The best kiss award is always one of the most anticipated moments of the MTV Movie Awards, and these nominees-turned-winners more than validated our excitement.
Ashton Sanders and Jharrel Jerome for Moonlight, 2017
The young stars used their time onstage to share an empowering message. “But on a real note I think it is safe to say that it is okay for us young performers, especially us minority performers, to step out of the box,” said Jerome after thanking his parents. “It’s okay for us to step out of the box and do whatever it take to tell the story and whatever it takes to make the change. This award is for that, it’s for us artists who are out there, who need to do whatever it takes to get people to wake up.” Sanders added: “This award is bigger than Jharrel and I. This represents more than a kiss. This is for those who feel like the othersders, the misfits — this represents us. We love y’all and thank y’all.”
Sarah Michelle Gellar and Selma Blair for Cruel Intentions, 2000
In Cruel Intentions, Gellar and Blair earned their golden popcorn with a super-close-up make-out complete with a string of spit. “First of all I should just thank Sarah for all those hours of practice,” Blair joked during their acceptance speech. Before the pair shared a sweet peck, Gellar cheekily thanked “[writer-director] Roger Kumble and [producer] Neil Moritz for being the sick perverts that they are.”
Rebel Wilson and Adam Devine for Pitch Perfect 2, 2016
Despite first jokingly insisting they had no chemistry, Wilson and Devine went there — and then went even further — during their speech. The duo ended up rolling around on the floor as they recreated the film’s no-holds-barred romance. Devine will return to the stage this year to host the awards — we’ll see if he and Wilson make a repeat performance.
Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson for Twilight, 2009
The first time they victoriously took to the stage, Stewart and Pattinson mercilessly teased their fans by getting this close to kissing but never actually delivering the goods. Even without an actual kiss, the tension made it a steamy, memorable moment destined to go down in MTV Awards history.
Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger for Brokeback Mountain, 2006
Gyllenhaal, who was solo because Ledger couldn’t make it to the awards, shared a funny yet moving message when he arrived at the podium. “I said to Heath — who isn’t here, I’m speaking on both of our behalves — but I said to him after this scene that you saw, ‘If we don’t win the MTV Movie Award for best kiss then it wasn’t worth it.’ It’s worth it now,” he joked. Gyllenhaal went on to say, “Thank you, not just from me, but from all those people struggling with love, which is all of us, as we continue to.”
Robert Hoffman and Briana Evigan for Step Up 2: The Streets, 2008
The then-IRL couple couldn’t keep their hands off each other during the ceremony. And after some handsy persuasion from Hoffman, Evigan stopped in the middle of her speech to full-on canoodle her costar.
Julia Stiles and Sean Patrick Thomas for Save the Last Dance, 2001
The dance movie costars gave the audience their money’s worth with a subdued but still very loving embrace. Sara and Derek forever!
Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart for Twilight: Eclipse, 2011
The third time the pair won best kiss for their vampire romance series (they would go on to claim a fourth award the following year), they finally delivered a ceremony smooch. But instead of kissing Stewart, Pattinson took to the audience to find someone who “would appreciate it a little more” — his onscreen rival, Taylor Lautner.
Carmen Electra, Amy Smart and Owen Wilson for Starsky & Hutch, 2004
Although her costars didn’t make it to the ceremony to give an encore of their three-way smooch, Electra made up for it by kissing presenters Paris Hilton and Snoop Dogg.
Will Ferrell and Sacha Baron Cohen for Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby, 2007
The two funnymen brought the passion to their acceptance speech, even getting down on the floor like Wilson and Devine.
Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams for The Notebook, 2005
The actors’ brilliant recreation of The Notebook‘s ultra-romantic make-out very well may never be topped on the MTV stage. We basically all reacted to that jump-and-kiss them same way as Lindsay Lohan and Hilary Duff, who were both shocked and utterly delighted. To this day, re-watching it is our “pleasure.”
The MTV Movie & TV Awards will air live from the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, at 8 p.m. ET.