Rapper 50 Cent leads the finalists for the 2003 Billboard Awards, which will be presented Dec. 10 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. The Shady/Aftermath/Interscope artist is a contender in si

Rapper 50 Cent leads the finalists for the 2003 Billboard Awards, which will be presented Dec. 10 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. The Shady/Aftermath/Interscope artist is a contender in six categories, including artist of the year, album of the year ("Get Rich or Die Tryin'"), R&B/Hip-Hop artist of the year and Hot 100 single of the year ("In Da Club").

R&B stars R. Kelly and Beyoncé are each finalists in five categories, while Sean Paul and the Dixie Chicks are contenders in four.

Jive's Kelly is up for artist of the year, R&B/Hip-Hop artist of the year, Hot 100 male artist of the year, Hot 100 producer of the year and Hot 100 single of the year ("Ignition"). Columbia's Beyoncé is a finalist in the new artist of the year, R&B/Hip-Hop new artist of the year, Hot 100 female artist of the year and Hot 100 single of the year ("Crazy in Love" featuring Jay-Z) categories.

"Crazy in Love" also finds Beyoncé and Jay-Z as finalists in a new category: digital track of the year. Other finalists are Black Eyed Peas ("Where Is the Love?"), Coldplay ("Clocks") and OutKast ("Hey Ya!").

VP/Atlantic dancehall star Sean Paul will contend for awards in the artist of the year, rap artist of the year, Hot 100 male artist of the year and Hot 100 single of the year ("Get Busy") categories. Monument/Columbia trio the Dixie Chicks are up for duo/group artist of the year, country artist of the year, Hot 100 duo/group artist of the year and album of the year ("Home").

Other multiple-category finalists include Chingy, Justin Timberlake and 3 Doors Down (three each) and matchbox twenty, Norah Jones, Shania twain, Aaliyah, Floetry, Linkin Park and Audioslave (two each).

The awards show will be broadcast live on Fox at 8 p.m. ET (tape-delayed on the West Coast). The winners reflect the weekly charts published by Billboard from December 2002 and November 2003.