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'Worthless' MTV awards a marketing gimmick, says Fanning

RTE DJ Dave Fanning has hit out at this weekend's MTV EMAs in Belfast, describing them as "worthless."

And the veteran music expert has revealed how he isn't the least bit bothered that no home-grown acts like chart-toppers U2 or The Script will be at tomorrow night's event -- as it was "all for marketing".

Eyebrows were raised that despite the glitzy bash being held in the Belfast Odyssey, the only Irish act performing on stage will be Derry rockers Snow Patrol.

But DJ Dave said that wasn't an important factor in his eyes as the awards had little credibility anyway. He said he wasn't surprised that U2 weren't going to be there as they weren't up for nomination.

"I really do think awards are worthless. If someone wants to give me an award for being the Best Radio DJ, then fine. But if you start taking yourself seriously with things like this, you're in big trouble," he said.

"I won't be losing any sleep over any of this. There are far too many award ceremonies for my liking anyway. This is a time when televised award ceremonies wield such power as everyone watches them. But for me, it's an exercise in sales. I always get a laugh out of it."

He added how the awards show will "probably be shown on rotation 400 times as well" and will be spending the weekend "quite happily" hosting the Kerry Film Festival.

Meanwhile, Belfast is bracing itself for a host of big-name celebrities to arrive into the city with stars like Lady Gaga, Katy Perry, Justin Bieber, Bruno Mars, Adele gearing up to take to the stage.

Belfast beat off stiff competition from global contenders to win the rights to stage the showbiz bash, now in its 18th year, which is worth an estimated €10m to the local economy.

For the first time ever, the event will be staged from three locations -- the Odyssey, Belfast's City Hall and the Ulster Hall and will be broadcast to a viewing audience of 1.2bn people, reaching 640 million homes.

Wacky crooner Lady Gaga leads the pack of EMA nominees with six nods, with Katy Perry and Bruno Mars following closely behind with four nominations.

British singer Adele, Justin Bieber and Thirty Seconds To Mars are each up for three awards. Other EMA nominees include Foo Fighters, Snoop Dogg, My Chemical Romance, Jennifer Lopez and Beyonce. British rockers Queen will receive the Global Icon award and give a special performance to mark their 40th anniversary.