NEW YORK (AP) _ An executive producer for the Black Entertainment TV Awards says Sunday night's live broadcast from Los Angeles will honor Michael Jackson.
Stephen Hill said the show will be dedicated to Jackson because of his influence on music and pop culture. Jackson, 50, died Thursday at UCLA Medical Center after being stricken at his Los Angeles home.
“This will be a show heavy on Michael Jackson's memory. I think what you're going to find is that acceptance speeches for awards will have nothing to do about the artists themselves, but about the influence that Michael Jackson had on them,'' Hill said Thursday in a phone interview from Los Angeles.
“A show like this takes a good six months to put together, so when something happens three days before, it's going to be done fueled by emotions,'' he said.
Hill said many of the celebrities who will appear on the show _ including Beyonce, Wyclef Jean, Maxwell and Ne-Yo _ contacted BET to see how they could help prepare a tribute.
“Within minutes after its happening, we had calls from different artists _ all asking what can they do'' and how could they pay tribute to Jackson, he said.
The 2009 BET Awards, which honor African-American achievements in music, film and sports, will air from the Shrine Auditorium. Jamie Foxx will be the host of the show.
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