FROM AD WEEK - NEW YORK America Online, the sponsor of this year's Super Bowl halftime show, is seeking a refund in the wake of singer Janet Jackson's breast-baring incident during the telecast, sources said.
The Time Warner Internet unit is asking the National Football League, which sold the halftime sponsorship, to pay up, according to sources. AOL planned to replay the halftime show on its service, but cancelled in light of a Federal Communications Commission probe into the incident. The halftime show featured a duet that ended with singer Justin Timberlake pulling off part of Jackson's costume to reveal her right breast.
The NFL, however, believes the compensation should be provided by Viacom's CBS and MTV, which aired and produced the event, respectively, sources said. On Monday, MTV in a statement called the incident "unrehearsed [and] unplanned."
"We're still gathering information and we'll continue talking with AOL," said an NFL representative. A CBS rep said the NFL sells the halftime sponsorship, adding that, "Since this is not our sponsorship, there's not much else we can say."
Meanwhile, sources said that the NFL has cut Justin Timberlake's N' Sync band mate, JC, from performing in this weekend's Pro Bowl halftime show in Honolulu. Hawaiian performers have replaced the singer, sources said.