The 2021 BET Awards nominations have been announced, and Megan Thee Stallion and DaBaby are poised to be the stars of the night with seven nominations each. The show will air live on June 27 from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles.

Megan Thee Stallion’s career is definitely on an upward trajectory after she bagged three Grammys earlier this year. She will be vying for Best Female Hip-Hop Artist, Album of the Year for “Good News,” and video of the year for “WAP,” her monster hit with Cardi B. She is also a double nominee for the viewer’s choice award and best collaboration.

Four of DaBaby’s nominations are for best collaboration. They include: “Rockstar” with Roddy Ricch; “For the Night” with Pop Smoke and Lil Baby; “Cry Baby” with Megan Thee Stallion; and “What’s Poppin” with Lil Wayne, Tory Lanez, and Jack Harlow. He’s been given the nod for best male hip-hop artist, the viewer’s choice award, and album of the year for “Blame It on Baby.”

“WAP,” which became a fan favorite and inspired a viral TikTok dance challenge, has earned three nominations, including video of the year. Cardi B is also among the nominees, and she, as well as Drake, are the second most nominated. They have five nominations each. Coming in third with four nominations is Chris Brown, Chloe x Halle, Bruno Mars, and Anderson .Paak. All of them are competing for video of the year.

The Weeknd is up for Album of the Year and Best Male Pop/R&B Artist, and late rapper Pop Smoke, who was honored at the Billboard Music Awards with five awards recently, has also picked up two nominations at the BET Awards, including best male hip-hop artist.

Other competitors in that category include J. Cole, Drake, Lil Baby, DaBaby, and Jack Harlow.
Nicki Minaj has been left out of contention for best female hip-hop artist with “Trollz,” her collaboration with 6ix9ine. She won the title for seven consecutive years between 2010 to 2016. Other nominees in that category include Cardi B, Doja Cat, Saweetie, Latto, and Coi Leray.

Last year Megan Thee Stallion and DaBaby were the top winners at the award show. The focus last year remained largely on black rights and equality as well as the Black Lives Matter Movement. This was understandably so following the outrage and outpouring of emotion following the death of George Floyd and others at the hands of police. The BET Awards was the first of its kind for the year since the onslaught of the pandemic on the entertainment industry. The organizers of the show this year are using it as a platform to promote vaccinations. They have revealed that those who are vaccinated can register to be part of the live audience.

In an effort to maintain the health protocols, there will be limited press at the show. However, they still hope to have a red carpet event before the show kicks off.

“We are back and excited to bring culture’s biggest night … safely back to Los Angeles to celebrate this year’s incredible roster of nominees,” Connie Orlando, BET’s executive vice president of specials, music programming, and music strategy, said in a statement Thursday.

She added: “We broke ground as one of the first official award shows to move forward during the global pandemic and we are ready to take our pioneer status to the next level with the return of an audience to celebrate the best and brightest creative minds in the entertainment industry.”

The late actor Chadwick Boseman is nominated for best actor along with recent Oscar winner Daniel Kaluuya, Eddie Murphy, LaKeith Stanfield, Aldis Hodge, and Damson Idris. The best movie nominees went to “Coming 2 America,” “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom,” “The United States vs. Billie Holiday,” “Judas and the Black Messiah,” “Soul,” and “One Night in Miami.”

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