Report: NFL wants to charge Super Bowl halftime acts
If Rihanna performs at the Super Bowl, she might have to pay for the privilege.
Christopher Polk / Getty Images North America
By James Parziale
The NFL wants Super Bowl halftime acts to pay to play.
According to a Wall Street Journal report, the league is looking to cash in by charging acts for the exposure they get during the big game.
Since many acts can receive an immediate bump in tour and record sales after a halftime performance, the NFL is using that exposure as leverage. Just ask January’s performer, Bruno Mars.
Per Billboard, the singer’s sales soared right after his performance at MetLife Stadium.
According to estimates from industry sources, the entertainer's latest album, "Unorthodox Jukebox," sold perhaps 40,000 copies in the week ending February 2. That would represent a 164% gain compared to the previous week, when it sold 15,000, according to Nielsen SoundScan.
Last year, Beyonce headlined the Super Bowl halftime show, where she was briefly joined by her Destiny's Child group members Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams. Unlike Mars, Beyonce didn't have a current album riding high on the charts at the time.
In the week ending February 3, 2013, Beyonce saw her most recent album, 2011's "4," re-enter the Billboard 200 at No. 100 with 4,000 sold (up 123%). The following week -- after a full week of sales impact was felt from the game -- the album climbed to No. 79 with 6,000 (up 59%).
While the WSJ report says that the NFL has narrowed down its choices to three possible acts -- Rihanna, Katy Perry and Coldplay – there’s another wrinkle the NFL has thrown in.
"While notifying the artists' camps of their candidacy, league representatives also asked at least some of the acts if they would be willing to contribute a portion of their post-Super Bowl tour income to the league, or if they would make some other type of financial contribution, in exchange for the halftime gig."
It's unclear whether this strategy would ensure another Janet Jackson Nipplegate incident doesn't occur, but it’s certainly a bold attempt by the league to continue to increase revenue.