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The BET Awards were established in 2001 by the Black Entertainment Television network to celebrate African Americans and other American minorities in music, acting, sports, and other fields of entertainment over the past year. The awards are presented annually, and are broadcast live on BET. The annual presentation ceremony features performances by artists, and some of the awards of more popular interest are presented in a televised ceremony.
|BET Awards 2019|
|Awarded for||Outstanding achievements in the entertainment industry|
|First awarded||June 19, 2001|
The BET Award Trophy, inspired by three words - aspire, ascend, achieve, was designed by artist/sculptor Carlos "Mare139" Rodriguez. OutKast won the first award trophy during the first ceremony in 2001. In 2007, Society Awards, the New York firm who manufactures the award, enhanced the quality of the trophy design using plated steel and black crystal.
TV viewers (in millions):
List of ceremoniesEdit
The inaugural ceremony in 2001 was held at the Paris Las Vegas resort on the Las Vegas Strip. From 2002 to 2005, the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood hosted the awards. From 2006 to 2012, the ceremonies were held at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles. The ceremony was moved to the Microsoft Theater at L.A. Live in 2013.
|1st||June 19, 2001||Paris Las Vegas||Las Vegas||Steve Harvey and Cedric the Entertainer|
|2nd||June 29, 2002||Kodak Theatre||Los Angeles|
|3rd||June 24, 2003||Mo'Nique|
|4th||June 29, 2004|
|5th||June 28, 2005||Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith|
|6th||June 27, 2006||Shrine Auditorium||Damon Wayans|
|7th||June 26, 2007||Mo'Nique|
|8th||June 24, 2008||D. L. Hughley|
|9th||June 28, 2009||Jamie Foxx|
|10th||June 27, 2010||Queen Latifah|
|11th||June 26, 2011||Kevin Hart|
|12th||July 1, 2012||Samuel L. Jackson|
|13th||June 30, 2013||Microsoft Theater||Chris Tucker|
|14th||June 29, 2014||Chris Rock|
|15th||June 28, 2015||Anthony Anderson and Tracee Ellis Ross|
|16th||June 26, 2016|
|17th||June 25, 2017||Leslie Jones|
|18th||June 24, 2018||Jamie Foxx|
|19th||June 23, 2019|
There is a voting academy made up of about 500 people from the music industry, media, and bloggers. BET sends out ballots electronically and voters nominate in all the different categories who they think should be award nominees. These are collated by a group called "Yangaroo" that works on other awards shows as well, and they narrow it to the top five nominees, and send that list back out to the academy to vote on the winner.
- Best Actor & Actress of the year
- Best Gospel Artist (2001–2016)
- J Cool Like That Award (2006–2007)
- J Award (2008–2009)
- Centric Award (2010–2017)
- Best International Act: Africa (2011–2017)
- Best International Act: UK (2011–2016)
- FANdemonium Award (2010–2016)
- International Viewers' Choice Award (2015–2017)
- Best International Act: Europe (2017)
The BET Lifetime Achievement, Humanitarian and Ultimate Icon Award recipients, along with the nominees for other categories are announced in a press conference. At the awards ceremony a mini-documentary is shown covering the honorees' life. The awards are given out separately. The Ultimate Icon Award was created in 2015 and presented in the ceremony.
- Lifetime Achievement
The BET Lifetime Achievement Award is given a veteran artist or group who has made notable contributions to the music industry. The honoree is paid tribute to by current popular singers who perform the honoree's most recognized songs. The honoree will usually perform themselves after being paid tribute.
- 2001: Whitney Houston
- 2002: Earth Wind & Fire
- 2003: James Brown
- 2004: The Isley Brothers
- 2005: Gladys Knight
- 2006: Chaka Khan
- 2007: Diana Ross
- 2008: Al Green
- 2009: The O'Jays
- 2010: Prince
- 2011: Patti LaBelle
- 2012: Maze Featuring Frankie Beverly
- 2013: Charlie Wilson
- 2014: Lionel Richie
- 2015: Smokey Robinson
- 2016: Samuel L. Jackson
- 2017: New Edition
- 2018: Anita Baker
- 2019: TBA
In 2002, at the second annual BET Awards, the category for the BET Award Humanitarian Award was created. The Humanitarian Award is given to a celebrity philanthropist who donates their time and money to a charitable cause.
