Posted by | Ray Cornelius

The BET Networks held its annual press conference yesterday for the 2012 BET Awards and was hosted by the network’s President of Music Programming and Specials Stephen Hill.

Hill along with a few music industry newcomers like Big Sean, Melanie Fiona, X Factor’s Astro and others announced the nominees for this year. Hip-hop star Kanye West leads with seven nods, Beyoncé garnered six and Jay-Z has five. Confirmed performers so far include Chris Brown and Nicki Minaj.

The show will also honor the musical legacy of Frankie Beverly & Maze with the first ever Cadillac Lifetime Achievement Award. Viewers can also expect a Whitney Houston tribute as well.

Hill also mentioned this year’s show will be a “well rounded, multi-screen” event including an “Oops I Forgot” camera to capture backstage-off camera mentions. There will also be a BET Awards app for android and iPhone users complete with artist profiles, music and other fun interactive treats.

The show’s theme is “Too big to be missed” and is hosted by television and film actor Samuel L. Jackson. Jackson who appeared at the conference on pre-recorded video message was recently named by The Guinness Book of World of Records as the “Top Box Office Draw of All Time.”

The 2012 BET Awards will take place on Sunday, July 1 at 8pm at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, CA.

Click here for a full list of this year’s nominees.

Sources: and