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    Everything To Know About The 2021 VMAs, Including Performances, Nominations, And How To Watch

    The show is taking place live this Sunday, Sept. 12, at 8 p.m.

    The MTV Video Music Awards are right around the corner, and this year's annual ceremony — which will broadcast live this Sunday, Sept. 12 — marks an exciting return to the show's traditional format after it was adapted to meet COVID safety requirements in 2020.

    Someone holding a smartphone with the VMA logo on the screen
    Sopa Images / SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

    The ceremony is taking place at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, and it will unveil at least one element that we haven't seen before — the VMA's moonperson trophies have undergone a redesign by artist Kehinde Wiley, which will debut at this weekend's show.

    An astronaut holding up an MTV flag
    Bryan Bedder / Getty Images for MTV

    The VMAs are also partnering with 9/11 Day, a nonprofit, on a series of events this week to honor those impacted by the 2001 attacks, since Saturday is the 20th anniversary.

    Doja Cat is a centerpiece of the upcoming VMA program. Not only will she host the event, but the artist is also due to perform at the show for the second year in a row, and she's up for awards in five different categories.

    Doja Cat performing on stage
    Shareif Ziyadat / WireImage via Getty Images

    "I'm hosting the 2021 #VMAs this year Wowowowowowow," the Planet Her singer captioned an Instagram post unveiling the news.

    As usual, the ceremony will feature live performances by some of the most popular names in music right now. A handful of them are making their VMA debuts at Sunday's show, and several are nominated for multiple awards.

    Dave J Hogan / Getty Images, John Lamparski / Getty Images, Rich Fury / Getty Images, Jason Koerner / Getty Images, Denise Truscello / Getty Images for Wynn Las Vegas, Barry Brecheisen / WireImage via Getty Images

    Olivia Rodrigo, Kacey Musgraves, Lil Nas X, Camila Cabello, Justin Bieber, Kim Petras, Chlöe of Chloe x Halle, Machine Gun Kelly, Polo G, Sean Mendes, Swedish House Mafia, and Twenty One Pilots are all scheduled to perform during the award show, alongside Doja Cat. Lorde originally planned to return to the VMA stage with them, but canceled her appearance last week "due to a change in production elements," according to the VMAs.

    The award categories' extensive nomination lists recognize many of the great songs, albums, videos, and artists that kept us entertained, intrigued, and inspired during the pandemic. In addition to Foo Fighters, who will receive the VMAs' Global Icon Award, here's every nominee contending for titles this year:

    BEST NEW ARTIST

    24kGoldn

    Giveon

    The Kid LAROI

    Olivia Rodrigo

    Polo G

    Saweetie

    SONG OF SUMMER

    Billie Eilish – "happier than ever"

    BTS – "Butter"

    Camila Cabello – "Don't Go Yet"

    DJ Khaled ft. Lil Baby & Lil Durk – "Every Chance I Get"

    Doja Cat – "Need To Know"

    Dua Lipa – "Levitating"

    Ed Sheeran – "Bad Habits"

    Giveon – "Heartbreak Anniversary"

    Justin Bieber ft. Daniel Cesar & Giveon – "Peaches"

    The Kid Laroi With Justin Bieber – "Stay"

    Lil Nas X ft. Jack Harlow – "Industry Baby"

    Lizzo ft. Cardi B – "Rumors"

    Mean Thee Stallion – "Thot Shit"

    Normani ft. Cardi B – "Wild Side"

    Olivia Rodrigo – "Good 4 U"

    Shawn Mendes & Tainy – "Summer of Love"

    GROUP OF THE YEAR

    Blackpink

    BTS

    CNCO

    Foo Fighters

    Jonas Brothers

    Maroon 5

    Silk Sonic

    Twenty One Pilots

    VIDEO OF THE YEAR

    Cardi B ft. Megan Thee Stallion – "WAP"

    DJ Khaled ft. Drake – "POPSTAR" (Starring Justin Bieber) 

    Doja Cat ft. SZA – "Kiss Me More"

    Ed Sheeran – "Bad Habits"

    Lil Nas X – "MONTERO (Call Me By Your Name)"

    The Weeknd – "Save Your Tears"

    ARTIST OF THE YEAR

    Ariana Grande

    Doja Cat

    Justin Bieber

    Megan Thee Stallion

    Olivia Rodrigo

    SONG OF THE YEAR

    24kGoldn ft. iann dior – "Mood"

