"Britney will be at the show and we'll be paying tribute to her," VMA executive producer Amy Doyle told Billboard.com, confirming speculation that has grown since a Spears promo for the show began airing.
"She was having an incredible year and she is so beloved by the MTV audience that we started to think what could we do that would be a different experience (from years past)," said Doyle, the executive vice president of Music and Talent for MTV. "Obviously everything from her choreography to her fashion to her videos will be (covered). We said 'let's challenge ourselves to do something unique'."
In addition to the Spears tribute, VMA producers are "talking about acknowledging" Winehouse, who died July 23 in London. "We had a great history with Amy," Doyle said, mentioning a performance she did for the network's "45th at Night" show in 2007. "She was very near and dear to us."
This year's VMAs will be broadcast from the Nokia Theater in Los Angeles on Aug. 28. The network hopes to announce a host in the near future and Doyle suggested that the show would continue the recent trend of bringing in newer talent as hosts. Chelsea Handler handled last year's telecast, Russell Brand the year before.