Franz Ferdinand only British winners at MTV awards

Scottish rockers Franz Ferdinand were Britain's only success story at the MTV Music Awards on Sunday night, as their single "Take Me Out" clinched them the best breakthrough video prize.

Scottish rockers Franz Ferdinand were Britain's only success story at the MTV Music Awards on Sunday night, as their single "Take Me Out" clinched them the best breakthrough video prize.

The band, recently nominated for the Mercury Music Prize, came out on top over the likes of the White Stripes, Kanye West and New Found Glory.

But while Franz Ferdinand celebrated, flamboyant British glam-rockers The Darkness were left to ponder what might have been. They left the Miami ceremony empty-handed, despite being nominated for best new artist and best rock video awards for their hit single "I Believe In a Thing Called Love".

The main stars were all-American hip-hop duo OutKast and rapper Jay-Z, who landed four awards each. The pair won best video and best hip-hop video for dance-floor-filler "Hey Ya!" and also picked up prizes for special effects and editing.

Gritty rapper Jay-Z came away with awards for his video, "99 Problems", a hard-hitting black and white clip depicting the artist's killing. "I felt like I was trying to push the envelope," he said as he accepted the award for best rap video in sunglasses and a straw hat. He scooped best video, best hip-hop video, best special effects and best art direction.

But even as top celebrities gathered for their annual dose of MTV glitz and glamour, politics was not far from the surface.

While several stars sported P Diddy's "Vote or Die" T-shirts, younger members of the warring political clans used the occasion to plug their fathers' presidential bid. The Bush twins and John Kerry's daughters all made appearances to urge viewers to cast their vote in the imminent elections.

The evening's other big winners included pop group No Doubt, rap group The Black Eyed Peas and Usher. The R'n'B singer treated the audience to the evening's most gratuitous display of flesh in an otherwise unusually toned-down ceremony, which seemed a far-cry from last year's shock open-mouthed Madonna and Britney kiss.

The memory of the Superbowl, at which the MTV-choreographed Janet Jackson routine sparked a bare nipple furore, may have made organisers ensure a family-orientated show.

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