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Beyoncé's ‘Lemonade’ nominated for 11 MTV Video Music Awards

Beyonce’s Formation
Beyoncé on the New Orleans set of “Lemonade” with some of the circle of women featured in the one-hour film that debuted on HBO.
(Parkwood Entertainment)

Beyoncé’s “Lemonade” has emerged as a serious award season contender. The concept musical drama, which recently landed four Emmy nods, dominates the crop of nominees for the 2016 MTV Video Music Awards, which the network unveiled  Tuesday. 

Incorporating bits of narrative fiction, documentary and extended music video, work from the hour-long film — it ties together the star’s latest visual album, also titled “Lemonade” — landed 11 nods for Beyoncé, a new personal best for the singer. 

Adele follows with eight nods, including seven for her “Hello.”

Beyoncé’s “Formation” received nominations in six categories, including the award show’s biggest prize, for video of the year. 

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The video for the album’s brazen lead single, in which Beyoncé celebrates her heritage, brags about her prowess and alludes to racial injustice, will compete against Drake’s “Hotline Bling,” Adele’s behemoth comeback ballad “Hello,” Justin Bieber’s “Sorry” and Kanye West’s controversial “Famous.”

“Formation” is also up for pop video, direction, cinematography and choreography — while other selections from the album received nominations elsewhere. 

The visual for “Hold Up,” where the singer revels in her rage and uses a baseball bat to vent against a straying lover by bashing cars and property, is nominated for female video and art direction. Beyoncé’s clip for “Sorry” competes against “Formation” in choreography while the Kendrick Lamar-assisted “Freedom” is up for collaboration. 

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“Lemonade,” which premiered on HBO in April and preceded the release of the album, also leads the race for breakthrough long-form video, a new category this year. It’s up against extended visual offerings from Bieber, Florence and the Machine, Chris Brown and Troye Sivan. 

Earlier this month, the ambitious, experimental “Lemonade” —  it unspooled over tiny chapters, with portions of songs tied together by poetry from Somali-British writer Warsan Shire and narrated by the singer — picked up four nominations for the 68th Primetime Emmy Awards, including nods for directing and variety special.

Beyoncé last dominated the VMA stage in 2014, when her surprise self-titled visual album garnered eight nods and winning four. She also received the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award, the VMA’s lifetime achievement honor. To mark the win, she performed a condensed version of the album in a 16-minute medley.

Her 11 nods this year shatter her record from 2009, when her hit “Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)” was nominated for nine trophies. 

That year is perhaps most famous for West crashing Taylor Swift’s acceptance speech for female video, with the rapper interrupting the country star because he was incensed that Beyoncé had lost the award to Swift. Beyoncé tried to remedy the night by graciously bringing Swift to the stage when she accepted the trophy for video of the year. 

The rift between Swift and West continues seven years later.

This year, the polarizing rapper’s incendiary lyrics in “Famous” created a cultural ripple. On the song, he rapped, “I feel like me and Taylor might still have sex,” then declared that he made her famous. West maintained that Swift was in on the song’s creation; her camp denied it. She then appeared to take West to task at this year’s Grammys as she accepted the award for album of the year.

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Months later, West used a wax-like likeness of Swift in the VMA-nominated video for “Famous,” which depicts him and wife Kim Kardashian asleep in bed alongside a number of celebrities including Donald Trump, Rihanna, George W. Bush and Amber Rose — all nude. 

Kardashian then launched an assault on Swift, essentially calling her a liar in an interview with GQ and then posting videos of the pop star talking via phone to West.

In response, Swift now says that he never told her the full lyric and that she’s disappointed that the conversation was recorded and released; her team is reportedly pursuing legal options. 

Further adding to the drama of the tête-à-tête: It happened while the two were on good terms, having buried the hatchet at last year’s VMAs, with Swift presenting West the Video Vanguard Award and the rapper using his acceptance speech to apologize. 

With “Famous” up for video of the year, expect the West-Swift story line to continue. 

The 2016 “MTV Video Music Awards” will air from New York’s Madison Square Garden on Aug. 28 at 9 p.m. Eastern/Pacific time.

