Janet Jackson Opens Up About That Infamous Super Bowl Moment With Justin Timberlake

By Gina Florio··  3 min read
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Janet Jackson Justin Timberlake

It sometimes feels like the world will never forget the 2004 Super Bowl featuring Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake. But Janet has decided to set the record straight in her new Lifetime documentary.

The premiere of Janet captured many people's attention as it was a glimpse into the life and career of longstanding Hollywood celebrity Janet Jackson. There was one topic in particular that turned heads – the infamous Super Bowl XXXVIII moment with Justin Timberlake.

Janet Shares Her Side of the Story

We all remember it. Janet and Justin were entertaining on stage with "Rock Your Body" and everything was going great – until he pulled back Janet's shirt and exposed her breast. On live network cable. We were all confused as to what happened. Was it really a wardrobe malfunction? Was it planned? Couldn't this have been prevented?

One of the strangest things we witnessed after that moment was Justin's career skyrocketing while Janet all but went into hiding afterwards. Justin went on to perform at the Grammy Awards that year while Janet's music was blacklisted from radio stations. It was as if she were being punished for the incident while he was being rewarded. But Janet doesn't see it that way at all, no matter how we interpret it.

"Honestly, this whole thing was blown way out of proportion. And, of course, it was an accident that should not have happened, but everyone is looking for someone to blame and that's got to stop," Janet recalled.

Janet actually shared that she had a conversation with Justin behind the cameras after it was all said and done. "If I were you, I wouldn't say anything," she said. "I don't want any drama for you. They're aiming all of this at me." She urged him to lay low and hold off on making an official statement to the press.

Janet and Justin Are Still Friends to This Day

Janet also said that she and Justin still maintain a close friendship, and she doesn't blame him for that day.

“Justin and I are very good friends, and we will always be very good friends,” she said. “We spoke just a few days ago. He and I have moved on, and it’s time for everyone else to do the same.”

In February 2021, Justin released an apology on his Instagram for both Britney Spears and Janet. "I specifically want to apologize to both individually, because I care for and respect these women and I know I failed," he wrote. "This is a larger conversation that I wholeheartedly want to be part of and grow from."

Even after 18 years we may never know the full truth of what really happened on that stage, but at least we know for sure that there's no bad blood between Janet and Justin.

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