'Avengers: Endgame' stars answer the call, reunite virtually for Nickelodeon's Kids' Choice Awards

While a number of major events have been canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic, Nickelodeon's Kids' Choice Awards charged ahead Saturday night.

The hour-long ceremony, initially scheduled for March 22, was "virtually produced" — conducted via video conferencing to accommodate social distancing — offering up a possible blueprint for other awards ceremonies as the wait for a COVID-19 vaccine continues.

The Avengers answered the call, reuniting virtually from quarantine to accept favorite movie for “Avengers: Endgame.”

Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Scarlett Johansson and Jeremy Renner assembled to thank youngsters, with Ruffalo urging them to “stay safe, stay strong.”

“We’ll get through this,” Hemsworth added.

Downey, aka Tony Stark/Iron Man, popped up last, prompting feigned surprise from his castmates. “Oh! Hi,” Johansson exclaimed. “We thought you were, uh …” Renner trailed off, hinting at the movie's big surprise, with Downey responding, “What? Social distancing? Aren’t we all?” (Crickets.)

Kids' Choice Awards: See who took home top honors in major categories

The night's first big winner was Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, who took the award for favorite movie actor. (Coincidentally, The Rock celebrated his 48th birthday Saturday.)

He was nominated for roles in two movies: "Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw" and "Jumanji: The Next Level."

"I want you to stay positive, to stay happy, to stay healthy, to go to bed feeling good tonight," Johnson told viewers while holding his award, which had been mailed to him.

Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson
Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson

Music power couple Shawn Mendes and Camila Cabello took top honors for favorite music collaboration for "Señorita." Mendes also got the win for favorite male artist.

"I love you guys and I miss you so much," Mendes said. "Not a day goes by that I don't think how incredible my fans are."

Cabello promised the two would celebrate by making some organic slime and sliming themselves later.

Ellen DeGeneres Zoomed in to accept her favorite TV host award for "Ellen's Game of Games."

"I've always felt it was the perfect show for kids," she said. "I mean, where else do you get to see adults blasted in the face with pudding?"

DeGeneres took time to offer words of encouragement to children — and their parents — who are both adjusting to these unprecedented times, including holding classes at home.

"A real teacher has got to be better than your mom in old pajamas," she kidded. "Even though this is a hard time, remember it won't last forever."

Ellen DeGeneres won the Kids' Choice Award for TV host for "Ellen's Game of Games."
Ellen DeGeneres won the Kids' Choice Award for TV host for "Ellen's Game of Games."

Voters cast online ballots in about 30 categories, including favorite music artists, family TV show as well as movie and actresses and actors from TV and film. Victoria Justice, star of Nickelodeon's "Zoey 101" and "Victorious," hosted.

Josh Gad shared the award for favorite animated movie with his "Frozen 2" castmates, joking that the Kids' Choice Awards blimp in his hands was "the closest I'm going to get to air transportation right now."

In conjunction with the show, Nickelodeon said it plans to donate $1 million to No Kid Hungry, an organization that fights childhood hunger.

Millie Bobby Brown, who nabbed the favorite TV actress award for her role on "Stranger Things," was one of many quick to praise those on the front lines who are battling hunger and fighting illness during the current pandemic.

"I cherish and admire their work and bravery more than anyone," she said.

Contributing: Kim Willis and Carly Mallenbaum, USA TODAY

We’re all in this together: Sign up for our Staying Apart, Together newsletter for the best how-to, self-help and joyful distractions

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Avengers reunite for Kids' Choice Awards during coronavirus quarantine