The internet loves an excuse to speculate about potential celebrity feuds. Enter: A strategic camera cutaway at last night's Billboard Music Awards. During one of Taylor Swift's two acceptance speeches, the camera glanced over to Demi Lovato, who wasn't exactly beaming. This doesn't mean Lovato is grouching on Swift, but it does mean the internet will quickly leap to the conclusion that she is.
"I haven't been to an awards show in a few years," Swift told the crowd. "And it is so nice to be here tonight." She then dedicated the award to "future female artists who just picked up guitar or learned to play piano." It was meant to be a sweet moment, soured by what Twitter took to be some ire coming from Lovato's direction.
Lovato and Swift are part of the post-Disney generation; both artists emerged from teen superstardom to claim generous adult careers — Lovato is busy collaborating with legend Christina Aguilera, while Swift is touring the country with a massive snake-themed stadium tour. This pits them against one another, at least in the minds of the public.
This cutaway occurred when Swift accepted the award for Top Female Artist, a category that also included Demi Lovato. Another reason Lovato could look crestfallen? Well, she'd just lost an award, one that's actually entirely based on sales. Refinery29 has reached out to representation for Lovato for comment.
The BBMAs were a night made up of celebrity cutaways, too. They're the bread and butter of awards telecasts — when the happenings on stage get boring, look to the audience, where celebs might have something more nuanced in store. When Shawn Mendes and Khalid took the stage for a tribute to victims of gun violence, the camera glanced over the musician Halsey, who was teary-eyed. And, during the same Swift acceptance speech that saw Demi's cutaway, the camera cut to Camila Cabello, who gave a doofy wink to Swift. (Cabello is currently on tour with Swift.)
Not to mention, when Lovato took the stage for "Fall In Line" with Christina Aguilera, a number of celebrities looked overcome. Tyra Banks — a contender for BBMAs MVP for her grand reactions — mouthed, "That was powerful!" after their performance. The K-Pop group BTS, which has its own massive fandom, looked stunned during Lovato's performance.
After reactions like that, who cares about a wee moment during a Taylor Swift acceptance speech?