Samuel L. Jackson Hosts BET AWARDS 12 Tonight, 7/3

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Actor Samuel L. Jackson, declared the highest grossing movie actor of all time according to the Guinness Book of World Records, will be this year's BET AWARDS 12 host. In addition, the members of Maze featuring Frankie Beverly are the prestigious recipients of the 'Cadillac Lifetime Achievement Award;' and Chris Brown and Nicki Minaj were revealed as the first confirmed performers.

Respectfully labeled as one of the hardest working actors in Hollywood, Samuel L. Jackson is an undisputed star as demonstrated in the fact that his films have grossed the most money in box office sales than any other actor in the history of filmmaking. Currently, the Oscar-nominated actor is on screen in "The Avengers," which is part of his 9-picture deal with Marvel Studios. The film opened on May 4, 2012 to a record shattering $200 million opening weekend.

On hand from BET's NYC studios to announce the nominees for the BET AWARDS 12 were Mindless Behavior, Big Sean, Melanie Fiona, DJ Khaled, Astro, A$AP Rocky and Diggy, along with the Cadillac Lifetime Achievement Award honorees Maze featuring Frankie Beverly.

The BET AWARDS is one of the most watched award shows on cable television according to the Nielsen Company. The BET AWARDS franchise remains as the #1 program in cable TV history among African-Americans, and it is BET's #1 telecast every year. It recognizes the triumphs and successes of artists, entertainers and athletes in 20 categories. Leading the pack of A-list talent this year is Kanye West with an impressive 7 Nominations: Best Collaboration, Video Director of the Year, and 5 notable nominations for 'The Throne' with Jay-Z. 'The Throne' received nominations for Best Group, Best Collaboration ft. Otis Redding, Coca-Cola Viewer's Choice and 2 nods for Video of the Year for "N*ggas in Paris" and "Otis." Close behind is Beyonce with 6 Nominations: Best Female R&B Artist, Best Collaboration, Video Director of the Year, Coca-Cola Viewer's Choice and 2 nods for Video of the Year for "Countdown" and "Love on Top."

The nominees for the BET AWARDS 12 include:

Best Female R&B Artist
Marsha Ambrosius
Beyonce
Mary J. Blige
Melanie Fiona
Rihanna

Best Male R&B Artist
Chris Brown
Bruno Mars
Miguel
Trey Songz
Usher

Best Group
Bad Meets Evil
Diddy-Dirty Money
Maybach Music Group
Mindless Behavior
The Throne (Jay-Z & Kanye West)

Best Collaboration
Beyonce f/ J. Cole - "Party"
Big Sean f/ Kanye West & Roscoe Dash - "Marvin & Chardonnay"
DJ Khaled f/ Drake, Rick Ross & Lil Wayne - "I'm On One"
Drake f/ Lil Wayne & Tyga - "The Motto"
The Throne (Jay-Z & Kanye West) f/ Otis Redding - "Otis"
Wale f/ Miguel - "Lotus Flower Bomb"

Best Male Hip Hop Artist
Big Sean
Drake
J. Cole
Lil Wayne
Rick Ross
Young Jeezy

Best Female Hip Hop Artist
Diamond
Nicki Minaj
Brianna Perry
Trina

Video of the Year
Beyonce - "Countdown"
Beyonce - "Love On Top"
The Throne (Jay-Z & Kanye West) - "N***as in Paris"
The Throne (Jay-Z & Kanye West) f/ Otis Redding - "Otis"
Usher - "Climax"

Video Director of the Year
Beyonce & Alan Ferguson
Benny Boom
Chris Brown & Godfrey Tabarez
Kanye West
Hype Williams

Best New Artist
A$AP Rocky
Big Sean
Diggy
Future
Meek Mill

Best Gospel
Yolanda Adams
Kim Burrell
James Fortune & FIYA
Fred Hammond
Trin-I-Tee 5:7

