Personally, I think this is a genius step on MTV's part. And, obviously, they haven't made too many genius decisions in a long time so I am not just saying that lightly.
NEW YORK — MTV is staking its brand on a lesser-known one: Russell Brand.
The British actor and comedian will host this year's Video Music Awards, set to air live from Paramount Pictures Studios in Los Angeles on Sept. 7, MTV told The Associated Press on Thursday.
Brand recently co-starred in the Judd Apatow-produced comedy "Forgetting Sarah Marshall" and the Reese Witherspoon-produced fairy tale "Penelope." He is currently filming the Adam Sandler comedy "Bedtime Stories," slated for release later this year.
Brand told the AP that he hadn't started thinking about how he would approach the assignment _ not that there's much planning to be done for the infamously anything-goes show.
"I've just been invited to do it," Brand said in a telephone interview from London. "It'll be good to preside over what is sure to be only vaguely coordinated televised insanity."
Not that chaos or improv a problem for the 33-year-old comedian.
"That's how I've made my name in this country: Flying very much by the seat _ and the crotch _ of my pants."
MTV hired Brand to be a VJ on its Britain-based show "Dance Floor Chart" after catching his comedy act in Edinburgh, Scotland. He also hosted a call-in show called MTV Select.
Why genius? Maybe I'm being hyperbolic, but I really am impressed by MTV actually taking a chance and having someone virtually unknown on this side of the pond hosting the VMA's. Who is an actual host and knows how to, you know, host. As opposed to, well, the typical egomaniacal, deplorable, half-witted tabloid celebrity. Let's face it, MTV barely takes any risks and so this is a refreshing surprise. Of course I, with my Anglophilia and obsession with all things British, am just about one of only like 100 Americans who knows who Russell Brand is. He's just a crazy man with crazy hair from England and he's sure to make the night fun. I might actually watch just because of him. So good job MTV! I'm proud of you for taking a risk! And for actually knowing who this guy is, I mean damn. And I thought your (MTV's) head was up your ass all along! Good to see it come out finally! And also, I haven't mentioned this, I laud you (MTV) for creating the show FNMTV. It is a very noble and admirable effort to inject music back into MTV, and although it is still a bit awkward, it has a lot of potential. And I love that it plays bands like Vampire Weekend, Slipknot, and the Jonas Brothers all together. That is awesome.
Keep up the good work MTV. (Please!)