Credit: Kevin Mazur/

EW’s Archana Ram already recapped what you saw on television during last night’s Twilight Promotional Show MTV Movie Awards (and asked for your thoughts, too!), but what happened in the house during the always wacky ceremony at L.A.’s Gibson Ampitheatre? Oh, so much, folks — so much! And I’ve got those deets for you, as I was there to experience the madness first hand. There’s lots to talk about: The insane fashions! The beautiful stage! The speech that charmed the crowd! And so much more, but mostly — let’s be honest — it was all just one big plug for Twilight. Read on for a take of what went on behind the scenes, what you didn’t see on your television last night…

The Fashions: Some of the best action at any event is beforehand, so I arrived a few minutes early to do a cursory walk through the lobby of the Gibson to get a flavor of the crowd. The fashion was the most startling. There was the high end stuff, like the pretty-pretty Pretty Little Liars star Ashley Benson in a cute, short, flirty dress. And the sensible, like the demure — but appropriate — frock Friday Night Lights‘ star Aimee Teegarden was wearing. But mostly: The people at the show were wearing the craziest of outfits, highlighted by the trashiest, shortest skirts on the planet; dresses that looked to be from the Real Housewives collection; the guy behind me in the theater who was wearing a sparky suit with a cheetah-print hankerchief in the pocket; at least one fur coat (in L.A.?!? in June?!?); the guy in front of me who was wearing multiple rhinestone-encrusted skulls around his neck; and just generally the idea of glitter. Anyway, it was really a bunch of winners in the theater there last night.

The Stage: I’m sure it came off well on screen, but live, in person, the stage was particularly delightful. Host Jason Sudeikis kept making fun of it, but really, it came off as something like a spectacular, icicle spider web… in a forest? Maybe? Anyway, it really seemed to embody youth and MTV. Bravo.

The Trivia: Before the show began, the audience was treated to trivia on the screens to pass the time. Who was the actor to play the lead in the new Karate Kid? (Jaden Smith.) What group performed “It’s Gonna Be Me” at the 2000 MTV Movie Awards? (‘NSYNC.) What movie did Gnarls Barkley pull inspiration from for their performance at the 2006 MTV Movie Awards? (Star Wars.) Kinda fun to pass the time, but not exactly mind-bending, as you can tell.

The Old People: I saw a bunch of handlers parade them in before the show and take them down toward the stage, and just thought: What are they doing here? I was obsessed! And the answer came quickly, when early on host Jason Sudeikis made the joke about The King’s Speech fans being in the house and the cameras cut to them. I just have to wonder: Did they understand anything else that was going on during the evening?

The Tweets: Screens above the stage urged the live audience members to engage via Twitter! “Tweet From Your Seats” it said, telling folks to use the #atmovieawards hash-tag to detonate that they were there in person.

The Warm-Up Comic: Bill, the guy responsible for getting the crowd ready to go, got funny (go figure!) before the show, imploring the crowd to get rowdy. “What kind of energy is that?” he yelled, after he didn’t get the enthusiastic response he asked for. “That’s like, yay, Sanjaya is here.” Oh, burn!

The Host: Jason Sudeikis really enraptured the crowd in the theater, and he received a standing ovation when he first walked out. On commercial breaks, it was easy to spy him casually walking around the stage, not looking harried or nuts at all. In short: He done good, especially evidenced by the near-constant chuckles from the audience. Can we give him a shot at the MTV VMAs this fall maybe? Let’s get that campaign started.

The Twilight Insanity: The big winner of the night was, of course, Twilight. Not only did the movie take home multiple awards, it got the biggest response from the crowd. Always. Robert Pattinson? Yay! Kristen Stewart? Yay! Taylor Lautner? Yay! Honestly, when it was time to award the Best Movie, lots of the crowd inside the theater were already headed for the door because, duh, there was no way that Twilight wasn’t going to take home the popcorn trophy. Actually, kind of made of a bit of an annoying awards show. Too much Twilight! What fun is it when you know what movie is going to win every award?

The Performances: Of course, you saw the two performances, from the Foo Fighters and Lupe Fiasco/Trey Songz. They were great (errr…) and all, but something that you didn’t see made them kind of fall flat live in the theater. During the commercial breaks, video of vintage musical performances from past MTV Movie Awards played on the screens. The old performances — everyone from The Fugee’s “Killing Me Softly” in 1996 to Mariah Carey’s “We Belong Together” in 2005 — made the ones from last night seem, sadly, mediocre. It’s hard to explain, but it’s true. Like, where were the super superstars? The Movie Awards have had some seriously amazing performances in the past.

The Green Suit: On TV, you saw Jim Carrey appear on stage in a suit that was showing clips of, among other things, two dogs going at it. On stage, however, we just saw him wearing a green suit. But what a cool effect, right?

The Best Speech: At least inside the Gibson, the best received speech was by Grown Ups‘ pint-sized cutie-pie Alexys Nycole Sanchez, who completely charmed the crowd after winning Best Line from a Movie with the now-classic, “I Wanna Get Chocolate Wasted.” Move over, Reese and Robert! Alexys one-upped you.

The Cat Calls: While Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart were on stage, accepting for Best Kiss, you could hear multiple people in the crowd screaming, “Do it!” And while Ashton Kutcher stood on stage with Nicki Minaj? My favorite shout-out from the audience was the simple word: “Winning!” Made me smile.

The After Party: I skipped the official after party because it was raining (ewww, in L.A.!) as I left the show and the event was being held outside, but the invite promised that “this event is not yet rated.” The only thing that would make the party worth going to would be an appearance by host Jason Sudeikis. Mmhmm.

And that’s that.

Tanner on Twitter: @EWTanStransky

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