Best Actress
Angela Bassett
Viola Davis
Taraji P. Henson
Regina King
Zoe Saldana

Best Actor
Don Cheadle
Common
Idris Elba
Kevin Hart
Denzel Washington<


YoungStars Award
Astro
Diggy
Jacob Latimore
Keke Palmer
Willow Smith

Best Movie
Good Deeds
Jumping The Broom
Laugh At My Pain
Red Tails
The Help

Subway Sportswoman of the Year
Skylar Diggins
Brittney Griner
Candace Parker
Serena Williams
Venus Williams

Subway Sportsman of the Year
Carmelo Anthony
Kobe Bryant
Victor Cruz
Kevin Durant
LeBron James

Coca-Cola Viewer's Choice Award
Beyonce - "Love On Top"
Chris Brown - "Turn Up the Music"
Drake f/ Lil Wayne & Tyga - "The Motto"
Mindless Behavior - "Hello"
The Throne (Jay-Z & Kanye West) f/ Otis Redding - "Otis"
Wale f/ Miguel - "Lotus Flower Bomb"

Centric Award
Common
Estelle
Robert Glasper
Robin Thicke
Tyrese

Best International Act: Africa
Camp Mulla (Kenya)
Ice Prince (Nigeria)
Lira (South Africa)
Mokobe (Mali)
Sarkodie (Ghana)
Wizkid (Nigeria)

Best International Act: UK
Estelle
Labrinth
Emeli Sande
Sway
Wretch 32

www.BET.com/BETAwards is the official site for the BET AWARDS 12 where fans can visit to vote for the Coca-Cola Viewer's Choice Award, get up-to-date info on this year's show and take a look back on past BET AWARDS. Join the conversation on social media by logging on to BET's multiple social media platforms: On Twitter by using hashtag: #BETAWARDS, #2BIG2MISS; and following us @BETAWARDS. On Facebook by liking the fan page at facebook.com/TheBETAwards. On Google plus at bet.us/gplusBET.

The BET AWARDS 12 will premiere tonight, July 3, 2012 at 8:00PM BST across BET's international platforms in the UK and Africa.

Respectfully labeled as one of the hardest working actors in Hollywood, Jackson is an undisputed star as demonstrated in the fact that his films have grossed the most money in box office sales than any other actor in the history of filmmaking. Jackson made an indelible mark on American cinema with his portrayal of 'Jules', the philosophizing hitman, in Quentin Tarantino's "Pulp Fiction." In addition to unanimous critical acclaim for his performance, he received Academy Award and Golden Globe nominations as Best Supporting Actor as well as a Best Supporting Actor award from the British Academy of Film and Television Arts. Jackson recently made his Broadway debut at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theater in Katori Hall's The Mountaintop, co-starring Angela Bassett and directed by Kenny Leon. The Mountaintop is set on the eve of the assassination of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr., whom Jackson portrays. The play ended its run on January 22, 2012.

Jackson is currently in production on Quentin Tarantino's "Django Unchained." Jackson plays the role of 'Stephen,' alongside Christoph Waltz as 'Dr. King Schultz,' Jamie Foxx as 'Django' and Leonardo DiCaprio as 'Calvin Candie.' "Django Unchained" is set in the Deep South during the 1850s and tells the story of a slave-turned-bounty hunter setting out to rescue his wife from a brutal Mississippi plantation owneR. Jackson is currently on screen in "The Avengers," which is part of his 9-picture deal with Marvel Studios. The highly anticipated film opened on May 4, 2012 to a record shattering $200 million opening weekend. Recently, Jackson was seen in HBO's "The Sunset Limited," an adaptation of Cormac McCarthy's play. Tommy Lee Jones co-starred and directed the telefilm. On television, in addition to "The Sunset Limited," Jackson starred in John Frankenheimer's Emmy Award-winning "Against the Wall" for HBO. His performance earned him a Cable Ace nomination as Best Supporting Actor in a Movie or Miniseries, as well as a Golden Globe nomination.

Photo Credit: Peter James Zielinski