The organizers of the Super Bowl XXXVIII halftime show had hoped that a surprise guest would get people talking long after the game, but they wound up with one more surprise than they had bargained for.
Janet Jackson’s right breast was exposed at the end of her performance after Justin Timberlake – who was expected to be the night’s biggest surprise – pulled off a piece of Janet’s costume. As a result the move, some 72,000 fans in Reliant Stadium and an estimated 100 million watching around the world saw more of Janet than expected.
“I am sorry if anyone was offended by the wardrobe malfunction during the halftime performance at the Super Bowl,” Timberlake said of the incident. “It was not intentional and is regrettable.”
MTV, which produced the halftime show for sister network CBS, issued a statement shortly after the game saying, “The tearing of Janet Jackson’s costume was unrehearsed, unplanned, completely unintentional and was inconsistent with assurances we had about the content of the performance. MTV regrets this incident occurred and we apologize to anyone who was offended by it.”
Jackson did not release an official statement after the game, but her representatives told MTV News that she apologizes for the incident.
CBS, which broadcast the Super Bowl and its halftime show live Sunday evening, also apologized, saying, “CBS deeply regrets the incident that occurred during the Super Bowl halftime show. We attended all rehearsals throughout the week and there was no indication that any such thing would happen. The moment did not conform to CBS broadcast standards and we would like to apologize to anyone who was offended.”