bobby Brown, one of its young stars, while best actor in a movie went to Emma Watson for “Beauty,” which also picked up best film.

“The village in our fairytale wanted to make Belle believe that our world was smaller than the way that she saw it, with fewer opportunities for her, that her curiosity and passion for knowledge and her desire for more in life were grounds for alienation,” said Watson, 27, of her iconic character. “I loved playing someone who didn’t listen to any of that. I’m so proud to be a part of a film that celebrates diversity, literacy, inclusion, joy and love the way that this one does.”

Daniel Kaluuya and Milton “Lil Rel” Howery, the stars of surprise smash hit thriller “Get Out,” got the prizes for “next generation” and best comedic performance respectively. Best villain went to Jeffrey Dean Morgan for his turn as the bloodthirsty Negan in “The Walking Dead,” while best hero was awarded to Taraji P. Henson for “Hidden Figures.”
The MTV Movie and TV Awards, hosted this year by comic actor Adam DeVine, have been taking a sideways look at Hollywood since 1992, honoring films and their actors with “golden popcorn” statuettes. The nominees are decided by producers and MTV executives, while the winners are chosen by the public, who vote online.

‘More than a kiss’
As a result, the awards have historically recognized commercial favorites, in contrast to the Oscars and other events based on critical or industry acclaim. The annual celebration of youth pop culture expanded this year to include television, and MTV reverted to broadcasting the event live after pre-recording last year’s show. The only hitch came when MTV was forced to cut short its red carpet as downtown LA was hit with an unseasonal hail storm that drenched celebrities and members of the press and public.

In another departure with convention it dispensed with gender distinctions in the categories, and awarded best kiss to a same-sex embrace. Ashton Sanders and Jharrel Jerome portrayed two African American teenagers exploring their sexuality in “Moonlight,” which won best picture at the Oscars. “I think it is safe to say that it really is okay for us young performers, especially minority performers, to step out of the box and do whatever it takes to tell a story and whatever it takes to make a change,” said Jerome, 19.

“This award is bigger than Jharrel and I. This represents more than a kiss,” Sanders added. “This is for those that feel like the others, the misfits. This represents us.” Meanwhile “Hidden Figures,” which tells the previously little-known story of the vital contribution of African American women to the NASA space program, won a new “Fight Against The System” category. Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriguez and Tyrese Gibson came on stage to accept a “generation award” for the “Fast and Furious” franchise.

Diesel thanked the generation of fans “willing to accept this multicultural franchise where it didn’t matter what color your skin was.” Hugh Jackman and debutante Dafne Keen, stars of “Logan,” were recognized for best double act while Trevor Noah of “The Daily Show” got best host.

Here is the full list of winners:
MOVIE OF THE YEAR: “Beauty and the Beast”
SHOW OF THE YEAR: “Stranger Things”
BEST ACTOR IN A MOVIE: Emma Watson – “Beauty and the Beast”
BEST ACTOR IN A SHOW: Millie Bobby Brown – “Stranger Things”
BEST HOST: Trevor Noah – “The Daily Show”
BEST DUO: Hugh Jackman and Dafne Keen – “Logan”
BEST KISS: Ashton Sanders and Jharrel Jerome – “Moonlight”
TEAR-JERKER: “This Is Us” – Jack (Milo Ventimiglia) and Randall (Lonnie
Chavis) at karate
BEST MUSICAL MOMENT: “You’re the One That I Want” – ensemble, “Grease: Live”
BEST COMEDIC PERFORMANCE: Milton “Lil Rel” Howery – “Get Out”
BEST HERO: Taraji P. Henson – “Hidden Figures”
BEST VILLAIN: Jeffrey Dean Morgan – “The Walking Dead”

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