Missy Elliot has become the first female rapper to receive the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award.
Elliott became the latest artist to receive the award at the 2019 MTV Video Music Awards (VMA).
Not only did Elliott receive the honour, she also performed on the VMA stage for the first time in 16 years.
Elliot also became the first female rapper inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame earlier this year.
The 48-year-old rapper has sold over 30 million albums worldwide.
“Missy’s impact on the music landscape is indelible,” said Bruce Gillmer, of MTV International and Viacom music, in a statement. “Her creative vision across production, performance, and songwriting is unmatched.”
“When you watch a Missy Elliott video, you know you’re going to get standout looks,” wrote J’na Jefferson in Vibe in an article last year. The article argued she should have been recognised by MTV long ago. “She has continued to wow us with over-the-top, yet always en vogue style and make-up.”
Elliott went through a particularly successful period in the late 1990s and early 00s, with a positive and playful brand of hip-hop, blending her often humorous lyrics with razor-sharp beats, which she co-produced with her long-term collaborator Timbaland.
Jennifer Lopez was last year’s winner of the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award. Previous winners include Pink, Rihanna, and Kanye West.
According to Variety, MTV considered changing the name of the award in the wake of the “Leaving Neverland” backlash but the network has yet to do so.
It referred to the award only as the Video Vanguard Award in the latest video teaser for the VMAs.
The VMAs aired on 26 August.