The green slime oozed freely and the enthusiasm raged at a fever pitch Saturday during Nickelodeon’s 17th annual Kids’ Choice Awards, which crowned animated smash “Finding Nemo,” and hip-hop duo OutKast as the top choices of children voting coast to coast.
This year’s ceremony, held at UCLA’s Pauley Pavilion, was co-hosted by Mike Myers and Cameron Diaz in a canny bit of “Shrek 2” promotion (they portray the voices of the ogre and the princess, respectively). It marked the first time in eight years that Rosie O’Donnell failed to preside.
Myers would find himself dripping slime by the show’s conclusion, though it proved a significantly less satisfying moment than the earlier sliming of tycoon twins Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen — who were caught in a fountain of the stuff at the show’s midway point while presenting.
As for the awards themselves, the KCAs — which found 17 million kids voting both online and by telephone for their fave actors, musicians, sports stars, movie, TV series, video game, book and, uh, movie fart — had a decided OutKast ring this time. The Grammy-winning duo ended up with two of the distinctive orange blimps, for favorite music group and favorite song (”Hey Ya!”).
OutKast member Andre 3000 opened the show with “Hey Ya!” accompanied by his young son. His conrade, Big Boi, later performed “The Way You Move,” with help from Sleepy Brown and Sean Combs’ former manservant, Bentley Farnsworth.
“We’re having a great time, and it is so great to learn how to read. You gotta read, that’s it, and count . . . and stay off them drugs,” Andre 3000 told the crowd. Big Boi urged the tykes to tell their parents to get out and vote.
Also carting off a pair of awards was Ellen DeGeneres, earning the trophy as favorite animated voice for her portrayal of Dorie in “Finding Nemo,” and accepting the award for the film’s top movie win.
“Enjoy being a kid. It’s the best time of your life. Don’t grow up too fast,” she said.
The screaming kids in the crowd appeared to be taking her advice to heart, just as they were following the orders of favorite movie actor winner Jim Carrey (for “Bruce Almighty”).
“The most important thing in life growing up is to learn how to play,” Carrey said.
Amanda Bynes celebrated her 18th birthday Saturday by winning her second consecutive blimp in the favorite movie actress category, this time for “What a Girl Wants.” Frankie Muniz took the Kids’ Choice statuette for a second consecutive year as favorite TV actor for “Malcolm in the Middle,” while Raven-Symone was the TV actress choice for “That’s So Raven.” The Nickelodeon comedy series “All That” was honored as favorite TV show.
Other repeat winners included skateboard legend Tony Hawk (favorite male athlete) and the Los Angeles Lakers (favorite sports team) as well as “SpongeBob SquarePants” (a second consecutive double for favorite cartoon and video game).
And what can you say about an awards show in which Adam Sandler is bestowed the Wannabe Award -- given annually to the celebrity that kids most want to be like? Or one that finds “X-Men” star Hugh Jackman winning the title as finest celebrity burper.
Quipped Jackman in his acceptance: “Finally, something my family can be proud of.”