Childish Gambino’s This Is America arrived in the world with a bang in May this year, almost instantly racking up millions of views and sparking countless think pieces (you can read CR’s one, by Rob Turner, here). It’s unusual that a music video can prompt such a cultural moment nowadays so it is only right that the video is now beginning what will likely be a round of award wins by picking up the top prize at the respected UK Music Video Awards.
Other success stories of the ceremony (which took place last night at London’s Roundhouse) include Florence + The Machine and Sevdaliza, who picked up multiple awards. Director Autumn de Wilde collected the awards for Best UK Rock Video and Best Choreography in a Video for Florence + the Machine’s Big God, while Sevdaliza’s Shahmaran, an epic tale of desire and oppression, was honoured in the Best Visual Effects category as well as winning the Best UK Alternative Video award for Ghanaian director Emmanuel Adjei.
This year’s Best Director award went to Barcelona-based directing collective, CANADA, for their work over the past 12 months, primarily with critically-acclaimed Spanish artist, Rosalía. The video for her single Malamente also won the collective the Best International Pop Video award.
The Best Artist award went to Young Fathers for their body of music video work in the past year, including the videos In My View, Toy and Holy Ghost, the latter made with last year’s Best Director winner, Oscar Hudson.
alt-J continued their run of success at the UKMVAs with another win, this time for the video Pleader in the Best Alternative UK Video category, accepted via video message by the LA-based director Isaiah Seret.
It was also a case of second year running for Dua Lipa and director Henry Scholfield who triumphed once again in the UK Pop category, this time with IDGAF. Jon Hopkins was rewarded for his double nomination in the Best UK Dance Video category with a win for Singularity, directed by Seb Edwards.
In the craft categories, production designer Francesca di Mottola was recognised for hand-crafting the noirish world of King Krule’s Biscuit Town, and Nick Royal was honoured as the lead stylist behind the futuristic cabaret environment of Years & Years’ If You’re Over Me. Animation supremo Chris Hopewell collected the award for Best Animation for Father John Misty’s Please Don’t Die.
Directing duo Zhang + Knight (Hannah Palumbo and Linden Feng), who had picked up multiple nominations, were presented with the Best New Director award. The Best Production Company award, handed out for only the second time at the UK MVAs, was won by Somesuch. The London-based production company was honoured for its outstanding output of music videos over the past year, for artists including Chaka Khan, Florence, Stormzy and King Krule. The Outstanding Achievement award went to commissioner, producer and directors’ rep, Carrie Sutton, for her work with the likes of Robbie Williams, Supergrass and Take That.