John Travolta doesn’t exactly have a great track record when it comes to presenting at awards shows (remember when he called Idina Menzel “Adele Dazeem” at the 2014 Oscars?). And although he didn’t butcher anyone’s name at the MTV Video Music Awards on Monday night (August 26), he did almost pass off the Moon Person for Video of the Year to Jade Jolie — one of the drag queens featured in Taylor Swift‘s “You Need to Calm Down” music video — instead of Swift herself.
“He was so confident that it was her,” Todrick Hall, Swift’s friend and the co-executive producer of her Pride-themed music video, said on Jerry O’Connell’s talk show this week. “I loved it. Yeah, I saw it and we talked about it backstage.” And yes, Swift thought the instantly viral moment was just as funny. “Taylor thought it was hilarious,” Hall said.
For Jolie, being mistaken for Swift in such an honest way was a really wonderful compliment — especially since she’s become so well-known for being a Taylor Swift impersonator. “Jade Jolie has made quite the living performing where she performs at Play Nightclub, and she is a fantastic drag queen,” Hall said. “But everybody knows that she is like the Taylor Swift doppelgänger. So I think that was like the highest compliment he could ever pay her. He was very confused.”
Jolie, on the other hand, was just excited that she was almost awarded her first-ever VMA. “Almost got my first award tonight thanks to @johntravolta,” she wrote on Instagram alongside a clip of the epic moment.
But make no mistake — Jolie did win a VMA on Monday night, which Swift confirmed herself in another video posted by her lookalike. “So we are backstage, not really able to process,” Swift said in the video. “What did just happen?” And when Jolie told Swift that she won Video of the Year, the “ME!” singer was quick to correct that statement. “We. It’s a we,” Swift said.
Now, excuse us as we watch the clip of Travolta hilariously trying to give Jolie the award for the thousandth time. It truly doesn’t get old.