Emma Watson wins first gender-neutral best actor prize at the MTV Movie & TV Awards

Emma Watson on Sunday won the first gender-neutral award for best actor at the MTV Movie & TV Awards. She bagged the Best Big-Screen Actor Award for her role as Belle in Beauty & The Beast. Watson pipped Hollywood stars James McAvoy and Hugh Jackman to win the award.

“The first acting award…that doesn’t separate nominees based on their sex says something about how we perceive the human experience…This is very meaningful to me,” she said.

Beauty & The Beast also won the Movie of the Year Award, for which Get Out, Logan and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story had also been nominated. “Thank you to the audience who embraced this movie so much, but especially to the women because women are proving that they are a huge and powerful audience, and that’s going to change the movie business,” said Director Bill Condon.

Among the other winners of the night were actors Hugh Jackman and Dafne Keen, who won in the Best Duo category for Logan. Jharrel Jerome and Ashton Sanders won for Best Kiss (Moonlight).

The Fast And The Furious franchise won the Generation Award. “I got to thank a generation that was willing to accept this multicultural franchise where it didn’t matter what colour your skin was or what country you were from. When you’re family, you’re family,” said actor Vin Diesel, one of the stars of the movie series.

In the TV category, Millie Bobby Brown bagged the Best Actor Award for her character Eleven in Netflix original Stranger Things. She was pitted against Emilia Clarke of Game of Thrones and Jeffrey Dean Morgan in The Walking Dead. Stranger Things also won the first MTV award for Best Small-Screen Show.

Trevor Noah, who won the Best Host Award for his The Daily Show, thanked United States President Donald Trump for providing the “comedy” and congratulated France for making “the right decision”. He was referring to Centrist leader Emmanuel Macron’s victory in the French presidential elections.

MTV had announced the nominations in April. With these gender-neutral categories, MTV went against the tradition of major award ceremonies, such as the Oscars and Emmys, which still feature separate categories for men and women. However, the Grammy Awards had scrapped separate gender-based categories in 2011, according to the BBC.

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