Justin Timberlake Takes on the Half-Time Stage


William DeMuria, Editor-in-Chief, Pop Culture Editor

The list goes on: Madonna, The Rolling Stones, Beyonce, Katy Perry, Prince, and now, Justin Timberlake.

In a video posted to his Twitter account featuring Jimmy Fallon, Timberlake confirmed rumors that he will be the 2018 Super Bowl Half-Time Show performer. Timberlake, who is best known for being a member of ‘N Sync and his subsequent solo career, has been chosen by the NFL in an attempt to trend more towards a younger audience for the show.

Beginning last month, rumors began to swirl that Timberlake would take on the task of performing the Super Bowl Half-Time show. However, as they have in recent years, neither the NFL or Pepsi, who sponsors the event, chose to comment. The NFL and Pepsi typically remain tight-lipped when it comes to details of the Half-Time show, going as far as to not even reveal the set-list for the highly anticipated performances until the show starts.

Despite this being Timberlake’s first time headlining the year’s most-watched performance, he has made appearances numerous times in past years. At the 2001 Super Bowl, Timberlake and his fellow ‘N Sync members opened up Aerosmith’s Half-Time show with a performance of their hit, “Bye Bye Bye.” In addition, Timberlake also performance at the 2004 Super Bowl, featuring in a performance of his hit, “Rock Your Body.” However, Timberlake assured fans in a televised interview on NBC’s Sunday Night Football that the events of that show “won’t happen this time.”

Timberlake’s big performance, which will take place on February 4 at the U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, will mark his return to the Super Bowl stage 14 years after his controversial performance with Janet Jackson. During a performance with Jackson at the 2004 Super Bowl, Timberlake grabbed a piece of her clothing, leading to a major wardrobe malfunction visible to viewers across the nation. The incident sparked outrage, with Jackson even receiving a lifetime Super Bowl ban.

Since his departure from the boy-band ‘N Sync, Timberlake has had a highly successful solo singing career. In addition to releasing four widely-acclaimed studio albums, Timberlake is the recipient of 10 Grammy Awards. Most recently, his 2013 album “The 20/20 Experience- The Complete Experience” was nominated for Best Pop Vocal Album at the 2014 Grammy Awards. Aside from his personal music releases, Timberlake also topped the Billboard Music charts with the release of his widely popular single, “Can’t Stop the Feeling,” from the DreamWorks’s Animated film, Trolls.

Timberlake’s fans have high expectations for his biggest performance to date. However, the singer has assured fans that he is trying his best to make his Half-Time show enjoyable for the millions who will be watching. “What I really want to do is take the opportunity to put together a performance that feels like it unifies. I feel like that would be the ultimate accomplishment, and then the icing on the cake is at some point within that 12 minutes that everybody is shaking their booty,” Timberlake shared.

Viewers can tune in on February 4 to see what Timberlake has in store for the Super Bowl Half-Time Show. Though details are scarce, if there’s one thing that is for sure, it is that Timberlake will not disappoint.