SC Justice Ginsburg unexpected pop culture icon
LOS ANGELES, June 18, (Agencies): Superhero blockbuster “Avengers: Endgame” was the top winner at the MTV Movie and TV awards on Monday in a show marked by messages of empowerment and self-esteem.
The Marvel movie, the second biggest box office hit of all time, took wins for best movie, villain (Josh Brolin’s Thanos) and hero (Robert Downey Jr’s Iron Man.)
But US Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the diminutive, 86-year-old liberal judge, was voted best real-life hero, cementing her status as an unexpected pop culture icon, especially among women. She did not attend the MTV ceremony in the California beach city of Santa Monica.
The MTV Movie and TV awards usually focus on crowd-pleasers and is an irreverent antidote to the more serious winter Hollywood awards season. Winners get popcorn shaped trophies and are chosen by fans voting online.
But while medieval fantasy “Game of Thrones” was named best TV show on Monday, other awards went to darker fare.
“Surviving R. Kelly”, in which seven women spoke on camera about what they said was years of sexual and emotional abuse by the “I Believe I Can Fly” singer, won best documentary.
The Lifetime network documentary led to Kelly being dropped by his record company and to criminal charges in Chicago of aggravated sexual assault involving four women, three of them minors. Kelly has pleaded not guilty and is awaiting trial.
“Survivors walked through the fire and then stood again to tell this story,” Brie Miranda Bryant, an executive with Lifetime, said in an acceptance speech. Elisabeth Moss, star of “The Handmaid’s Tale”, took the award for best performance in a TV show, a category that was entirely made up of women. The bleak drama series portrays a near future in which women are stripped of all their rights, including working and reading.
Brie Larson’s “Captain Marvel” triumphed in the best fight category, while MTV’s popular best kiss award went to newcomers Noah Centineo and Lana Condor from the Asian-led teen movie “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before”.
“Love who you want to love, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise,” Condor, 22, told the audience.
Actor, producer and wrestler Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson was given the Generation award for a career that encompasses more than 30 film and TV shows, including the “Fast and Furious” movie franchise.
Johnson told the audience that when he first came to Hollywood some 15 years ago, the entertainment industry didn’t know how to handle a 6-foot-4-inch, muscled, half black, half Samoan man, “so I decided I wasn’t going to conform to Hollywood, Hollywood was going to conform to me”.
Breakout singer Lizzo gave her first awards show performance with her hit single “Juice”, an anthem to self-esteem.
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson didn’t make a household name for himself by conforming to someone else’s idea of who he should be, an approach he encouraged others to take while accepting a top honor at the MTV Movie & TV Awards.
The actor, producer and former professional wrestler said embracing himself allowed him to carve his own space in the entertainment industry and become one of its biggest stars. He accepted MTV’s generation award with fanfare – running down the stage amidst a blend of hip-hop and Samoan dancers with screens reading “The Rock” in flaming letters behind him – during the show, which was taped Saturday in Santa Monica, California, and aired Monday night.
“The most powerful thing we can be is ourselves,” said Johnson, who is half-black and half-Samoan. He also reminded the audience of its responsibility to reach back for others in the midst of success. Johnson, 47, wasn’t the only one to use his platform during the show for empowerment.
Brie Larson, who won the best fight award for her battle against Minn-Erva (Gemma Chan) in “Captain Marvel”, brought her stunt doubles, Joanna Bennett and Renae Moneymaker, on stage to recognize them for their work.
Inclusivity and celebration seemed to be the themes of the night. The show included with a comedic take on a scene from Jordan Peele’s “Us,” featuring host Zachary Levi. Levi reminded everyone to nurture the kid in themselves and keep following their dreams into adulthood. Lizzo and Bazzi kept the crowd on its feet during their lively musical performances of “Juice” and “Paradise”, respectively.
The upbeat nature of the night didn’t stop some winners from getting serious. Lana Condor managed to bring thoughtfulness to one of the night’s more amusing awards.
“Kiss who you want to kiss. Love who you want to love, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise,” she said, accepting the best kiss honor with “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before” co-star Noah Centineo, who also won for breakthrough performance. Daniel Levy shared a similar sentiment after winning the best comedic performance award for “Schitt’s Creek”.
“If I’ve taken anything away from making ‘Schitt’s Creek’, it’s that kindness always wins, and love is best served unconditionally,” he said, wishing everyone a happy pride month.
Full list of winners:
* Best movie: Avengers: Endgame
* Best show: Game of Thrones
* Best performance in a movie: Lady Gaga (Ally) – ‘A Star is Born’
* Best performance in a show: Elisabeth Moss (June Osborne/Offred) – ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’
* Best hero: Robert Downey Jr (Tony Stark/Iron Man) – ‘Avengers: Endgame’
* Best villain: Josh Brolin (Thanos) – ‘Avengers: Endgame’
* Reality royalty: Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta
* Best comedic performance: Dan Levy (David Rose) – ‘Schitt’s Creek’
* Breakthough performance: Noah Centineo (Peter Kavinsky) – ‘To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before’
* Best fight: ‘Captain Marvel’ – Captain Marvel vs Minn-Erva
* Best documentary: Ruth Bader Ginsburg – ‘RBG’
* Most frightened performance: Sandra Bullock (Malorie) – ‘Bird Box’
* Best documentary: ‘Surviving R. Kelly’
* Best host: Nick Cannon – ‘Wild ‘n Out’
* Most meme-able moment: ‘The Bachelor’ – Colton Underwood jumps the fence
* Best musical moment: A Star is Born – ‘Shallow’