Fans can vote in all categories online (nominees for the socially voted song of summer will be announced at a later date).

See below for a full list of nominees:

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VIDEO OF THE YEAR

Adele – “Hello”

Beyoncé – “Formation”

Drake – “Hotline Bling”

Justin Bieber – “Sorry”

Kanye West – “Famous”                                      

FEMALE VIDEO

Adele – “Hello”

Beyoncé – “Hold Up”

Sia – “Cheap Thrills”

Ariana Grande – “Into You”

Rihanna ft. Drake – “Work” (short version)

MALE VIDEO

Drake – “Hotline Bling”

Bryson Tiller – “Don’t”

Calvin Harris featuring Rihanna – “This Is What You Came For”

Kanye West – “Famous”

The Weeknd – “Can’t Feel My Face”

COLLABORATION

Beyoncé featuring Kendrick Lamar – “Freedom”

Fifth Harmony featuring Ty Dolla Sign – “Work From Home”

Ariana Grande featuring Lil Wayne – “Let Me Love You”

Calvin Harris featuring Rihanna – “This Is What You Came For”

Rihanna featuring Drake – “Work” (short version)

HIP HOP VIDEO

Drake – “Hotline Bling”

Desiigner – “Panda”

Bryson Tiller – “Don’t”

Chance the Rapper – “Angels”

2 Chainz – “Watch Out”

POP VIDEO

Adele – “Hello”

Beyoncé – “Formation”

Justin Bieber – “Sorry”

Alessia Cara – “Wild Things”

Ariana Grande – “Into You”

ROCK VIDEO

All Time Low – “Missing You”

Coldplay – “Adventure of a Lifetime”

Fall Out Boy featuring Demi Lovato – “Irresistible”

twenty one pilots – “Heathens”

Panic! At the Disco – “Victorious”

ELECTRONIC VIDEO

Calvin Harris & Disciples – “How Deep Is Your Love”

99 Souls featuring Destiny’s Child & Brandy – “The Girl Is Mine”

Mike Posner – “I Took a Pill in Ibiza”

Afrojack – “SummerThing!”

The Chainsmokers featuring Daya – “Don’t Let Me Down”

BREAKTHROUGH LONG FORM VIDEO

Florence + The Machine – “The Odyssey”

Beyoncé – “Lemonade”

Justin Bieber – “Purpose: The Movement”

Chris Brown – “Royalty”

Troye Sivan – “Blue Neighbourhood Trilogy”

NEW ARTIST

Bryson Tiller

Desiigner

Zara Larsson

Lukas Graham

DNCE

ART DIRECTION

Beyoncé – “Hold Up”

Fergie – “M.I.L.F. $”

Drake – “Hotline Bling”

David Bowie – “Blackstar”

Adele – “Hello”

CHOREOGRAPHY

Beyoncé – “Formation”

Missy Elliott featuring Pharrell – “WTF (Where They From)”

Beyoncé – “Sorry”

FKA Twigs – “M3LL155X”

Florence + the Machine – “Delilah”

DIRECTION

Beyoncé – “Formation”

Coldplay – “Up&Up”

Adele – “Hello”

David Bowie – “Lazarus”

Tame Impala – “The Less I Know the Better”

CINEMATOGRAPHY

Beyoncé – “Formation”

Adele – “Hello”

David Bowie – “Lazarus”

Alesso – “I Wanna Know”

Ariana Grande – “Into You”

EDITING

Beyoncé – “Formation”

Adele – “Hello”

Fergie – “M.I.L.F. $”

David Bowie – “Lazarus”

Ariana Grande – “Into You”

VISUAL EFFECTS

Coldplay – “Up&Up”

FKA Twigs – “M3LL155X”

Adele – “Send My Love (To Your New Lover)”

The Weeknd – “Can’t Feel My Face”

Zayn – “Pillowtalk”

For more music news follow me on Twitter:@GerrickKennedy

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The Democratic convention united Demi Lovato, Paul Simon and Boys II Men for every generation of music lovers


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