Sam Smith Is Announced as VMA Performer as MTV Is Warned to Avoid 'Explicit Sexual Content'
Sam Smith is the latest addition to the line-up of performers for the upcoming MTV Video Music Awards. The British singer, who will make his U.S. awards show performance debut, is scheduled to grace the stage at the Forum in Inglewood, California, on Sunday night, August 24.
"I have watched the VMAs every year since I was a kid. I am so insanely nervous but also so honored to be performing. This truly is a pinch yourself moment for me," Smith expressed his excitement after being announced as a performer.
Smith is also up for a couple awards at the ceremony. His "Stay With Me" is pitted against Pharrell Williams' "Happy", John Legend's "All of Me", Ed Sheeran's "Sing" and Eminem and Rihanna's "The Monster" in the Best Male Music Video category. He's also nominated for MTV Artist to Watch award alongside 5 Seconds of Summer, Charli XCX, SchoolBoy Q and Fifth Harmony.
In other VMAs-related news, the Parents Television Council recently warned MTV not to include inappropriate contents at the ceremony that will be aired live on the network. In a letter written to MTV's Janet Borelli and obtained by The Hollywood Reporter, the council's president Tim Winter recalled the controversial performance of Miley Cyrus and Robin Thicke at last year's VMAs and criticized MTV's decision to still apply a TV-14 rating to the program "despite other adult-oriented performances and advertising messages."
"Such a rating was simply unacceptable to the families who depend on the television ratings system to be applied accurately and to the millions of families whose children are marketed to by MTV. The 2013 VMAs were a public relations kerfuffle for your network that I feel certain you will not wish to repeat," the letter added.
The PTC also asked MTV to make sure this year's VMAs "will not contain the type of explicit sexual content present in last year' s show" and "will not violate MTV/Viacom's own standards and practices as was alleged last year." They also wanted the network to "commit publicly to rate the program accurately and in accordance with the TV Parental Guidelines, which stipulate that crude indecent language, explicit sexual activity, or graphic violence is to be rated as appropriate only for adults - TV-MA."
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