It's officially Football Season, which means NFL fans are already talking about the Super Bowl, which is set to take place at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas, Nevada on February 11, 2024. While it will be a while before we know which two teams will be facing off in Super Bowl LVIII, there is one big piece of news that just dropped: the halftime show performer. The big game performance is always guaranteed to get people talking, and this season will see Usher taking the stage. Apple Music, the NFL, and Roc Nation announced the "Yeah!" singer will be following in the footsteps of many legends, most recently a pregnant Rhianna.
"It's an honor of a lifetime to finally check a Super Bowl performance off my bucket list. I can't wait to bring the world a show unlike anything else they've seen from me before," Usher said in a statement (via Variety). "Thank you to the fans and everyone who made this opportunity happen. I'll see you real soon."
"Usher is an icon whose music has left an indelible mark on the cultural landscape throughout his career, we couldn't be more excited to have him headline this year's Apple Music Super Bowl Halftime Show," Seth Dudowsky, NFL Head of Music, added. "We look forward to working with Usher, Roc Nation and Apple Music to bring fans another Halftime Show for the history books."
"Usher is the ultimate artist and showman. Ever since his debut at the age of 15, he's been charting his own unique course. Beyond his flawless singing and exceptional choreography, Usher bares his soul," JAY-Z shared. "His remarkable journey has propelled him to one of the grandest stages in the world. I can't wait to see the magic."
"The Apple Music Super Bowl Halftime Show is one of the most highly anticipated music events of the year and we're excited to bring this legendary show to fans all over the world in Spatial Audio, along with tons of exclusive videos, interviews, playlists and so much more across Apple Music," Oliver Schusser, Apple's Vice President of Apple Music, Apple TV+, Sports, and Beats, explained. "We are so proud of what we were able to accomplish together with the NFL and Roc Nation last year and now with the insanely talented Usher set to take the stage we're looking forward to another incredible Halftime Show from one of the world's all-time greatest performers."
Pepsi Originally Scrapped MacGruber Super Bowl Commercial:
In addition to the big game and the halftime performance, one of the most-anticipated parts of Super Bowl Sunday is the ads. In 2009, the marketing team at Pepsi approached Saturday Night Live's Lorne Michaels about collaborating on an ad for Super Bowl XLIII. Michaels pitched an idea of featuring the fan-favorite Will Forte character, MacGruber. However, Pepsi temporarily backed out of the deal. While appearing in a recent episode of Dana Carvey and David Spade's Fly on the Wall podcast, Forte revealed Pepsi was uninterested in the MacGyver parody until Michaels and Forte went ahead and filmed three ads anyway, which they ended up pitching to the company.
"Pepsi had approached Lorne and said, 'Hey, do you want to take an SNL sketch and turn it into a commercial,' and somehow he picked MacGruber. When he told Pepsi that MacGruber was what he wanted to go with, they quickly bowed out and said, 'You know what, maybe we don't want to do a Super Bowl commercial,'" Forte explained.
After seeing the ads, Pepsi agreed to air one of them mere days before the game. The two other commercials went on to air during the SNL broadcast the following week.
He added, "So, Lorne said, 'You know what, let's keep making this thing and just make it good enough that they'll want to do it.' So we said alright and rallied the troops and we did it and brought Richard Dean Anderson in. We decided because there was no guarantee this would go anywhere, we would make a sketch for the show at the same time. So, we got to hang around with him for a whole day once, and he was so cool."
Are you excited Usher will be performing at the Super Bowl in 2024? Tell us in the comments!