    Bruno Mars, Anderson .Paak, Silk Sonic – "Leave The Door Open"

    BTS – "Dynamite"

    Cardi B ft. Megan Thee Stallion – "WAP"

    Dua Lipa – "Levitating"

    Olivia Rodrigo – "drivers license"

    PUSH PERFORMANCE OF THE YEAR

    Wallows – "Are You Bored Yet?," September 2020:

    Ashnikko – "Daisy," October 2020

    SAINt JHN – "Gorgeous," November 2020: 

    24kGoldn – "Coco," December 2020

    JC Stewart – "Break My Heart," January 2021

    Latto – "Sex Lies," February 2021

    Madison Beer – "Selfish," March 2021

    The Kid LAROI – "WITHOUT YOU," April 2021

    Olivia Rodrigo – "drivers license," May 2021

    girl in red – "Serotonin," June 2021

    Fousheé – "my slime," July 2021

    jxdn – "Think About Me," August 2021

    BEST COLLABORATION

    24kGoldn ft. iann dior – "Mood"

    Cardi B ft. Megan Thee Stallion – "WAP"

    Doja Cat ft. SZA – "Kiss Me More"

    Drake ft. Lil Durk – "Laugh Now Cry Later" 

    Justin Bieber ft. Daniel Caesar, Giveon – "Peaches"

    Miley Cyrus ft. Dua Lipa – "Prisoner"

    BEST POP

    Ariana Grande – "positions"

    Billie Eilish – "Therefore I Am"

    BTS – "Butter"

    Harry Styles – "Treat People With Kindness"

    Justin Bieber ft. Daniel Caesar, Giveon – "Peaches"

    Olivia Rodrigo – "good 4 u"

    Shawn Mendes – "Wonder"

    Taylor Swift – "willow"

    BEST HIP-HOP

    Cardi B ft. Megan Thee Stallion – "WAP"

    Drake ft. Lil Durk – "Laugh Now Cry Later"

    Lil Baby ft. Megan Thee Stallion – "On Me (remix)"

    Moneybagg Yo – "Said Sum"

    Polo G – "RAPSTAR"

    Travis Scott ft. Young Thug & M.I.A. – "FRANCHISE"

    BEST R&B

    Beyoncé, Blue Ivy, SAINt JHN, WizKid – "BROWN SKIN GIRL"

    Bruno Mars, Anderson .Paak, Silk Sonic – "Leave The Door Open"

    Chris Brown and Young Thug – "Go Crazy"

    Giveon – "HEARTBREAK ANNIVERSARY"

    H.E.R. ft. Chris Brown – "Come Through"

    SZA – "Good Days"

    BEST K-POP

    (G)I-DLE – "DUMDi DUMDi"

    BLACKPINK and Selena Gomez – "Ice Cream"

    BTS – "Butter"

    Monsta X – "Gambler"

    SEVENTEEN – "Ready to love"

    TWICE – "Alcohol-Free"

    BEST LATIN

    Bad Bunny x Jhay Cortez – "Dákiti"

    Billie Eilish & ROSALÍA – "Lo Vas A Olvidar"

    Black Eyed Peas and Shakira – "GIRL LIKE ME"

    J. Balvin, Dua Lipa, Bad Bunny, Tainy – "UN DIA (ONE DAY)"

    Karol G – "Bichota"

    Maluma – "Hawái"

    BEST ROCK

    Evanescence – "Use My Voice"

    Foo Fighters – "Shame Shame"

    John Mayer – "Last Train Home" 

    The Killers – "My Own Soul's Warning" 

    Kings Of Leon – "The Bandit"

    Lenny Kravitz – "Raise Vibration"

    BEST ALTERNATIVE

    Bleachers – "Stop Making This Hurt"

    Glass Animals – "Heat Waves" 

    Imagine Dragons – "Follow You"

    Machine Gun Kelly ft. blackbear – "my ex's best friend" 

    Twenty One Pilots – "Shy Away"

    WILLOW ft. Travis Barker – "t r a n s p a r e n t s o u l"

    VIDEO FOR GOOD

    Billie Eilish – "Your Power"

    Demi Lovato – "Dancing With The Devil"

    H.E.R. – "Fight For You"

    Kane Brown – "Worldwide Beautiful"

    Lil Nas X – "MONTERO (Call Me By Your Name)"

