MTV VMAs 2022: Winners announced at raucous ceremony of shock cameos and surprise announcements

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The MTV VMAs took place Sunday 28 August at a live ceremony at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey.

This year’s event was hosted by LL Cool J, Nicki Minaj and Jack Harlow, with performances from Eminem and Snoop Dogg, Lizzo, K-pop group Blackpink, and Italian rock band Maneskin.

Taylor Swift announced her brand new album, Midnights, at the ceremony after making a surprise appearance.

Johnny Depp also made a (more controversial) appearance, with his head superimposed onto one of the Moon Person trophies.

As well as winning Video of the Year, Swift was spotted enthusiastically rapping along with Nicki Minaj’s ‘Super Bass’ from her seat in the crowd.

And though Harry Styles was nominated for a host of awards, he failed to attend the ceremony due to performing at one of his own concerts in New York.

Bad Bunny won the coveted Artist of the Year prize, shortly after driving fans wild when he kissed one of his male backing dancers during his performance.

See the full list of winners here.

Follow the liveblog below

Key Points

MTV VMAs 2022 to kick off in Newark, New Jersey

Sunday 28 August 2022 20:25 , Roisin O'Connor

Good evening and welcome to The Independent’s liveblog for the MTV VMAs 2022.

This year’s ceremony is taking place tonight (Sunday 28 August) in Newark, New Jersey, with not one but three hosts to keep you entertained through the evening: Jack Harlow, Nicki Minaj and LL Cool J.

Organisers have also booked a number of stars for live performances, including Lizzo, K-pop group BLACKPINK, Eminem and Snoop Dogg, and Italian rock band Maneskin.

Harlow and Maneskin are slightly controversial appearances due to the fact that they both dropped out of Reading and Leeds festivals in the UK to make it to the VMAs. I guess money (and primetime TV slots) talk...

Let’s take a look at this year’s nominees, shall we?

MTV VMAs 2022 announce Foo Fighters, Kendrick Lamar, and Billie Eilish among nominees

Predictions for best-dressed at the MTV VMAs 2022

Sunday 28 August 2022 21:14 , Roisin O'Connor

OK, who’s gonna wear what at the red carpet? I’ve seen a lot of predictions for “naked” dresses because Megan Fox wore one last year... personally I’m always excited to see what Lizzo rocks up in, plus the Maneskin lot (even if they are in my bad books for pulling out of a UK festival to attend), Rosalia, Bad Bunny (incredible style), and Billie Eilish. Nicki Minaj will probably be sporting at least three outrageous outfits.

Sunday 28 August 2022 21:17 , Roisin O'Connor

Here’s the lifestyle team’s report on that Megan Fox dress from last year

The internet can’t stop talking about Megan Fox’s VMAs look

Jack Harlow and Maneskin pull out of Reading and Leeds festivals to perform at MTV VMAs

Sunday 28 August 2022 21:18 , Roisin O'Connor

Reading and Leeds bosses were probably quite disgruntled to learn Italian rock band Maneskin and US rapper Jack Harlow were pulling out of the festivals last minute.

Both acts were lured away by the promise of some primetime TV spots at the MTV VMAs 2022, with Harlow both performing and co-hosting with fellow rappers Nicki Minaj and LL Cool J.

“We are saddened to hear that Jack Harlow and Måneskin have decided to perform at an award show the same weekend they were confirmed to play Reading & Leeds,” festival organisers wrote in a statement posted to their Instagram Stories.

“We are working on some exciting replacements to join Arctic Monkeys, Dave, Bring Me The Horizon, The 1975, Halsey, Megan Thee Stallion, D-Block Europe, PinkPantheress, Joy Crookes, Fontaines DC, Bastille, Willow, Wolf Alice, Glass Animals, Hybrid Minds and many others at Reading & Leeds Festivals this August Bank Holiday weekend, watch this space!”

Check out critic Mark Beaumont’s report on the first day of Reading festival here, and his review of Day 2 at Reading festival here.

