5 things you didn't know about the Super Bowl halftime show.

With Super Bowl LVIII fast approaching, we decided to look back on the history behind one of the most watched and anticipated shows in the world, discovering some interesting snippets of info.

Without further ado, here are five things you didn't know about the Super Bowl halftime show.

1. Very few performers have played the halftime show more than once.

Stevie Wonder took to the stage in 1994 and 1999.

In 2013, Beyoncé headlined and in 2016 she made an appearance with Coldplay. In 2014, Bruno Mars headlined, and he too appeared in 2016 alongside Beyoncé and Coldplay. 

As for Justin Timberlake, he appeared with NSYNC in 2001 and then infamously starred alongside Janet Jackson in 2004. He then headlined in 2018. 

Approximately seven celebs have performed more than twice, including Mary J. Blige, Nelly and Gloria Estefan.

Image: Getty. 


2. The halftime shows used to be far more wholesome than they are today.

The first Super Bowl was held in 1967 and in its first years, college marching bands were headlining.

In the early years, some of the shows were also more of a Broadway Musical-style performance. The first 'celebrity' to star in a halftime show was Carol Channing in 1970 who was still a Broadway star. Additional acts over the years included drill teams, cheerleaders, marching bands and opera singers.

Speaking to The Guardian in 2016, Channing said of the experience: "It was like an opening night on Broadway, except we didn't have much time to prepare for that first appearance."

Image: Getty. 


3. Michael Jackson transformed the Super Bowl halftime show into what we know it as today.

It wasn’t until Michael Jackson performed in 1993, that the halftime show became a big production and all about showcasing the best in the music business.

His performance got higher ratings than the game itself, and it marked the first-ever increase in ratings at halftime.

With 133 million tuning in, it remains one of the most-watched halftime shows and one of the highest-rated telecasts of all time.

Image: Getty. 


4. Super Bowl halftime show performers aren't paid. 

Artists performing at the Super Bowl halftime show historically have made nothing.

"We do not pay the artists. We cover expenses and production costs," NFL spokesperson Joanna Hunter said to Forbes in 2016. It's rather the massive exposure and the opportunities that come with it that entice musicians and performers.

The Weeknd contributed US$7 million of his own funds to make his 2021 halftime show "what he envisioned". This amount was on top of what the sports organisation fronted, which has been reported to cost as much as US$10 million.

Mary J. Blige shared her thoughts on not being paid in 2022.

"Listen, you're gonna be paid for the rest of your life off of this," she told The Cruz Show, confirming that her performance is unpaid. 

"People are gonna be knocking at your doors. It's an opportunity of a lifetime. They don't have to pay me, but if they was paying, it would be a lot of money."

Image: Getty. 


5. Super Bowl halftime show ads cost millions for only seconds. 

Reports suggest that in 1967, a 30-second Super Bowl ad cost on average AU$52,000. These days, it costs more than AU$7 million to produce an ad. And for 2022, it's estimated CBS will total a record US$377 million in revenue. Now that's some cash. 

And amazingly, it kind of makes sense for the advertisers to spend what they do. 

According to a survey from Advocado, 42 per cent of Super Bowl viewers will tune in specifically to enjoy the advertisements. In fact, 50 per cent of viewers (predominantly American) have purchased a product or service based on one of these commercials.

Feature Image: Getty.

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