Stars arriving for the MTV Video Music Awards
Cast members from MTV's "Jersey Shore," from left, Ronnie Ortiz-Magro, Samantha Giancola, Vinny Guadagnino, Deena Nicole Cortese and Paul DelVecchio arrive at the MTV Video Music Awards on Thursday, Sept. 6, 2012, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)
There may be no baby bump to talk about this year, but given its track record, the MTV Video Music Awards in Los Angeles will surely provide some water cooler moments Thursday.
Last year, Beyonce set a tweets-per-second record on Twitter when she revealed her pregnancy at the awards. While that's a tough act to follow, there may be other opportunities to keep tongues wagging (and fingers typing).
Nicki Minaj, who recently caused a stir with a rhyme endorsing Republican Mitt Romney for president, has a planned collaboration with a special guest. Green Day is expected to perform despite lead singer Billie Joe Armstrong's trip to an emergency room earlier this week.
And Rihanna, who arrived with her hair in a pixie cut and in a stunning scoop-backed white dress, is set to kick off the show with A$AP Rocky. Rihanna and Drake are the show's top nominees with five apiece.
Demi Lovato took home the night's first moonman trophy, winning best video with a message for "Skyscraper" on the pre-awards show. She then performed for the crowd outside the Staples Center.
It's unclear if Drake will attend. He's pitted against Chris Brown in one category — a noteworthy competition given that earlier this summer, their entourages were involved in a bottle-throwing brawl at a New York nightclub where both were present. The fight left several people injured and sparked lawsuits.
Rihanna arrives at the MTV Video Music Awards on Thursday, Sept. 6, 2012, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP)
Brown is not scheduled to perform, but if he attends, eyes will be on a possible interaction with Rihanna. Though he once attacked his ex-girlfriend, the two have resumed their friendship, and Rihanna declared her love for Brown in an interview with Oprah Winfrey last month (however, she stressed they were not a couple).
MTV tried something new this year, unveiling a double-decker red carpet that featured two stories of stars and celebrity. Thousands of fans lined up outside the show's new home in Los Angeles.
The crowd chanted "USA! USA!" at the appearance of members of the gold medal-winning U.S. Olympic team. And heartthrobs in the boy band One Direction drew some of the loudest cheers of the day, though fans had to labor under a scorching sun with the temperature at 90 degrees.
Ne-Yo, wearing a long sleeve black shirt, camouflage pants and a black fedora, said he was feeling the heat.