Plans for Delay as Janet Hosts 'SNL'
Reuters - 3/4/04
She may not be ready for prime
time just yet, but Janet Jackson has been booked on NBC's "Saturday
Night Live" next month, her first planned network TV performance
since baring her breast at the Super Bowl.
NBC said on Thursday that the
37-year-old pop diva will host and perform on the April 10 edition
of the show, which is broadcast live on the East Coast from New
York City. Jackson previously appeared on "SNL" as
a musical guest in 1994.
Jackson's last U.S. television
appearance was her notorious Super Bowl halftime performance
on Feb. 1, which ended with duet partner Justin Timberlake ripping
open her costume to expose her right breast during CBS's live
A public uproar over the flash
of nudity sparked inquiries by lawmakers on Capitol Hill and
the Federal Communications Commission, as well as an industry-wide
crackdown by television and radio broadcasters on sexually explicit
Jackson, herself, was barred
by CBS from the Grammy Awards telecast a week later after she
rebuffed the network's demands to issue an on-air apology as
a condition for appearing on that show. She subsequently bowed
out of plans to star in an ABC TV movie about singing great Lena
Horne after Horne objected to being portrayed by Jackson, saying
she was offended by the Super Bowl incident.
Jackson's next album, "Damita
Jo," is due out later this month.
A spokesman for "Saturday
Night Live" said he knew of no plans by the network to carry
the April 10 show on a special tape-delay, as CBS did for the
Grammys and ABC did for the Oscars as a precaution against unplanned
vulgarities in the aftermath of Jackson's halftime show.
"SNL" already has lampooned
the incident with a recent promo in which guest host Megan Mullally
of "Will & Grace" ripped off the breast pocket
from "American Idol" star Clay Aiken. And in a parody
of ABC's "Nightline," Ted Koppel (played by Darrell
Hammond) stymied several Democratic presidential contenders by
wanting to talk about nothing else but Jackson.
"Saturday Night Live"
has itself run afoul of network censors for profanity, such as
the notorious 1981 utterance of the "f" word by Charles
Rocket and a similar incident involving Norm Macdonald.
NBC is a unit of General Electric
Co., CBS is owned by Viacom Inc. and ABC is part of the Walt
Disney Co. entertainment group.