Justin Timberlake has apologized to Britney Spears in a passionate Instagram post, seen here, where he addressed times in the past when he did not stand up for what was right.
He wrote he was aware of the messages addressed to him from fans since the release of the documentary The New York Times Presents: Framing Britney Spears. The documentary took a deep dive into the public rise and fall of the singer and created a firestorm of interest in her conservatorship. It also shone a light on the way Britney was treated by those she loved and trusted.
Justin shared he was deeply sorry and specifically wanted to apologize to Britney and Janet Jackson, his one-time Super Bowl co-star. He wrote he cared for and respected the women and knows he failed them.
In 2004, what was described as a “wardrobe malfunction” occurred when Justin pulled back part of Janet’s outfit and exposed her breast. Although both performers apologized, Janet bore the brunt of the negative publicity and subsequent fallout.
Justin remarked he felt compelled to respond in part because this was a larger conversation he wholeheartedly wanted to be a part of and grow from.
Britney met the curly-haired teen idol at the age of 11 when they co-starred on The Mickey Mouse Club. They were a teenage super couple in the early 2000s, however, their breakup saw the pop princess treated very differently than Justin.
When he used an actress who resembled Britney in a music video for the 2002 song “Cry Me a River,” he let fans believe Britney cheated on him, causing the end of their relationship. He had never contradicted that narrative, which led to severe backlash against her at the time.
In his post, Justin referred to that incident, calling himself “ignorant” and unable to recognize how flawed his actions were.
He also wrote he understood his apology did not absolve his actions.
“I care deeply about the wellbeing of people I love and have loved. I can do better and will do better,” he added.
Justin’s followers appeared happy he spoke out.
“No matter what anyone says. It’s never too late to say sorry or change,” wrote one fan.
“Britney and Janet deserved this,” a second follower claimed.
“Very noble first step. Keep going. We fans appreciate the accountability,” penned a third grateful user.
His wife, actress Jessica Biel, also took the time to respond.
“I love you,” she simply wrote.