Okay – it was more than one time, but this is one that is detailed in my book “Ms. Cheevious in Hollywood: My Zany Years Spent Working in Tinsel Town.” It was 2002.
I have some really great behind-the-scenes stories involving Jack Black, Kate Beckinsale, and many more… but again, they’re in the book… so you’d better get to reading it, if you want the juicy stuff.
Here, however, are the nitty-gritty shop details, as provided by MTV:
2002 MTV Movie Awards
Host: Jack Black & Sarah Michelle Gellar
Venue: Shrine Auditorium
City: Los Angeles, California
Date: June 1, 2002
Best Movie: The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
2002 Movie Awards Summary
In what had to be one of the most daring science experiments of the 21st Century so far, we locked Sarah Michelle Gellar in a room with Jack Black for three hours and just watched the madness unfold. And reader, it was glorious. It all started out with a Spider-Man spoof with a Star Wars twist. Are you on the edge of your seat? Stay there. Brilliant hosting aside, it was a huge night for The Lord Of The Rings: The Fellowship Of The Ring . It won Best Movie and Best Breakthrough Performance (Orlando Bloom), sweeping Josh Hartnettheart-stopper Black Hawk Down , The Fast And The Furious , Legally Blonde and horror classic Shrek under the rug.
Best Male Performance went to frequent MTV Movie Awards contributor and former host, Will Smith, for his dead-on portrayal of boxing great Muhammad Ali in, you guessed it, Ali . The champ didn’t even flinch at decidedly burly competition Russell Crowe ( A Beautiful Mind ) and Vin Diesel (The Fast And The Furious) or pretty boys Josh Hartnett ( Pearl Harbor ) and Elijah Wood (Lord Of The Rings).
Meanwhile, in the Best Female Performance category, Kate Beckinsale (Pearl Harbor), Halle Berry ( Monster’s Ball ), Angelina Jolie ( Lara Croft: Tomb Raider ) and Reese Witherspoon (Legally Blonde) fell to the red-headed fury of Moulin Rouge! star Nicole Kidman. Once you’ve been married to Tom Cruise, no challenge is too great.
And now… the bad news. In an incredibly rare MTV Movie Awards tragedy, Jim Carrey didn’t win a single award. Best Villain went to Denzel Washington for Training Day and Best Comedic Performance went to – you may wanna sit down – Reese Witherspoon for Legally Blonde. Also missing: scheduled presenter Jodie Foster. We sent two of our best men – Jack Black and Will Ferrell – to track her down, but all we got out of it was a few fart jokes and a ticket for breaking and entering. But somehow the show went on. Jason Biggs and Seann William Scott got Best Kiss for their homoerotic heat in American Pie 2 and Christopher Nolan got Best New Filmmaker for Memento , a very serious movie.
Did somebody say serious? Oh yes. It was Chris Tucker who turned his Best Fight ( Rush Hour 2 ) acceptance speech into a public service announcement about AIDS and poverty in Africa. Way to put that spotlight to good use, Chris. Also taking advantage of the spotlight, Martin Lawrence, who shamelessly plugged his new movie between awards. Also plugged: The White Stripes who all but burned the show to the ground with their medley of “Fell In Love With A Girl” and “Dead Leaves And The Dirty Ground.” Other performers included Eminem who spat “Without Me” all over the front row and Kelly Osbourne who covered Madonna’s “Papa Don’t Preach.” With that the show was over and with it came one more MTV Movie Awards miracle: Sarah Michelle Gellar made it through the night reasonably unharmed.
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