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Britney Spears ‘Not’ Performing at Super Bowl 2018: Pepsi Executive

The head of sports marketing for PepsiCo cleared up a rumor that Britney Spears, who performed at the Super Bowl halftime show in 2001, might be returning to football’s biggest stage in 2018.

“I can tell you it’s not Britney [Spears],” executive Justin Toman told MAC Presents founder Marcie Allen, who asked for a hint about next year’s music performer during a panel she moderated on “The Brand Perspective” at the Venues Now Conference, held in Beverly Hills on July 12 (the conference continues through Friday, July 14). “We’ll reveal in due time,” he teased, adding that performer “rumors always start around this time.”

Indeed, scores of reports this week cited a desire by Spears’ “team” to headline the 2018 game. In the New York Daily News, an insider is quoted arguing that “She has the hits package and appeal to be a headliner.” It is also claimed that the singer is in “serious talks” for the gig.

The NFL and its broadcast and corporate partners are notoriously tight-lipped about music bookings as they applie to the halftime show, but Toman did reveal a bit about the process. “It’s us, the artist and the NFL, and at the end, everybody has to align,” he said, further explaining that the NFL “contracts the performance” and “no money is exchanged.” As a big brand, “finding the mutual shared win” is the goal,” said Toman.

The last time Spears performed on the Super Bowl, she was joined by then boyfriend Justin Timberlake and his group NSync along with rock band Aerosmith. The game, between the Baltimore Ravens and the New York Giants, ended with the Ravens winning 34-7.

Variety has reached out to Spears’ camp for comment.

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