Rihanna will be this year’s recipient of the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award at the 2016 MTV Video Music Awards. The Barbadian pop star is also nominated for four Moonmen at this year’s ceremony with two nods each for “Work” featuring Drake and Calvin Harris’ “This Is What You Came For.”
Fresh off the release of her eighth album Anti, Rihanna follows Kanye West as the recipient of the special award. Past winners have included Jackson, Madonna, Peter Gabriel, Guns N’ Roses, Beastie Boys, Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake and Beyoncé. Over the course of the last decade, Rihanna has been nominated over 30 times at the award show and has won three times, including two Video of the Year awards for 2007’s “Umbrella” and 2012’s “We Found Love” with Calvin Harris.
In previous years, the winners of the Video Vanguard Award have performed following the presentation of their trophy — though last year Kanye West used his time on stage for an extended speech where he announced a presidential run in 2020. Rihanna has been touring Anti across Europe this summer and will wrap the current leg in England a week before the VMAs take place at New York City’s Madison Square Garden. In September, she’ll headline both Philadelphia’s Made in America Festival and New York City’s Global Citizen Festival.
Rihanna appears to be re-entering the acting world following her most recent LP, with several roles announced in upcoming feature films and TV shows. In 2017, she’ll appear in the show Bates Motel in a reboot of Janet Leigh’s iconic role Marion Crane as well as Luc Besson’s sci-fi film Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets. On Wednesday, she was a confirmed member of the all-female Ocean’s 11 reboot Ocean’s 8.