Remembering Taylor Swift’s MTV VMAs red carpet look in 2019

Sunday 28 August 2022 21:20 , Roisin O'Connor

Remember this Versace look from Taylor Swift in 2019? I adored it (I’m such a Versace fan) – it was colourful, bold and had a perfect nod to classic power dressing.

Taylor Swift onstage at the VMAs with the stars of her music video 'You Need to Calm Down' (Getty Images for MTV)
Taylor Swift onstage at the VMAs with the stars of her music video 'You Need to Calm Down' (Getty Images for MTV)

Nicki Minaj, LL Cool J and Jack Harlow to co-host MTV VMAs 2022

Sunday 28 August 2022 21:42 , Roisin O'Connor

This weekend’s MTV VMAs will have three hosts; rap stars LL Cool J, Nicki Minaj and Jack Harlow.

The trio will introduce and present Sunday’s (28 August) ceremony at The Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey and will appear alongside the evening’s performers, which include Eminem and Snoop Dogg in a first-of-its-kind appearance, as well as Lizzo, Anitta, BLACKPINK, J Balvin, Måneskin and Kane Brown.

You can find a full list of performers here.

Having multiple hosts is nothing new to the VMAs, which were first anchored by Bette Midler and Dan Aykroyd in 1984. Other previous hosts include Katy Perry, Arsenio Hall, Jack Black, Russell Brand, Chris Rock and last year, Doja Cat.

LL Cool J is a three-time nominee who won in 1991 for best rap video for “Mama Said Knock You Out,” and was a recipient of the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award in 1997.

Read more about this year’s co-hosts below:

What will we see from Eminem and Snoop Dogg?

Sunday 28 August 2022 22:02 , Roisin O'Connor

It has been 12 years since Eminem last performed at the VMAs, and 17 years since Snoop Dogg’s last performance at the awards ceremony.

In February, the pair joined forces with Dr Dre, Mary J Blige, and Kendrick Lamar for a star-studded Super Bowl halftime show.

As reported by The Hollywood Reporter, MTV has said the show will be a “first of its kind” performance of “From the D 2 The LBC” inspired by the world of the Otherside metaverse.

Otherside – an American video game developer based in Boston – describes itself as “a gamified interoperable metaverse currently under development. The game blends mechanics from massively multiplayer online role playing games (MMORPGs) and web3-enabled virtual worlds.

“Think of it as a metaRPG where the players own the world, your NFTs can become playable characters, and thousands can play together in real time.”

Eminem and Snoop Dogg to perform in ‘first of its kind’ show at the VMAs

How to watch the 2022 MTV VMAs

Sunday 28 August 2022 22:31 , Roisin O'Connor

The MTV VMAs will take place at 8pm ET on Sunday, 28 August at New Jersey’s Prudential Center. This means that, in the UK, the ceremony will air at 1am on Monday, 29 August.

Here’s how to tune in... (I’ll be in bed, darlings, handing over to my fabulous colleagues in the US for the main event).

How and when to watch the MTV Video Music Awards 2022

Madonna proves the MTV VMAs have never been short on controversy

Sunday 28 August 2022 23:01 , Roisin O'Connor

Earlier this month, Madonna reflected on how a wardrobe malfunction early in her career – at the very first MTV Awards in 1984 – that led her manager to say her “career was over”.

The 63-year-old music icon said the moment happened when she performed her hit single “Like A Virgin”.

“I walked down these very steep stairs of a wedding cake, and I got to the bottom, and I started dancing around, and my white stiletto shoes fell off,” Madonna remembered on a recent appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.

“And I was trying to do like this smooth move like dive for the shoe and make it look like it was choreography and my dressed flipped up, and my butt was showing. Can you imagine?

“Those were the days when you shouldn’t show your butt to have a career,” she quipped. “Now it’s the opposite.”

Madonna says manager told her ‘career was over’ after onstage wardrobe malfunction

The best dressed stars at the 2022 MTV VMAs

Sunday 28 August 2022 23:16 , Meredith Clark

The 2022 MTV Video Music Awards is expected to be full of iconic fashion.

