2010 MTV Video Music Awards

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2010 MTV Video Music Awards
DateSunday, September 12, 2010
LocationNokia Theatre (Los Angeles, California)
CountryUnited States
Hosted byChelsea Handler[1]
Most awardsLady Gaga (8)
Most nominationsLady Gaga (13)
Television/radio coverage
NetworkMTV and VH1
Produced byJesse Ignjatovic
Dave Sirulnick
Directed byHamish Hamilton
← 2009 · MTV Video Music Awards · 2011 →

The 2010 MTV Video Music Awards took place on September 12, 2010 at Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles, honoring the best music videos from the previous year. Chelsea Handler hosted the event, the first woman in sixteen years – since the 1994 MTV Video Music Awards – to do so.[1]

Being nominated 13 times, Lady Gaga became the most-nominated artist in VMA history for a single year and subsequently became the first female artist to receive two nominations for Video of the Year when both "Bad Romance" and "Telephone" were nominated for the award.[2] She was also the top winner of the night when "Telephone" won Best Collaboration and "Bad Romance" won seven separate awards including Video of the Year, bringing her total number of moonmen to eight. When she accepted her award for Video of the Year, she also announced the title of her second studio album, Born This Way and sang an excerpt from the title track.[3] She accepted the award while wearing a dress complete with a hat, purse, and shoes all made entirely from cuts of raw meat which drew backlash from PETA.[4]

Overall, the show grabbed 11.4 million viewers – the largest audience for a Video Music Awards show since 2002.[5]


Artist(s) Song(s)
Nicki Minaj (featuring will.i.am) "Your Love" (intro) / "Check It Out"
Main show
"Not Afraid" / "Love the Way You Lie"
Justin Bieber "U Smile" (intro) / "Baby" / "Somebody to Love"
Usher "DJ Got Us Fallin' in Love" / "OMG"
Florence and the Machine "Dog Days Are Over"
Taylor Swift "Innocent"
Mary J. Blige
Swizz Beatz
Bruno Mars
"Nothin' on You" (intro) / "Airplanes" / "The Only Exception"
Linkin Park "The Catalyst"
Kanye West (featuring Pusha T) "Runaway"

The house artist was Deadmau5. The following performed along with him:

Outside in the parking lot there were the following performances:[citation needed]

Source: Performers


Winners are in bold text.

Video of the Year[edit]

Lady Gaga – "Bad Romance"

Best Male Video[edit]

Eminem – "Not Afraid"

Best Female Video[edit]

Lady Gaga – "Bad Romance"

Best New Artist[edit]

Justin Bieber (featuring Ludacris) – "Baby"

Best Pop Video[edit]

Lady Gaga – "Bad Romance"

Best Rock Video[edit]

Thirty Seconds to Mars – "Kings and Queens"

Best Hip-Hop Video[edit]

Eminem – "Not Afraid"

Best Dance Music Video[edit]

Lady Gaga – "Bad Romance"

Best Collaboration[edit]

Lady Gaga (featuring Beyoncé) – "Telephone"

Breakthrough Video[edit]

The Black Keys – "Tighten Up"

Best Direction[edit]

Lady Gaga – "Bad Romance" (Director: Francis Lawrence)

Best Choreography[edit]

Lady Gaga – "Bad Romance" (Choreographer: Laurieann Gibson)

Best Special Effects[edit]

Muse – "Uprising" (Special Effects: Humble and Sam Stephens)

Best Art Direction[edit]

Florence + the Machine – "Dog Days Are Over" (Art Directors: Louise Corcoran and Aldene Johnson)

Best Editing[edit]

Lady Gaga – "Bad Romance" (Editor: Jarrett Fijal)

Best Cinematography[edit]

Jay-Z and Alicia Keys – "Empire State of Mind" (Director of Photography: John Perez)

Latino Artist of the Year[edit]




  • Sway Calloway – presented Best Dance Music Video and Best Collaboration

Main show[edit]

Source: presenters


will.i.am's blackface criticism[edit]

