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April 17, 2000

Nick kids go 'Wild' for Smith

Chris Gardner
The Hollywood Reporter

With kids in charge of the ballots, Will Smith and his "Wild Wild West" rapping grabbed three awards to lead the pack at Nickelodeon's 13th annual Kids' Choice Awards.

Smith, nominated for four awards, racked up three of Nick's signature orange blimps for favorite male singer, favorite song ("Wild Wild West") and favorite song from a movie ("Wild, Wild West").

Adam Sandler and master of ceremonies Rosie O'Donnell each picked up two awards at the ceremony taped Friday night at the Hollywood Bowl. According to O'Donnell, this year's KCA was the biggest ever, with 15 million votes cast to decide the winners and an audience of 14,000.

O'Donnell won for favorite voice from an animated movie for her work in "Tarzan" and also took home the highest honor of the night, the Hall of Fame Award for her charity work and humor. She accepted the golden blimp from Jennifer Love Hewitt with a heavy message for kids.

"Believe in yourself, be nice to one another, and never ever touch a gun," O'Donnell said.

A winner for favorite movie actor and favorite movie for "Big Daddy," Sandler also had a message for the frenzied crowd.

"Be nice to your parents," Sandler said after getting the audience to say hello to his own parents, Stan and Judy, standing backstage.

The favorite movie actress award went to "Sabrina the Teenage Witch" Melissa Joan Hart for her teen flick "Drive Me Crazy."

"I have to thank all of you for voting for me. This is the most important award I can think of because all of you voted," Hart said. "And this movie meant so much to me, and I'm so happy you guys supported it and watched it and liked it."

Jennifer Lopez, who opened the show performing her latest single "Feelin' So Good," beat out Christina Aguilera, Lou Bega and LFO for favorite new music artist. Also performing onstage were Jessica Simpson with Nick Lachey and the Goo Goo Dolls.

Other winners included the Backstreet Boys for favorite group, Britney Spears for favorite female singer, Nickelodeon's "All That" for favorite TV show, Amanda Bynes (Nick's "All That" and "The Amanda Show") for favorite TV actress and Mandy Moore for favorite rising star.

Joining O'Donnell as co-hosts were LL Cool J, David Arquette, Frankie Muniz and Mandy Moore. Celebrity presenters included Robert DeNiro, Mel Gibson, Ray Romano, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Ray Romano, 98 Degrees, Jamie Foxx, Carly Pope and Leslie Bibb.

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