MTV Is Relaunching TRL, Making VMA “Moonman” Gender Neutral

NEW YORK, NY – AUGUST 22: 2013 Moonman designed by artist KAWS on display during a press conference for the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards at the Barclays Center on August 22, 2013 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. Airing LIVE from Barclays Center on Sunday, August 25, at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT this year’s “Video Music Awards” will mark the 30th anniversary of the show and become the first major annual award show to take place in the borough of Brooklyn. (Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images for MTV)

MTV Is Relaunching TRL, Making VMA “Moonman” Gender Neutral

NEW YORK, NY – AUGUST 22: 2013 Moonman designed by artist KAWS on display during a press conference for the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards at the Barclays Center on August 22, 2013 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. Airing LIVE from Barclays Center on Sunday, August 25, at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT this year’s “Video Music Awards” will mark the 30th anniversary of the show and become the first major annual award show to take place in the borough of Brooklyn. (Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images for MTV)

MTV is bringing Total Request Live back. In a new interview with The New York Times, MTV president Chris McCarthy reveals that the channel’s once-iconic music video countdown show, which originally ran from 1998 to 2008, will be relaunching in October, and a new TRL studio facing Times Square is already under construction. “If we’re going to come back and reinvent MTV, the studio is a given,” he says. “It is the centerpiece.” The new TRL will run an hour a day at first, potentially building to two to three hours a day as the show develops. Five co-hosts, including rapper and comedian DC Young Fly and Chicago radio host Erik Zachary, will be taking over for Carson Daly.

McCarthy is also developing a reality show about gender-nonconforming teens called We Are They, and he’s going all in on gender neutrality at MTV. He’s already made the acting categories in MTV’s annual Movie And TV Awards gender neutral, and soon, the Video Music Awards’ Moonman trophy will instead be called the Moon Person. “Why should it be a man?” McCarthy explains. “It could be a man, it could be a woman, it could be transgender, it could be nonconformist.”

Elsewhere in the profile, McCarthy gets in a little dig at the late, lamented longform journalism edition of MTV News: “MTV at its best — whether it’s news, whether it’s a show, whether it’s a docu-series — is about amplifying young people’s voices. We put young people on the screen, and we let the world hear their voices. We shouldn’t be writing 6000-word articles on telling people how to feel.”

    more from News