Some viewers took offense to the producer/ rapper will.i.am's outfit, especially the dark makeup, which, to some fans, was reminiscent of the antiquated, racially charged practice of blackface. After fans blasted the rapper online, he took to Twitter to defend the look as artistic expression and not an embrace of the controversial maquillage typically used to lampoon African-Americans. Will.i.am responded to the backlash on his Twitter stating "1st. just because I where all black including head mask as expression and emphasize my outfit, it shouldn't be looked at as racial," Will tweeted. "Let go of the past. there are far more important things 2 bark about. (Jobs, health, education) not a black man wearing all black everything." Will.i.am insisted the face paint was a harmless costume choice and that fans concerned with the image Will's look projected should focus on larger issues.[7]

Lady Gaga's meat dress[edit]

While accepting her award for Video of the Year, presented by legendary singer and actress Cher, Lady Gaga wore a dress made entirely from cuts of raw meat. The dress bore a resemblance to an artwork, Vanitas: Flesh Dress for an Albino Anorectic, created by Canadian artist Jana Sterbak in 1987.[8] Along with the dress, her hat, shoes, and purse were all made from meat as well. PETA president Ingrid Newkirk issued a statement concerning the controversial outfit. After questioning whether the meat was real or not, Newkirk was quick to disparage Gaga saying, "Meat is the decomposing flesh of a tormented animal who didn't want to die, and after a few hours under the TV lights, it would smell like the rotting flesh it is and likely be crawling in maggots--not too attractive, really." Franc Fernandez, the designer of the meat dress, said later in an interview with MTV, "...it's not a sticky meat. It's not a messy dress at all, surprisingly. [...] It's actually very clean meat, very sturdy and strong and doesn't run at all. [...] The meat dries out, rather than rotting. It becomes jerky."[9] Gaga later explained to Ellen DeGeneres that the outfit exhibited her disapproval with the United States military's Don't ask, don't tell policy and further clarified, "If we don't stand up for what we believe in and if we don't fight for our rights, pretty soon we're going to have as much rights as the meat on our own bones. And I am not a piece of meat."[10] She also commented on the outfit's nature, "...it is certainly no disrespect to anyone that is vegan or vegetarian. As you know, I am the most judgment-free human being on the earth." Afterwards, DeGeneres, who is a vegan, jokingly gave Gaga a bikini and skirt made from lettuce and other various vegetables.[11][4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Chelsea Handler To Host The 2010 MTV Video Music Awards | MTV Video Music Awards. Mtv.com (2010-08-19). Retrieved on 2013-08-25.
  2. ^ Kaufman, Gil (August 3, 2010). "Lady Gaga's 13 VMA Nominations: How Do They Measure Up?". MTV Networks. Archived from the original on September 5, 2010. Retrieved September 18, 2010.
  3. ^ Kreps, Daniel (September 13, 2010). "Lady Gaga Names Her New Album 'Born This Way'". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on September 16, 2010. Retrieved September 13, 2010.
  4. ^ a b Vena, Jocelyn (September 13, 2010). "Lady Gaga Meat Dress Draws Criticism From PETA". MTV Networks. Archived from the original on September 14, 2010. Retrieved September 13, 2010.
  5. ^ Carter, Kelley L.. (2010-09-13) 2010 VMAs Nab MTV's Biggest Ratings Since 2002 | MTV Video Music Awards. Mtv.com. Retrieved on 2013-08-25.
  6. ^ "MTV Music".
  7. ^ Everett, Cristina (September 13, 2010). "Elliptical vs. treadmill: Which will give you the better workout?". Daily News. New York. Archived from the original on September 15, 2010. Retrieved September 13, 2010.
  8. ^ Vanitas: Flesh Dress for an Albino Anorectic – Collections – Walker Art Center Archived 2010-12-21 at the Wayback Machine. Collections.walkerart.org. Retrieved on 2013-08-25.
  9. ^ Clott, Sharon (September 13, 2010). "Everything You Wanted To Know About Lady Gaga's VMA Meat Dress!". MTV Networks. Archived from the original on September 17, 2010. Retrieved September 18, 2010.
  10. ^ Gray, Richard (2012). The Performance Identities of Lady Gaga. McFarland and Company Inc. Publishers. p. 112.
  11. ^ Newkirk, Ingrid (13 September 2010). "Lady Gaga's Meat Dress". PETA. Archived from the original on 15 September 2010. Retrieved 13 September 2010.

External links[edit]