Michael Jackson was the star of the show at the fifth annual MTV Video Music Awards Japan on May 27 — even though he didn’t sing a note.
The reclusive superstar, making his first public appearance since his child molestation trial last year, was on hand at Tokyo’s Yoyogi National Stadium to receive the “Legend Award” from MTV Japan.
“I’m honored to be in Japan again and I’m very happy to be among the Japanese people because I love them very much. Thank you for your loyalty,” Jackson said.
Jackson stole the limelight somewhat from the evening’s big winner, Avex-signed singer vocalist Kumi Koda, who went home with three awards: best female video and best video of the year for “Butterfly,” as well as the “best buzzAsia from Japan” award for the video to “Trust You.”
Defstar Records vocalist Ken Hirai won in the best male video category, while the best rock video prize went to Green Da for “Boulevard of Broken Dreams” (Warner Music Japan).
The show also feature live performances by Koda, Japanese-American rap duo Def Tech, Kelly Rowland and Rihanna, and duet between John Legend and Hirai.
Winners were chosen by MTV viewers between January and May 2006. Any Japanese or international artist who released a CD in Japan between March 1, 2005, and Feb. 28, 2006, and also produced a music video was eligible to be nominated.
The show will be broadcast on MTV Japan at various times over the next couple of weeks, while portions of the show will be available to MTV channels around the world.