Actor and Comedian Kevin Hart to Host This Year’s BET AWARDS Premiering Sunday, June 26 at 8 p.m.*

May 17, 2011

NEW YORK, May 17, 2011 /PRNewswire/ – BET Networks, a subsidiary of Viacom (NYSE: VIA, VIA.B), today announced that actor/comedian Kevin Hart has been tapped to host this year’s BET AWARDS, ranked among the Top 5 Cable Award Shows every year among total viewers. The brightest night in music will broadcast LIVE from the historic Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles on Sunday, June 26, 2011 at 8:00 p.m.* on BET.

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For over a decade the BET AWARDS has reigned as the biggest family event rivaling all top awards shows. Having escalated each year in industry influence with A-list celebrity nominations, star-studded appearances and one-of-a-kind performances, the BET AWARDS has undoubtedly established itself as the hottest ticket on television.

The brightest stars in music, acting and sports will appear and perform at this year’s BET AWARDS which recognizes the achievements of artists, entertainers and athletes in 20 categories. Leading the pack this year is Chris Brown with an impressive 6 nominations across multiple categories: Best Male R&B Artist, Best Collaboration (for which he holds two nominations), Video of the Year, Best Actor and Coca-Cola Viewers’ Choice. Closely behind him is Lil Wayne with 5 nominations: Best Male Hip Hop Artist, Best Collaboration (with fellow nominee Chris Brown), Video of the Year and Coca-Cola Viewers’ Choice for his collaborations with Chris Brown and Cory Gunz. Rounding out the list and tied with 4 nominations each are Kanye West, Rihanna and Drake.

“When we asked folks who should host this year’s BET AWARDS online, in the streets, among other celebs and throughout social media, one name came back to us loud and clear: Kevin Hart,” said Stephen Hill, BET’s president of music programming and specials. “He is blue flame right now and we are looking forward to working with him on the show,” stated Hill. “His energy, wit and the always fantastic performances will make for yet another must see event–and the ‘Chocolate Droppa’ might even get a verse in the show,” he added.

Kevin Hart burst onto the scene as one of the most versatile comedy actors in film and television. Hart is currently touring the nation on his “Laugh at My Pain” tour. He is the number one comedian on Ticketmaster and in February 2011, Hart sold out the Nokia Theater two nights in a row to break a record previously set by Eddie Murphy. Hart will spend the summer of 2011 filming lead roles in two new movies. In July, he will start working on Screen Gem’s “Think Like A Man,” the comedy is based on Steve Harvey’s bestselling 2009 book Act Like A Lady, Think Like A Man. Hart will then start work on the Nick Stoller comedy “Five Year Engagement” with producer Judd Apatow and Universal.

Hart was last seen in “Little Fockers” and “Death at a Funeral,” alongside Chris Rock, Tracy Morgan and Martin Lawrence. He also co-starred with Matthew McConaughey and Kate Hudson in “Fool’s Gold,” as well as opposite Steve Carell in “The 40 Year Old Virgin.” Hart’s additional film credits include: “Soul Plane” opposite Tom Arnold, Method Man and Snoop Dogg, “Not Easily Broken,” “Extreme Movie,” “Drillbit Taylor,” “Epic Movie,” “The Last Stand,” “Scary Movie 4,” “In the Mix,” “Meet Dave” and “Superhero Movie.” In 2009, Hart’s one-hour comedy special “I’m a Grown Little Man” on Comedy Central was one of the highest-rated specials for the network. Hart was also the host of BET’s classic stand-up comedy series “Comic View: One Mic Stand.”

Sponsors for this year’s BET AWARDS telecast include Coca-Cola Viewers’ Choice Award, Subway Sportsman of the Year and Subway Sportswoman of the Year.

For continuous BET AWARDS updates, please visit: http://www.bet.com/betawards, www.twitter.com/BETAWARDS (hash tag: #BETAWARDS) and Facebook fan page at www.facebook.com/TheBETAwards.

BET Networks will once again team up with Cossette Productions, famed producers of the GRAMMY® Awards, BET’s RIP THE RUNWAY, BET HONORS and of course the BET AWARDS, to handle production of the telecast. Stephen Hill, BET’s president of music programming, along with Lynne Harris Taylor, BET’s vice president of specials will executive produce the telecast.

