Timberlake, Gaga, Kanye Set to Rock the MTV VMAs | NBC 10 Philadelphia

Timberlake, Gaga, Kanye Set to Rock the MTV VMAs

Kicking off Sunday's ceremony will be a performance by Lady Gaga, her first since a hip surgery forced the cancellation of the remainder of her "Born This Way Ball" tour in February

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It's surely a contender for the least-uptight awards show currently on the television landscape, and this year's MTV Video Music Awards looks set to delight and raise eyebrows in equal measures.

Kicking off Sunday's ceremony will be a performance by Lady Gaga, her first since a hip surgery forced the cancellation of the remainder of her "Born This Way Ball" tour in February. Unless you've been living under a rock for the past five years, Mother Monster's choice of attire for the VMAs is always reason enough to tune in. 2010's meat dress, anyone? 

Proud new papa Kanye West will hit the stage for his seventh VMA stint, tying him with Madonna for the most performances by an artist at the annual awards show. West will perform his single "BL--- S---N HEAD" off of his latest album "Yeezus." If his recent public appearances are any indication, West may just be on his best behavior thanks to his new-found happiness with girlfriend Kim Kardashian and their daughter North.

In other words, if Taylor Swift wins on the night she need not worry about West crashing her acceptance speech again.

Other artists slated to perform include Justin Timberlake, Bruno Mars, Robin Thicke, Pharrell, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Miley Cyrus, Katy Perry and Drake.

Though the VMA performances and red carpet appearances have garnered the most attention in past years, those shiny Moonman statuettes are still the reason for the annual pop culture fest, which celebrates its 30th anniversary in a new location: Brooklyn's Barclays Center.

For this year only VMA winners will take home a redesigned Moonman, created specially to commemorate the 2013 Brooklyn venue.

In place of the regular shiny astronaut (based on the image of helmeted astronaut Buzz Aldrin planting the flag on the lunar landscape), the updated version will be a figure that takes design cues from Companion, the big-eared, X-eyed creature designed by the Brooklyn artist KAWS (real name Brian Donnelly).

MTV Executive Dishes on VMAs 2013 Award Show

[NATL] MTV Executive Dishes on VMAs 2013 Award Show
MTV's executive producer, Dave Sirulnick, chats about what fans can expect to see at the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards this Sunday, Aug. 25, 2013. He discusses the Moonman design in the venue and how it came to be. Plus, he is talks about Lady Gaga opening for the award show. (Published Friday, Aug. 23, 2013)

Timberlake and Macklemore lead the nominations with six apiece. Their place atop the heap is fitting when you take into account they've got the year's best-selling album ("The 20/20 Experience") and single ("Thrift Shop"), respectively.

Bruno Mars is a close third with four nominations, ahead of Pink, Miley Cyrus, Robin Thicke and Thirty Seconds To Mars, who each picked up three nods.

Check out the full list of MTV VMA nominations

Timberlake's "Mirrors" clip earned nominations for Video of the Year, Best Pop Video, Best Male Video and Best Editing. His "Suit & Tie" team-up with Jay Z is in the running for Best Direction and Best Collaboration. Timberlake will also receive the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award during the ceremony in recognition of his career output.

If that weren't enough, the "SexyBack" singer is performing live and if the rumors are true, will also reunite with his former 'NSync bandmates (Joey Fatone, J.C. Chasez, Lance Bass and Chris Kirkpatrick) for a one-off reunion.

Along with Timberlake's "Mirrors," Macklemore & Ryan Lewis' "Thrift Shop" and Mars' "Locked Out of Heaven" will battle Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines" and Taylor Swift's "I Knew You Were Trouble" for Video of the Year.

Macklemore & Ryan Lewis' "Can't Hold Us" will duke it out for Best Hip Hop Video with Drakes' "Started From The Bottom," Kendrick Lamar's "Swimming Pools," J. Cole's "Power Trip" and "F--kin' Problems" from A$AP Rocky feat. Drake, 2 Chainz and Kendrick Lamar.

A new category has been added to the rundown in 2013: Song of the Summer. Vying for the prize are Cyrus with "We Can't Stop," Daft Punk's "Get Lucky," "I Need Your Love" by Calvin Harris and Thicke's "Blurred Lines."

The 2013 MTV Video Music Awards airs live from 9 pm ET Sunday, Aug. 25 on MTV.