Celebrity

Comedian Leslie Jones to host 2017 BET Awards

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BET Africa, part of Viacom’s African multimedia portfolio, today revealed comedian and actress Leslie Jones as the host of the 2017 BET Awards which will broadcast across Africa on BET (DStv channel 129) on Tuesday, 27 June at 20:00.

For her first major award show gig, Leslie joins a long line of stand-up comedians that have rocked the role, including Chris Rock, Mo’Nique, Kevin Hart and Chris Tucker. This year’s broadcast marks 17 years of unexpected performances, trailblazing moments, super dope talent, and entertainment’s most provocative players. The iconic show continues to be a cultural rule breaker steeped in reinvention with some of the most memorable moments in Award show history. The 2017 BET Awards has set the standard for one of the most intently unconventional, news-provoking broadcasts.

A staple on the Saturday Night Live writing team, Leslie Jones gained on-camera popularity after a memorable performance during the show’s “Weekend Update” segment where she played herself. Now in her third year on the cast, Jones is known to be a talented and fiercely independent performer whose brash and unapologetic riffs can ruffle feathers. Leslie starred in Paul Feig’s reboot of Ghostbusters, with other film credits that include Chris Rock’s Top Five, Judd Apatow’s Trainwreck, the animated film Sing and the upcoming Masterminds.

“I am so excited to be hosting The BET Awards this year,” said Saturday Night Live star Leslie Jones, “BET was the first network and place where I was on TV – I am looking to turn this whole experience into a joyful homecoming.”

This year’s awards are dominated by multi-award winning singer Beyoncé who’s nominated for a total of seven including ‘Best Female R&B/Pop Artist,’ ‘Best Collaboration’ with Kendrick Lamar for “Freedom,” ‘Video of the Year,’ and ‘Album of the Year’ for Lemonade.  Close on her heels is Bruno Mars with five nods including ‘Album of the Year,’ ‘Best Male R&B/Pop Artist,’ and ‘Video of the Year’ for “24K Magic.”  Other nominees include Solange, nominated for four awards and who is up against sister Beyoncé for ‘Best Female R&B/Pop Artist.’ Chance the Rapper and Migos receive four nominations as well, Chance the Rapper nominated for ‘Best Male Hip-Hop Artist’ and ‘Best New Artist’ and Migos for ‘Best Group’ and ‘Best Collaboration’ for their #1 hit “Bad and Boujee” with Lil Uzi Vert.

In the Best International Act: Africa 2017 eight leading African artists who are blazing up the African music scene have been nominated including South African musicians such as hip-hop chart topping don, AKA, rising star, Nasty C and the inimitable dance and house music sensation, Babes Wodumo. Nigeria enjoys a strong representation with Wizkid who is no stranger to the awards, the infinitely talented Tekno, enterprising singer Mr Eazi, singer and producer Davido and one of the leading reggae and dancehall artists, Stonebwoy from Ghana.

BET Networks recognizes artists, entertainers, and athletes across over 19 categories with the 2017 “BET Awards” nominations. The nominations are selected by BET’s Voting Academy, which is comprised of fans and an esteemed group of entertainment professionals in the fields of television, film, music, social media, digital marketing, sports journalism, public relations, and the creative arts.

Russian Bear is the official South African broadcast sponsor for the BET Awards 2017.

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