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Russell hails 'the resurrection of Britney' at the MTV awards

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All of that seemed very far away as Britney took to the stage looking tanned, gym-honed and most importantly happy.

"I'm in shock," declared Britney, who was pretty in a lilac Atelier Versace mini-dress as she showed off the best pop video statuette for Piece Of Me, which also won best video and best female video.

The Louisiana-raised performer went on to thank "God first and foremost for just blessing me like this", and dedicate the award to her two sons and her fans. "This is for you," she said.

Making the recognition all the more special was the fact that though Britney has been nominated at the awards on 16 previous occasions, she's always walked away empty-handed.

Hosting the Las Vegas ceremony, British funnyman Russell Brand said the gala marked "the launch of a very new Britney Spears era". "Consider this the resurrection of Britney Spears," urged the outrageous comic. "If there was a female Christ, it's Britney."

Although it was very much the Toxic star's night other pop princesses also put their stamp on the proceedings. New mum Christina Aguilera performed a techno-inspired remix of her hit Genie In A Bottle in a raunchy leather ensemble, while Pink descended from the roof for her appearance, wearing an electric blue cape and boots.

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Britney celebrates her stunning comeback after her video for Piece Of Me took three prizes at the Las Vegas gala. Her performance at the event last year was given a lukewarm receptionPhoto: © Getty Imagesy
Photo: ©
Outrageous comic Russell Brand told the audience: "Consider this the launch of a very new Britney Spears era"Photo: © Getty Images
Photo: ©
Paris Hilton was there to present her with one of the Moonmen statuettes, which are the first the singer has received, despite being nominated on 16 previous occasionsPhoto: © Getty Images

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