Britney Spears 'Excited' to Kick Off Video Awards

09/03/2008 at 05:30 PM EDT

Britney Spears 'Excited' to Kick Off Video Awards
Britney Spears
Todd Williamson/WireImage
Britney Spears will open the show at the MTV Video Music Awards on Sunday, PEOPLE has learned.

"MTV has long played an important role in my career. How can I not be there to kick off their 25th VMAs?" Spears tells PEOPLE in a statement. "I'm excited to open the entire show, to say hi to my fans and to be nominated."

Spears – who has been nominated 16 times and never won a Moon Man – is up for Best Female Video, Best Pop Video and Video of the Year for "Piece of Me."

It's still not known how she'll open the show. A source confirms that the opening segment will not feature a musical performance by Spears.

Adds MTV Networks Music President Van Toffler: "Britney has done everything from perform with a snake, lock lips with Madonna and prove that what happens in Vegas doesn't always stay in Vegas," he says, referring to her lackluster performance at the awards show in Sin City last year. "I can't wait to see what she does to kick off this year's show."

The VMAs air on MTV at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Sunday from Los Angeles.

2007: Britney bombs at the MTV Video Music Awards!
See Britney's FIRST PEOPLE cover!

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