- 2002: Muhammad Ali
- 2003: Earvin "Magic" Johnson
- 2004: Danny Glover
- 2005: Denzel Washington and Pauletta Washington
- 2006: Harry Belafonte
- 2007: Don Cheadle
- 2008: Quincy Jones
- 2009: Alicia Keys and Wyclef Jean
- 2010: John Legend
- 2011: Steve Harvey
- 2012: Rev. Al Sharpton
- 2013: Dwyane Wade
- 2014: Myrlie Evers-Williams
- 2015: Tom Joyner
- 2016: Jesse Williams
- 2017: Chance the Rapper
- 2018: Naomi Wadler, Mamoudou Gassama, Justin Blackman, Shaun King, Anthony Borges and James Shaw Jr.
- Ultimate Icon
In 2015 and 2018, at the fifteenth and eighteenth annual BET Awards, the category of the Ultimate Icon Award was created. It is given to a veteran artist whose career is deemed iconic by fans and critics alike for their notable contributions in the music, dance and music video fields.
Most nominated and winning artistsEdit
Below are the current rankings for the most wins and most nominated artist (male & female):
Most wins (as of 2018)
|Nicki Minaj||Kanye West|
Most nominations (as of 2017)
This is a list of multiple nominated performers, athletes & actors with 5 or more career nominations. Beyoncé is currently the most nominated performer with 61 nominations, solo and with Destiny's Child.
- Lil Wayne 28 solo; 5 w/ Young Money
- Kanye West 26 solo; 5 w/ Watch The Throne
- Erica Campbell 2 solo; 11 w/ Mary Mary
- 2 Chainz
- 50 Cent
- Angela Bassett
- ASAP Rocky 6 solo; 2 w/ ASAP Mob
- Benny Boom
- Big Sean
- Busta Rhymes
- Diddy 5 solo; 3 w/ Diddy-Dirty Money
- Hype Williams
- Idris Elba
- John Legend
- Marsha Ambrosius 4 solo; 4 w/ Floetry
- Omarion 2 solo; 6 w/ B2K
- Justin Timberlake
- Rick Ross
- Don Cheadle
- Erykah Badu
- Halle Berry
- Jennifer Hudson
- Kelly Rowland 1 solo; 6 w/ Destiny's Child
- Keyshia Cole
- Kirk Franklin
- Mariah Carey
- R. Kelly
- Anthony Hamilton
- August Alsina
- Benny Boom
- CeeLo Green 2 solo; 4 w/ Gnarls Barkley
- Destiny's Child
- Keri Hilson
- Lil Jon 3 solo; 3 w/ Lil' Jon and the Eastside Boyz
- Lil' Kim
- Musiq Soulchild
- Samuel L. Jackson
- Yolanda Adams
- Bow Wow
- Carmelo Anthony
- Donnie McClurkin
- Gabrielle Union
- Jill Scott
- Keke Palmer
- Melanie Fiona
- Mindless Behavior
- Pusha T 3 solo; 2 w/ The Clipse
- Regina King
- Solange Knowles
- Willow Smith
- "Carlos Mare aka Mare139 Prints and Original Art | 1xRUN". 1xRUN. Retrieved 2017-03-29.
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- "The "BET Awards" '10 Remains The #1 Cable Awards Show, Drawing 7.4 Million Total Viewers". 29 June 2010.
- "Cable Top 25: 'BET Awards,' 'True Blood, 'NASCAR' and 'Burn Notice' Top Weekly Cable Viewing". 28 June 2011.
- "Cable Top 25: 'The 2012 BET Awards' Tops Cable Viewership For Week Ending July 1, 2012". 3 July 2012.
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- "BET Awards Ratings Rise to 7.9 Million Viewers With Host Chris Rock". 30 June 2014.
- "TV Ratings: BET Awards Dip to 6.5 Million Viewers".
- Patten, Dominic (27 June 2016). "BET Awards Viewership Rises Over 2015 With Simulcast On 12 Viacom Nets".