This year’s red carpet begins at 6:15pm (ET) with a 90-minute MTV VMAs Pre-Show hosted by Nessa, Kevan Kenney, and celebrity correspondent Tate McRae. The red carpet livestream can be watched on MTV’s Youtube channel.

The stars have already begun to arrive on the red carpet. Lizzo, who is nominated for four awards tonight, arrived at the Prudential Center in a couture Jean Paul Gaultier gown. Meanwhile, co-hosts Jack Harlow and LL Cool J wore matching black leather looks.

MTV VMAs 2022: The best dressed stars on the red carpet

Meredith Clark has all the best dressed stars from the 2022 MTV Video Music Awards.

Meet the 2022 MTV VMAs nominees

Sunday 28 August 2022 23:59 , Roisin O'Connor

It’s an eclectic bunch of nominees for this year’s MTV VMAs, which are taking place tonight live at New Jersey’s Prudential Center from 8pm ET (1am UK time).

Kendrick Lamar, Billie Eilish, and Foo Fighters have received nominations, along with UK acts such as Ed Sheeran and Harry Styles.

You can find the full list of MTV’s VMA 2022 nominees below.

MTV VMAs 2022 announce Foo Fighters, Kendrick Lamar, and Billie Eilish among nominees

The winners are already rolling in

Monday 29 August 2022 00:45 , Leonie Cooper

The official ceremony hasn’t started yet, but winners are already being announced on the red carpet, with Italian glam rock band Måneskin taking the prize for Best Alternative for “I Wanna Be Your Slave” and Blackpink taking the gong for Best Metaverse Performance.

MTV VMAs 2022 winners: The full list

Johnny Depp helps open the show

01:20 , Leonie Cooper

Johnny Depp’s rumoured appearance as the MTV “Moonman” trophy actually happened, with a super brief appearance from the actor after Lizzo and Jack Harlow’s ceremony-opening performances.

Here’s Johnny

01:33 , Leonie Cooper

Read more on Johnny’s appearance from Peony Hirwani.

“I just want you guys to know I’m available for birthdays, bat mitzvahs, weddings, wakes – any old thing you need,” said Depp via video.

Johnny Depp makes an appearance at the 2022 VMAs

Lil Nas X stuns in incredible feather headpiece at 2022 MTV VMAs

01:36 , Meredith Clark

Lil Nas X turned heads at the 2022 MTV Video Music Awards.

The “Industry Baby” rapper, who is nominated for seven awards at this year’s ceremony, walked the red carpet in a feather ensemble designed by Harris Reed.

The all-black look featured a structured skirt and massive feather headpiece. A shirtless Lil Nas X also showed off his toned figure, and opted for black leather pants underneath the feathered skirt.

Lil Nas X stuns in incredible feather headpiece at 2022 MTV VMAs

Fans instantly took to social media to praise the rapper for his MTV VMAs fashion.

“ICONIC,” tweeted one user, while another fan said: “lil nas is so gorgeous i gasped.”

Read more about Lil Nas X’s stunning look here.

Taylor Swift makes unannounced appearance in nude-look outfit

01:53 , Tom Murray

Taylor Swift returned to the VMAs after a three-year hiatus

She’s nominated in all 5 categories and has already won Best Longform Video, for her work on All Too Well: The Short Film.

Read more from Tom Murray here.

Taylor Swift makes surprise appearance at MTV VMAs in nude-look jewelled outfit

Who’s won what?

02:17 , Leonie Cooper

We’re deep into the ceremony and already a host of big awards have been dished out.

Album of the Year has gone to Harry Styles for Harry’s House, while Red Hot Chili Peppers received the Global Icon Award and Nicki Minaj the Video Vanguard Award.

Taylor Swift has scored the Best Longform Video prize for All Too Well (10 Minute Version) (Taylor’s Version).

There’s still plenty more to go, so don’t go anywhere just yet...

When did the ‘Moon Person’ trophy receive its gender neutral name?

02:46 , Meredith Clark

Fans of the MTV Video Music Awards may notice during the award show ceremony that the iconic statue has been referred to as “Moon Person,” rather than its original “Moonman”.

