Los Angeles - British boy band One Direction picked up two early awards at the MTV Video Music Awards on Thursday, crowning their arrival on the US pop scene just six months ago.
The five guys, contestants on the British version of TV singing contest The X Factor, beat Justin Bieber and Rihanna for best pop video, and they also won the most-shareworthy video award for their debut hit single What Makes You Beautiful.
“Thank you so much! We have grown up watching this show and to collect one of these straight away is incredible,” said a jubilant Niall Horan, as the band collected their silver Moonman trophies at the ceremony in Los Angeles.
One Direction also performed single One Thing to hordes of screaming girls.
R&B artist Chris Brown, sporting a gray silk suit and bleached white hair, collected the best male video award for Turn Up the Music, while Calvin Harris was the winner of the VMA's first award in the increasingly popular electronic dance music category for Feel So Close.
Rihanna, debuting a new pixie hair cut, opened the show with a high-energy medley of her hit single We Found Love and a remix of sexy number Cockiness (Love It) featuring rapper ASAP Rocky.
The R&B singer from Barbados went into the ceremony as joint top nominee with rapper Drake, with each getting five nominations. But an hour into the show, Rihanna was empty-handed.
Canadian rapper Drake won best hip-hop video for HYFR featuring Lil Wayne, which celebrates his Jewish heritage. “I want to dedicate this award to any kid who has had a long walk home,” Drake said.
Other performers included Pink and hip-hop artist Frank Ocean, with appearances still to come from country-pop singer Taylor Swift, Alicia Keys and punk rockers Green Day.
Vying for the biggest prize - video of the year - are Drake with Take Care, Gotye for Somebody That I Used to Know, Katy Perry for Wide Awake, M.I.A. for Bad Girls and Rihanna for We Found Love. - Reuters