The nominees for the 2011 BET AWARDS are:

                                Best Female R&B Artist
                                   Marsha Ambrosius
                                      Keri Hilson
                                    Jennifer Hudson

                                 Best Male R&B Artist
                                      Chris Brown
                                     Cee Lo Green
                                      Bruno Mars
                                      Trey Songz

                                      Best Group
                                   Diddy-Dirty Money
                                  Cali Swag District
                                       New Boyz
                                     Travis Porter

                                  Best Collaboration
                  B.o.B. f/ Haley Williams of Paramore - "Airplanes"
              Chris Brown f/ Lil Wayne & Busta Rhymes - "Look at Me Now"
                     Chris Brown f/ Tyga & Kevin McCall - "Deuces"
                 Waka Flocka Flame f/ Roscoe Dash & Wale - "No Hands"
                          Rihanna f/ Drake - "What's My Name"
                      Kanye West f/ Rihanna - "All of The Lights"

                               Best Male Hip Hop Artist
                                       Lil Wayne
                                       Rick Ross
                                      Kanye West

                              Best Female Hip Hop Artist
                                      Lola Monroe
                                      Nicki Minaj

                                   Video of the Year
                             Marsha Ambrosius - "Far Away"
                  B.o.B. f/ Hayley Williams of Paramore - "Airplanes"
              Chris Brown f/ Lil Wayne & Busta Rhymes - "Look at Me Now"
                           Keri Hilson - "Pretty Girl Rock"
                             Willow Smith - "Whip My Hair"
                           Kanye West f/ Pusha T - "Runaway"

                              Video Director of the Year
                                      Benny Boom
                                     Mr. Boomtown
                                    Chris Robinson
                                      Kanye West
                                     Hype Williams

                                    Best New Artist
                                        J. Cole
                                      Bruno Mars
                                     Willow Smith
                                      Wiz Khalifa

                                      Best Gospel
                                      Byron Cage
                                    Deitrick Haddon
                                       Mary Mary
                                  Karen Clark Sheard
                                  BeBe & CeCe Winans

                                     Best Actress
                                      Halle Berry
                                   Taraji P. Henson
                                      Regina King
                                      Zoe Saldana
                                   Kerry Washington

                                      Best Actor
                                      Laz Alonso
                                      Chris Brown
                                      Don Cheadle
                                      Idris Elba
                                      Jamie Foxx

                                   YoungStars Award
                                    Shenell Edmonds
                                      Keke Palmer
                                     Diggy Simmons
                                      Jaden Smith
                                     Willow Smith

                                      Best Movie
                                 "Death at a Funeral"
                                  "For Colored Girls"
                                   "The Book of Eli"
                      "Tyler Perry's Why Did I Get Married Too?"

                            Subway Sportswoman of the Year
                                   Tamika Catchings
                                    Candice Dupree
                                      Maya Moore
                                    Serena Williams
                                    Venus Williams

                             Subway Sportsman of the Year
                                    Carmelo Anthony
                                      Kobe Bryant
                                     LeBron James
                                     Derrick Rose
                                     Michael Vick

                          Coca-Cola Viewers' Choice Nominees
              Chris Brown f/ Lil Wayne & Busta Rhymes - "Look at Me Now"
                       Lil Wayne f/ Cory Gunz - "6 Foot 7 Foot"
                             Mindless Behavior - "My Girl"
                        Nicki Minaj f/ Drake - "Moment 4 Life"
                          Rihanna f/ Drake - "What's My Name"
                       Trey Songz f/ Nicki Minaj - "Bottoms Up"

                                     Centric Award
                                   Marsha Ambrosius
                                      Eric Benet
                                     Cee Lo Green
                                       R. Kelly

                            Best International Act: Africa
                                2Face Idibia (Nigeria)
                                   D'Banj (Nigeria)
                                    D-Black (Ghana)
                                Angelique Kidjo (Benin)
                                Fally Ipupa (Congo DR)
                                Teargas (South Africa)

                              Best International Act: UK
                                       VV Brown
                                     Laura Izibor
                                    Tinchy Stryder
                                     Tinie Tempah

*All times are ET/PT.

About BET Networks

BET Networks, a subsidiary of Viacom Inc. (NYSE: VIA, VIA.B), is the nation’s leading provider of quality entertainment, music, news and public affairs television programming for the African-American audience. The primary BET channel reaches more than 90 million households and can be seen in the United States, Canada, the Caribbean, the United Kingdom and sub-Saharan Africa. BET is the dominant African-American consumer brand with a diverse group of business extensions: BET.com, a leading Internet destination for Black entertainment, music, culture, and news; CENTRIC, a 24-hour entertainment network targeting the 25- to 54-year-old African-American audience; BET Digital Networks – BET Gospel and BET Hip Hop, attractive alternatives for cutting-edge entertainment tastes; BET Home Entertainment, a collection of BET-branded offerings for the home environment including DVDs and video-on-demand; BET Event Productions, a full-scale event management and production company with festivals and live events spanning the globe; BET Mobile, which provides ringtones, games and video content for wireless devices; and BET International, which operates BET in the United Kingdom and oversees the extension of BET network programming for global distribution.


Source: newswire

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