That’s because network president Chris McCarthy announced in 2017 that the trophy – which depicts an astronaut planting a flag with the MTV logo on the moon’s surface – will from now on be known by its gender neutral name.

“Why should it be a man?” McCarthy said at the time. “It could be a man, it could be a woman, it could be transgender, it could be nonconformist.”

MTV VMAs 2022: When did the ‘Moon Person’ trophy receive its gender neutral name?

The MTV Moon Person pays tribute to the networks origins. When the channel launched in August 1981, the first image to ever appear on MTV was footage of the Apollo 11 moon landing, with the MTV flag edited into the introduction.

Read more here.

Taylor Swift flawlessly raps along to Nicki Minaj’s ‘Super Bass’

02:47 , Tom Murray

Taylor Swift was seen nailing the verses to Nicki Minaj’s “Super Bass” as the rapper performed to the VMA crowd.

Minaj received the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award at the ceremony, which is “presented to artists for their outstanding contributions and profound impact on music video and popular culture”.

In her speech, Minaj said she wished Michael Jackson and Whitney Houston were still alive, adding: “I wish people took mental health more seriously.”

Read more here.

2022 MTV VMAs: Taylor Swift seen rapping all the words to Nicki Minaj’s ‘Super Bass’

Taylor in full flow

03:34 , Leonie Cooper

Taylor Swift might not be performing onstage tonight, but she couldn’t help getting stuck in anyway, rapping along to Nicki Minaj’s “Super Bass” and doing a pretty decent job of it.

Lizzo calls out ‘b******’ in the press during MTV VMAs speech

03:40 , Peony Hirwani

Lizzo has a message for the press.

During her 2022 MTV VMAs acceptance speech for the Video for Good Award, the 34-year-old singer called out “the b*tches that got something to say about me in the press”.

“You know what? I’m gonna say nothing. Maybe something like ‘Lizzo why don’t you clap back?’” she said. “Because b*itch, I’m winning h*e.

“This b*itch is winning, h*e,” Lizzo then yelled out of excitement.

Read more here.

Lizzo calls out ‘b*******’ in the press during MTV VMAs speech

Nicki Minaj ‘wishes Michael Jackson was here’ during MTV VMAs acceptance speech

03:45 , Peony Hirwani

Nicki Minaj said she wished “Michael Jackson was” present at the 2022 MTV VMAs ceremony.

During her acceptance speech for the Video Vanguard award, the 39-year-old rapper said that she wishes “Jackson and Whitney Houston were here”.

“I wish people understood what they went through,” she added. “I wish people took mental health seriously, even for the people you think have perfect lives.”

Read more here.

Nicki Minaj ‘wishes Michael Jackson was here’ during MTV VMAs acceptance speech

Bad Bunny is Artist of the Year

03:46 , Leonie Cooper

Bad Bunny has won the coveted Artist of the Year award – like Harry Styles he wasn’t able to attend the ceremony due to having his own gig tonight, but unlike Harry, Bad Bunny let the MTV cameras in to share one of his tracks live from Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, New York.

Harry Styles fails to attend MTV VMAs due to Madison Square Garden gig

03:50 , Peony Hirwani

Harry Styles failed to attend the 2022 MTV Video Music Awards due to a clashing Love On Tour show at the famous Madison Square Garden venue in New York.

The 28-year-old singer, who won the Album of the Year award for Harry’s House, made a virtual appearance at the star-studded ceremony to thank his fans.

“I obviously wouldn’t be holding this if it wasn’t for you,” Styles said in his acceptance speech. “I’m sorry I can’t be there with you tonight. I’m about to go on stage just down the road.”

Read more here.

Harry Styles fails to attend MTV VMAs due to Madison Square Garden gig

Taylor’s special news

04:24 , Leonie Cooper

Taylor Swift thrilled the crowd by announcing the release date of her brand new album while collecting the award for Video of the Year.

The star said the album will come out on 21 October, before saying: “I will tell you more at midnight.”