    Pharrell Williams ft. JAY-Z – "Entrepreneur"

    BEST DIRECTION

    Billie Eilish – "Your Power," directed by Billie Eilish

    DJ Khaled ft. Drake – "POPSTAR (Starring Justin Bieber)," directed by Julien Christian Lutz aka Director X

    Lil Nas X – "MONTERO (Call Me By Your Name)," directed by Lil Nas X and Tanu Muino

    Taylor Swift – "willow," directed by Taylor Swift

    Travis Scott ft. Young Thug & M.I.A – "Franchise," directed by Travis Scott

    Tyler, The Creator – "LUMBERJACK," directed by Wolf Haley

    BEST ART DIRECTION

    Beyoncé, Shatta Wale, Major Lazer – "ALREADY," art direction by Susan Linns, Gerard Santos

    Ed Sheeran – "Bad Habits," art direction by Alison Dominitz

    Lady Gaga – "911," art direction by Tom Foden, Peter Andrus

    Lil Nas X – "MONTERO (Call Me By Your Name)," art direction by John Richoux

    Saweetie ft. Doja Cat – "Best Friend," art direction by Art Haynes

    Taylor Swift – "willow," art direction by Ethan Tobman, Regina Fernandez

    BEST CHOREOGRAPHY

    Ariana Grande – "34+35," choreography by Brian Nicholson, Scott Nicholson

    BTS – "Butter," choreography by SON SUNG DEUK with BHM PERFORMANCE DIRECTING TEAM

    Ed Sheeran – "Bad Habits," choreography by Natricia Bernard

    Foo Fighters – "Shame Sham,"  choreography by Nina McNeely

    Harry Styles – "Treat People With Kindness," choreography by Paul Roberts

    Marshmello & Halsey – "Be Kind," choreography by Dani Vitale

    BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY

    Beyoncé, Blue Ivy, SAINt JHN, WizKid – "BROWN SKIN GIRL," cinematography by Benoit Soler, Malik H. Sayeed, MOHAMMAED ATTA AHMED, Santiago Gonzalez, Ryan Helfant

    Billie Eilish – "Therefore I Am," cinematography by Rob Witt

    Foo Fighters – "Shame Shame," cinematography by Santiago Gonzalez

    Justin Bieber ft. Chance The Rapper – "Holy," cinematography by Elias Talbot

    Lady Gaga – "911," cinematography by Jeff Cronenweth

    Lorde – "Solar Power," cinematography by Andrew Stroud

    BEST EDITING

    Bruno Mars, Anderson .Paak, Silk Sonic – "Leave The Door Open," editing by Troy Charbonnet

    BTS – "Butter," editing by Yong Seok Choi from Lumpens

    Drake – "What's Next," editing by Noah Kendal

    Harry Styles – "Treat People With Kindness," editing by Claudia Wass

    Justin Bieber ft. Daniel Caesar, Giveon – "Peaches," editing by Mark Mayr, Vinnie Hobbs

    Miley Cyrus ft. Dua Lipa – "Prisoner"

    BEST VISUAL EFFECTS

    Bella Poarch – "Build A Bitch," visual effects by Andrew Donoho, Denhov Visuals, Denis Strahhov, Rein Jakobson, Vahur Kuusk, Tatjana Pavlik, Yekaterina Vetrova

    Coldplay – "Higher Power," visual effects by Mathematic

    Doja Cat & The Weeknd – "You Right," visual effects by La Pac, Anthony Lestremau, Julien Missaire, Petr Shkolniy, Alexi Bailla, Micha Sher, Antoine Hache, Mikros MPC, Nicolas Huget, Guillaume Ho Tsong Fang, Benjamin Lenfant, Stephane Pivron, MPC Bangalore, Chanakya Chander, Raju Ganesh, David Rouxel

    Glass Animals – "Tangerin," visual effects by Ronan Fourreau

    Lil Nas X – "MONTERO (Call Me By Your Name)," visual effects by Mathematic

    P!NK – "All I Know So Far," visual effects by Dave Meyers, Freenjoy Inc

    Wondering how to watch? Tune in to MTV this Sunday, Sept. 12, at 8 p.m. ET, or stream the show live online via CMT, Comedy Central, Logo, MTV2, Nickelodeon, Paramount Network, Pop, TV Land, VH1, or The CW Network. Streaming will also be available through Paramount+.