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Katy Perry, Adele, Kanye West lead MTV Video Music Awards nods

Katy Perry
MTV made one thing clear when rolling out its list of nominees for the 2011 Video Music Awards: This is the year of the pop diva. And Katy Perry and Adele are sitting right at the top.

Adele might have proved she is unrivaled when it comes to her profile on the charts, but Perry’s year of churning out a host of whimsical visuals snagged her a leading nine VMA nominations, the network announced Wednesday during a live telecast.

Perry turned heads at this year’s Grammy Awards when the pop tart's largely panned “Teenage Dream” competed in the top album category, but it’s an album that spawned a host of No. 1's –- and the accompanying videos were met with equal fanfare. Always somewhat predictable when it comes to whom they choose to fete, the VMAs have remained a ceremony rewarding the song's visuals, rather than being based on chart performance or critical acclaim. Perry's rack of nods includes video of the year and female video for the hit “Firework,” pop video for “Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)” and collaboration for her Kanye West-assisted “E.T.”

Adele’s crossover smash “Rolling in the Deep” was the only clip the Brit released in support of her record-breaking “21,” but that didn’t matter. The visual for the single garnered seven nominations, which also includes the top video of the year.

Though West became a media pariah for interrupting Taylor Swift's acceptance speech at 2009’s ceremony, all is clearly forgiven for the rapper, who bested his male peers with a leading seven nominations.

After the dust-up, West has become notoriously guarded toward the media and used his performance of “Runaway” at last year’s VMAs to address the debacle on his own terms. Though he then released an ambitious short film for the track, he wasn't recorgized for it. Instead, he got nods for singles “All of the Lights” and “Power,” as well as the collaboration with Perry, which scored the duo four nods in primarily technical categories.

In a year with high-profile releases from Beyoncé, Britney Spears and Lady Gaga, all three managed to fade into the background to make room for Adele and Perry.

Beyoncé and Gaga have dominated the telecast in years past, including Gaga’s record-breaking 13 nods last year. This year, the two divas scored only three nominations each, and neither landed in the main race. The two will, however, go head to head in the female video category along with Adele, Perry and Nicki Minaj. Spears, who has the most history on the VMA stage, picked up only two nods; and Eminem -- who received nine nominations last year and took home two awards -– landed three nods for his hit “Love the Way You Lie.”

Foster the People and Odd Future's Tyler, the Creator -- both newcomers -- each landed two nods, including for new artist. Tyler’s clip for “Yonkers” rounds out the race for video of the year alongside Beastie Boys and Bruno Mars, the latter of whom is up for four Moonman statues.

Other nominees include Justin Bieber, Lil Wayne, 30 Seconds to Mars, Pitbull, Chris Brown and Cee-Lo.

The 28th annual MTV Video Music Awards will air live from the Nokia Theatre at L.A. Live on Aug. 28 at 9 p.m.

RELATED:

Adele's '21' passes 1 million digital downloads in U.S.

Nielsen SoundScan 2011 midyear report: Music sales up for a change

Essence Music Festival: An appreciative Kanye West toasts New Orleans crowd

-- Gerrick D. Kennedy

Photo: Katy Perry at the Grammy nominations concert in 2010.  Credit: Matt Sayles / Associated Press

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