The BET Networks held its press conference for the BET Awards today in New York City. Stephen G. Hill, President of Music Programming and Specials, BET Networks announced presenters and revealed this year's host will be high-grossing actor Samuel L. Jackson, a departure from the telecast's normal selection of comedians like Steve Harvey, Monique, Jamie Foxx, and most recently Kevin Hart. Jackson, followed by Shaft theme music, appeared at the conference via a pre-recorded video announcing how excited he was about hosting, "It will be too big too miss!" Hill commented on the widely expected Whitney Houston tribute, without revealing much detail, he said, "We will deliver."
Mase and Frankie Beverly will be honored with this year's Cadillac Lifetime Achievement Award. Beverly took the stage speaking about never being honored before in his career after 50 years in the game, and 35 years of near non-stop touring around the world. The long-time performer known for singing on the festival circuit initially declined the honor. "I initially said no, but it's bigger than just me...after talking to my fans and people who really care about us, I decided we should do this."
The nominees was presented by a slew of relatively new artists—many actually nominated in the "Best New Artist' category including Big Sean, Melanie Fiona, Mindless Behavior, Diggy Simmons, "X-Factor's" Astro, and ASAP Rockie. Kanye West leads the pack with a roaring seven nominations. Beyonce follows with six, and Jay-Z comes in with five. Chris Brown and Nicki Minaj have been confirmed as the first performers of this years show.
The BET Awards will be held at the historic Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles. The show will premiere on Tuesday, July 3 8pm EST.
See below for all nominations:
Best Female R&B Artist
• Marsha Ambrosius • Beyoncé • Mary J. Blige • Melanie Fiona • Rihanna
Best Male R&B Artist
• Chris Brown • Bruno Mars • Miguel • Trey Songz • Usher
• Bad Meets Evil • Diddy-Dirty Money • Maybach Music Group • Mindless Behavior • The Throne (Jay-Z & Kanye West)
• Beyoncé featuring J. Cole, "Party" • Big Sean featuring Kanye West & Roscoe Dash, "Marvin & Chardonnay" • DJ Khaled featuring Drake, Rick Ross & Lil Wayne, "I'm On One" • Drake featuring Lil Wayne & Tyga, "The Motto" • The Throne (Jay-Z & Kanye West) featuring Otis Redding, "Otis" • Wale featuring Miguel, "Lotus Flower Bomb"
Best Male Hip-Hop Artist
• Big Sean • Drake • J. Cole • Lil Wayne • Rick Ross • Young Jeezy
Best Female Hip-Hop Artist
• Diamond • Nicki Minaj • Brianna Perry • Trina
Video of the Year
• Beyoncé, "Countdown" • Beyoncé, "Love On Top" • The Throne (Jay-Z & Kanye West), "N---as in Paris" • The Throne (Jay-Z & Kanye West) featuring Otis Redding, "Otis" • Usher, "Climax"
Video Director of the Year
• Beyoncé & Alan Ferguson • Benny Boom • Chris Brown & Godfrey Tabarez • Kanye West • Hype Williams
Best New Artist
• A$AP Rocky • Big Sean • Diggy • Future • Meek Mill
• Yolanda Adams • Kim Burrell • James Fortune & FIYA • Fred Hammond • Trin-I-Tee 5:7
• Angela Bassett • Viola Davis • Taraji P. Henson • Regina King • Zoe Saldana
• Don Cheadle • Common • Idris Elba • Kevin Hart • Denzel Washington
Young Stars Award
• Astro • Diggy • Jacob Latimore • Keke Palmer • Willow Smith
• Good Deeds • Jumping the Broom • Laugh at My Pain • Red Tails • The Help
Subway Sportswoman of the Year
• Skylar Diggins • Brittney Griner • Candace Parker • Serena Williams • Venus Williams
Subway Sportsman of the Year
• Carmelo Anthony • Kobe Bryant • Victor Cruz • Kevin Durant • LeBron James
Coca-Cola Viewers' Choice Award
• Beyoncé, "Love on Top" • Chris Brown, "Turn Up the Music" • Drake featuring Lil Wayne & Tyga, "The Motto" • Mindless Behavior, "Hello" • The Throne (Jay-Z & Kanye West) featuring Otis Redding, "Otis" • Wale featuring Miguel, "Lotus Flower Bomb"
• Common • Estelle • Robert Glasper • Robin Thicke • Tyrese
Best International Act: Africa
• Camp Mulla (Kenya) • Ice Prince (Nigeria) • Lira (South Africa) • Mokobe (Mali) • Sarkodie (Ghana) • Wizkid (Nigeria)
Best International Act: U.K.
• Estelle • Labrinth • Emeli Sandé • Sway • Wretch 32