Not long to go...

Anitta makes history

04:36 , Tom Murray

Brazilian performer Anitta made history with her nomination, performance and win tonight.

The “Envolver” singer was the first person from her nation to do any of the above at the longrunning US awards ceremony.

The Best Latin winner used her time on stage to make a political statement about the criminalisation of funk carioca, also known as favela funk.

Read more.

Anitta makes history as first Brazilian winner and performer at MTV VMAs

Taylor Swift debuts artwork for next album

05:27 , Maanya Sachdeva

Taylor Swift has revealed more details of her forthcoming album after she teased its release at the 2022 MTV Video Music Awards on Sunday night (28 August).

While accepting the award for Video of the Year at VMAs, Swift said that her new album will drop on 21 October.

“And I will tell you more at midnight,” she added.

At 12AM ET on Monday (29 August), the singer, 32, announced that the album is titled Midnights and shared its artwork on Instagram.

Full story here:

Taylor Swift reveals new details about her next album

Billy Eichner tears into the US Supreme Court

05:59 , Tom Murray

A highly animated Billy Eichner eviscerated the US Supreme Court and Justice Clarence Thomas, in particular, calling both “homophobes”.

Eichner was introducing Panic! At The Disco when he made the statements.

Thomas was among those to suggest that the court should revisit precedents on same-sex marriage after overturning the Roe v Wade verdict, limiting abortion access in the country.

Read more here.

Billy Eichner eviscerates ‘homophobe’ Justice Clarence Thomas in MTV VMAs speech

06:00 , Leonie Cooper

Here’s a full list of winners from the night

MTV VMAs 2022 winners: The full list

‘Fired up’ fans react to Bad Bunny kissing a man during his performance

06:55 , Peony Hirwani

Bad Bunny fans are all “fired up” as the rapper kissed one of his backing dancers during his 2022 MTV Video Music Awards live performance.

The 28-year-old Puerto Rican rapper, who won the Album of the Year award, shared a passionate kiss with one of the dancers on stage during his remote performance from Yankee Stadium.

Read more.

Fans react to Bad Bunny kissing a man during his MTV VMAs performance

Fans ‘furious’ as MTV censors ‘most of’ Måneskin’s performance

08:04 , Peony Hirwani

Måneskin fans were left disappointed after MTV appeared to censor most of the band’s 2022 Video Music Awards performance.

The band’s frontman David started off the performance wearing backless chaps for their live rendition of their hit track “Supermodel”.

Soon after that, viewers noticed the network shifted to wide camera shots of the New Jersey venue, rather than close-up shots of the band’s performance.

Read more.

Måneskin fans ‘furious’ as MTV censors ‘most of’ the band’s VMAs performance

How MTV VMAs viewers responded to Johnny Depp’s shock appearance

10:10 , Peony Hirwani

Viewers are divided after watching Johnny Depp make a surprise appearance at the 2022 MTV Video Music Awards.

While some fans were “excited” to see Depp appear on screen, others complained that it “wasn’t necessary”.

Read more.

How MTV VMAs viewers responded to Johnny Depp’s shock appearance


11:13 , Maanya Sachdeva

Lizzo fans think her VMAs remark was a response to fat-shaming by comic Aries Spears

11:14 , Maanya Sachdeva

Lizzo’s fans think she used the 2022 MTV Video Music Awards stage to respond to Aries Spears, after the comedian fat-shamed her during an interview.

Spears made several fatphobic comments about the Grammy Award-winner in a conversation with the “Art of Dialogue” YouTube channel, a snippit of which was shared on Twitter on Saturday (27 August).

When asked about his thoughts on Lizzo’s music, Spears said the singer had a “very pretty face” before launching into a tirade of degrading remarks about the singer’s looks.

While Lizzo hasn’t addressed Spears fatphobic remarks directly, social media users are speculating that part of her acceptance speech at the VMAs on Sunday night (28 August) were aimed at the comic.

Full story here:

Lizzo fans think her VMAs remark was a response to fat-shaming by comic Aries Spears