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Published: Tuesday, 6/3/2008

MTV Movie Awards: 'Transformers,' Depp among night's winners

BY DERRIK J. LANG
ASSOCIATED PRESS

UNIVERSAL CITY, Calif. - The Transformers have another chunk of metal to add to their collection.

The blockbuster about robots in disguise took home the golden popcorn trophy for best film at the MTV Movie Awards on Sunday night, and Johnny Depp won two buckets for best comedic performance and best villain.

Accepting the best film award with director Michael Bay, Transformers co-star Megan Fox trotted out some R-rated language to describe how good the film's sequel is going to be. Bay said the film would begin shooting the following day and take place two years after the first film.

And Rainn Wilson - who presented best kiss wearing nothing but a teddy bear - said on the gold carpet that he would play a college professor in Transformers 2.

"I just love the idea of me being in a giant Michael Bay movie," Wilson said.

A couple of hundred yards downhill, the final remnants of a disastrous fire that ripped through Universal Studios was extinguished as the ceremony got under way.

While there was no mention of the fire, there was definitely smoke during the over-the-top ceremony: Presenters Seth Rogen and James Franco, stars of the upcoming stoner comedy Pineapple Express, pretended to smoke marijuana before handing out the popcorn trophy for new category of best summer movie so far.

"Kids, don't really smoke fake weed like this," Rogen sarcastically told the crowd at the Gibson Amphitheatre.

As they pulled out the "contraband," the cameras pulled away to a wide angle, staying that way until Rogen and Franco left the stage. The awkward moment made some in the audience laugh, but left Robert Downey, Jr. - who accepted the award on behalf of Iron Man - with a puzzled look.

"Thanks fellas," he said, "for that intoxicating introduction."

Franco said later that MTV put them up to the joke, but that someone from the network decided at the last minute that they couldn't go through with it. By then, it was too late to pull back.

"MTV wrote it! ... Then backstage there was this big commotion: 'You guys can't say that,'" Franco said. "It says right in the script: 'Lights fake joint.' "

The nearby studio fire broke out about 4:30 a.m. on a soundstage featuring New York brownstone facades at the 400-acre property. It was contained to the lot but burned for more than 12 hours before the final flames were extinguished.

"I came here early because I wanted to see it," Chris Brown said before the show. What did he see? "A whole lot of chaos."

Winners were threatened to keep their speeches short by a man resembling Javier Bardem's character from No Country for Old Men - complete with the bob hairdo and pneumatic cattle gun. Best female performance winner Ellen Page from Juno escaped unscathed, but best fight winners Sean Faris and Cam Gigandet were ushered off stage by the menacing lookalike.

Host Mike Myers and Dana Carvey resurrected their Saturday Night Live characters Wayne Campbell and Garth Algar, the cable access hosts of Wayne's World. They acknowledged it's been awhile since they've been together ("1994. That's a while," said Wayne) and presented a risque Top 10 list of adult film titles (No. 8: I Am Legend ... In Bed; and No. 1 Iron Man).

The mood backstage was calm as stars schmoozed during the show. Tom Cruise posed for photos with his arm around Ben Stiller while wife Katie Holmes stood a few steps away. She wasn't by herself for long: Sarah Jessica Parker chatted Holmes up, and Sandler and Will Smith both had their children with them behind the scenes.

Depp showed up to accept his trophies for best comedic performance for Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End and best villain for Sweeney Todd.

Depp kept his first acceptance speech short. "You can ask anybody," he said quietly. "I'm not a very funny person. I'm not even remotely funny."

Cruise presented Adam Sandler with the Generation Award, the MTV Movie Awards' highest honor, for his various comedic and "stupid" performances over the years. Sandler sang a live version of "Nobody Does It Better" alongside a bevy of backup dancers clad in skintight gold outfits. Among them: Rob Schneider.

Sandler, who took a guitar solo on his gold Les Paul, changed the lyrics to "baby, I'm the best."

"That was probably the most arrogant thing I've ever done," Sandler said, moments after Cruise got on his knees to hand over the golden popcorn.

Coldplay performed "Viva la Vida" amid a flurry of confetti, which at one point found its way in lead singer Chris Martin's mouth. Later, the Pussycat Dolls danced in front of a giant lit-up sign broadcasting the group's name alongside "America's Best Dance Crew" winners JabbaWockeeZ to "When I Grow Up."

Other winners during the ceremony included Smith for best male performance for I Am Legend; Zac Efron for best breakthrough performance for Hairspray; and Briana Evigan and Robert Hoffman for best kiss in Step Up 2: The Streets.



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