The infamous Super Bowl performance at the heart of the "nipplegate" controversy will reportedly take center stage in a new project from Left/Right TV -- Justin Timberlake apologized to both Spears and Jackson in the wake of "Framing Britney Spears."
In the aftermath of the Spears documentary, which opened up a new discussion about how women are treated in the media, Justin Timberlake apologized to Spears for his behavior toward her after their breakup, and also to Jackson after the Super Bowl incident that shocked a nation. TooFab has reached out to representatives for both Timberlake and Jackson for response to this new project.
"I specifically want to apologize to Britney Spears and Janet Jackson both individually, because I care for and respect these women and I know I failed,” Timberlake wrote on Instagram. “Because of my ignorance, I didn’t recognize it for all that it was while it was happening in my own life but I do not want to ever benefit from others being pulled down again.”
It was the halftime show of Super Bowl XXXVIII when Timberlake dramatically tore a piece off of Jackson's costume. For a brief few seconds, Jackson's bare nipple was exposed on national television, and it quickly became the biggest scandal of all time, if contemporary media was to be believed.
Both performers indicated it was an accident, saying more of the costume came off than intended, and the whole incident was quickly dubbed a "wardrobe malfunction," immediately adding that into the lexicon. The fact the phrase wound up in the dictionary is indicative of how big of a story this was, and how pervasive.
While there has been no indication as to what the subject matter of the new documentary might be, it's reasonable to suspect it might explore the aftermath of the incident, which saw a disproportionate amount of the blame and negative consequences laid at the feet of Jackson, while Timberlake's career went on as if nothing untoward had happened.
The 2004 incident preceded the pervasive omnipresence of social media, but that didn't stop Jackson from enduring unrelenting abuse online and in the print media.
The moment was analyzed and broken down over and over again, with YouTube cofounder Jawed Karim saying that the unprecedented interest in those few seconds at least partially inspired the creation of the website.
Discussion on what is and isn't appropriate on television dominated in the immediate aftermath of the moment. The FCC ultimately fined CBS $550,000 for the incident, but that decision was vacated on appeal eight years later in 2012.
At this time, it is unlikely that either Jackson or Timberlake would be involved in the project, just as Spears was not involved in the project about her life and conservatorship. But it is nevertheless possible that they will have some reaction to it once it airs, just as the backlash from "Framing" elicited that apology from Timberlake.