Tonight during the 2018 Super Bowl halftime show, Justin Timberlake projected footage of Prince on a sheet and performed “I Would Die 4 U” along with the video.
As Prince’s hometown of Minneapolis lit up in purple, Timberlake said, “Two fingers in the air for Prince tonight
Timberlake returned to the show 14 years after his infamous 2004 performance with Janet Jackson. Jackson herself released a statement yesterday confirming that she wouldn’t be joining Timberlake. Earlier in the night, Hamilton’s Leslie Odom Jr. performed “America the Beautiful” with two youth choirs. Pink then sang the national anthem.
Speaking last month about performing with Jackson at the 2004 Super Bowl Halftime Show, Timberlake admitted that he “stumbled” through the gig.
Jackson released her own statement Saturday (Feb. 3), ahead of the big game.“To put to rest any speculation or rumors as to whether I will be performing at the Super Bowl tomorrow: I will not,” she confirmed to People. “Thank you for your support and I do look forward to seeing you all very soon.”
Justin Timberlake’s first Super Bowl Halftime Show performance 14 years ago will always be remembered for the infamous Janet Jackson “wardrobe malfunction”–which inspired, among other things, a record number of FCC complaints and the creation of YouTube.
Neither Timberlake nor Jackson were paid for their efforts, but it wasn’t because of anything related to the so-called Nipplegate scandal. The NFL does not pay its halftime acts a performance fee as a matter of policy. That’s right: top earners like Katy Perry, Bruno Mars, Beyoncé, Coldplay and Lady Gaga all played for free in recent years, and Timberlake’s Pepsi Halftime Show gig at Super Bowl LII will be no different.