At the Road to MAMA concert held in Lagos 3 July, Alex Okosi, Senior Vice President of Viacom International Media Networks, stated that the company was keeping the identity of the 2015 MTV Africa Music Award host under wraps. ‘We have to be careful,’ he said, offering no more hints to the press gathered at the Federal Palace Hotel venue of the concert.
The announcement has now been made by MTV. Following Damon Wayans, host of the 2014 MAMA event, fellow US comedian and actor Anthony Anderson will take the reins of the 2015 show.
‘Funny, charismatic and engaging,’ commented Alex Okosi about the Two Can Play that Game actor, ‘Anthony Anderson is guaranteed to make MAMA 2015 a memorable event thanks to his unique comedic presence and boundless energy.’
Viewers will hope Okosi is right considering the generally well received turn by Damon Wayans last year. Moreover, it has become a tradition, if irregular, to have an artist from the west compering one of the continent’s most visible showbiz events. US singers Wyclef Jean and Eve hosted the event in 2009 and 2010 respectively, while British presenter and DJ Trevor Nelson hosted in 2008. Anthony Anderson’s selection is likely to down well with viewers given his roles in US films popular on the African continent. Some of these include: Barbershop, Cradle to the Grave and the Steven Seagal vehicle Exit Wounds. Anderson is himself familiar with award ceremonies, having co-hosted the 2015 Black Entertainment Televison (BET) Award ceremony.
Said the actor: "I'm so looking forward to my first trip to Durban and KwaZulu-Natal and honoured to be hosting MAMA 2015 on Nelson Mandela’s birthday – it’s going to be awesome!"
The 2015 MAMA ceremony takes place 18 July in Durban, South Africa, and will be broadcast live across the continent on the DSTV platform.