LGBTQ+ stars are taking over the BET Awards and we're loving it

Colman Domingo and Victoria Monet and Janelle Monae are all nominated for 2024 BET Awards
Colman Domingo and Victoria Monet and Janelle Monae are all nominated for 2024 BET Awards

The nominations for this year’s BET Awards are finally here, and the list is way gayer than we expected!

On May 16, BET released the complete list of award nominees. While Drake leads the pack with nominations in seven categories and Nicki Minaj follows right behind with six, a handful of incredibly talented LGBTQ+ musicians, actors, and athletes also picked up nominations.

The BET Awards, which celebrates the work of Black entertainers, has been criticized in the past for leaving out prominent queer musicians. In 2022, Lil Nas X was snubbed by the awards show despite his popularity and critical success, prompting him to say that this was part of a “bigger problem of homophobia in the Black community,” Teen Vogue reported. BET denied Lil Nas X’s claim, pointing out that he had been nominated in the past.

But this year, the list of queer stars with a shot at taking home an award is longer than in past years.

Bisexual R&B singer-songwriter Victoria Monét is set to perform at the award show and is up for five awards. She was nominated for Album of the Year for Jaguar II, Best Female R&B/Pop Artist, Video of the Year, and Viewers Choice Award for her song “On My Mama,” and BET Her, which is awarded to Black women who have positively impacted their communities.

Ice Spice, who is openly bisexual, was nominated for Best Female Hip-Hop Artist, Best Collaboration, and Video of the Year for “Barbie World” alongside collaborators Nicki Minaj and Aqua.

Bi artist Yung Miami is up for the Best Collaboration award for her work on Lola Brooke’s “Don’t Play with It (Remix)” and Best Group for her role in the hip-hop duo City Girls.

Janelle Monáe, a nonbinary and pansexual artist, is nominated for the prestigious Video Director of the Year award. Out gay actor Colman Domingo, who played Mister in The Color Purple, is up for Best Actor. While queer star Ayo Edebiri (Bottoms, The Bear) has a shot at Best Actress. And queer sprinter Sha’Carri Richardson has a shot at the Sportswoman of the Year Award.

Other standout nominees include SZA, who is up for multiple awards for her song “Saturn” and her collaboration with Drake; Bryson Tiller, who was nominated for Best Male R&B/Pop Artist; and The Color Purple for Best Movie.

While the BET Awards are decidedly the voting academy, fans can put their fingers on the scale by voting for the Viewer’s Choice Award — an award that Monét is in the running for. Fans can vote from June 6 through June 30 through BET’s website.

You can watch the 2024 award ceremony on June 30 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on BET.