BET Keeps Rolling...

[E-Online Report]

Whitney, Denzel Best BET Awards
by Josh Grossberg
Jun 20, 2001, 10:00 AM PT


Whitney Houston and Denzel Washington were the best bets--make that BETs--Tuesday in Las Vegas.  The superstars were among the top winners at the inaugural Black Entertainment Television Awards, honoring the best of African-American pop culture.

An MIA Washington scored a Best Actor trophy for his role as the coach of a Virginia high school's first integrated football team in Remember the Titans, while Houston nabbed BET's Lifetime Achievement Award, giving props to both her chart-busting music and film careers.

Billed as the event where "black star power explodes," the first BET Awards covered film, music and sports and were chosen by a committee of industry executives, journalists and fans. The two-hour kudofest was broadcast live from the Vegas strip on the BET cable network.

Other big winners included hip-hop duo OutKast, which took home trophies for Best Male Group and Best Video ("Ms. Jackson"); Destiny's Child, which picked up the award for Female Group; and St. Louis-based hip-hopster Nelly, who was named Best New Artist.

BET's Viewer's Choice Award, voted on by Netizens, went to Lil' Bow Wow for his hit, "What's My Name."

In what might be considered an upset, Philadelphia 76ers star Allen Iverson beat out the Los Angeles Lakers' Shaquille O'Neal for Best Male Athlete, despite the Lakers' relatively easy win over the 76ers in last week's NBA Finals.

Undoubtedly, though, the night belonged to Houston, who was welcomed with a standing ovation after receiving an all-star tribute from diva-in-waiting Christina Aguilera and R&B crooner Luther Vandross.  After the six-time Grammy winner performed two of her songs, her mother, Cissy Houston, and young daughter, Bobbi Kristina Brown, came onstage to present the singer with the Lifetime Achievement Honor.   "God has blessed her with a glorious talent that will never be forgotten," Cissy Houston told the crowd.

"I'm every woman! I'm a survivor...the best is yet to come," a joyous Houston shouted as she accepted the award.

Other performers included rappers Jay-Z and Eve (who nabbed Male and Female Hip-Hop Awards, respectively), Snoop Dogg, Usher, Sisq, Lil' Bow Wow, OutKast, Destiny's Child and Patti LaBelle.   The show was hosted by the "Original Kings of Comedy" Steve Harvey and Cedric "The Entertainer."

Here's a complete rundown of the winners at the first BET Awards:

Lifetime Achievement: Whitney Houston.
Male Group: OutKast
Female Group: Destiny's Child
Male R&B artist: Musiq Soulchild
Female R&B Artist: Mary J. Blige
Male Hip-Hop Artist: Jay Z
Female Hip-Hop Artist: Eve
New Artist: Nelly
Gospel Artist: Donnie McClurkin
Video of the Year: OutKast, "Ms. Jackson"'
Actor in a Film: Denzel Washington, Remember the Titans
Actress in a Film: Sanaa Lathan, Love and Basketball
Male Athlete of the Year: Allen Iverson
Female Athlete of the Year: Marion Jones
Viewer's Choice: Lil' Bow Wow, "What's My Name"

NEWSFILE: 21 JUNE 2001

 

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