Justin Timberlake almost avoided controversy with his Super Bowl LII halftime performance, but not quite.
The “Man of the Woods” singer had fans at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis on their feet with a raucous performance of hit songs like “Can’t Stop The Feeling” and “Rock Your Body”.
It was reported a planned Prince hologram was scrapped from the halftime show after Timberlake spoke with Prince’s family, as well as the “Purple Rain” singer’s longtime collaborator Sheila E.
And although they did not necessarily use a hologram, the Super Bowl did project a giant image of Prince performing live behind Timberlake. The headliner played Prince’s “I Will Die 4 U” on the piano, while a moving recreation of Prince performed with him.
Many praised Timberlake’s performance, including longtime bromance Jimmy Fallon.
While comedian Sinbad, as well as plenty of others, blasted Timberlake for deceiving Prince fans in a relatively NSFW tweet.
Despite the backlash, Prince’s longtime friend and sometimes collaborator Morris Day took to social media to insist Timberlake “did Prince proud.”