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Nicki Minaj to Receive Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award at MTV VMAs

Photo Courtesy Universal Music Group
Nicki Minaj is taking home one of the top honors at this year's MTV Video Music Awards.

The network announced on Monday that the "Super Bass" rapper will be the 35th recipient of the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award.

First established in 1984 — it was renamed to honor Jackson in 1991. MTV said the award is presented to artists for "their outstanding contributions and profound impact on music video and popular culture."

“Nicki has broken barriers for women in hip-hop with her versatility and creative artistry,” said Bruce Gillmer, chief content officer of music at Paramount+ and president of music, of the reasons for her selection.

He added, “She has shifted the music industry and cemented her status as a global superstar with her crossover appeal, genre-defying style and continuing to be unapologetically ‘Nicki.'"

Consisting of a gold-plated version of the Moon Person, the VMAs trophy mascot presented in silver to other category winners, the Vanguard Award puts Minaj in rare company. Legends David Bowie, The Beatles, and director Richard Lester shared the inaugural honor at the first VMAs in 1984. Other notable recipients include Madonna, Janet Jackson, LL Cool J, Jennifer Lopez, and Missy Elliott.

Minaj will receive the award on Aug. 28, at New Jersey’s Prudential Center. when she is also scheduled to perform at the VMAs. She joins previously announced performers Anitta, J Balvin, Marshmello x Khalid and Panic! at the Disco

In addition to her Vanguard Award, the five-time MTV trophy winner has a chance to take home the trophy for Best Hip-Hop Video. Minaj scored her seventeenth nomination for her single “Do We Have a Problem?” — which features fellow rapper Lil Baby.

If she gets the win, it would be her first since 2019, when Minaj won for Best Power Anthem (“Hot Girl Summer”).

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