Justin Timberlake Just Mentioned Britney Spears' Memoir

Justin Timberlake apparently wants to continue singing throughout the show. During a private concert opening the Fontainebleau in Las Vegas, the singer appeared to reference Britney Spears' memoir The Woman In before performing her 2002 single "Cry Me A River." Me ," a single inspired by their relationship, was criticized by Britney Spears. and the public.

Fan video from the event shows Timberlake telling the crowd, "No disrespect intended," before singing, "But aren't we all entertainers?" a reference to Nirvana's 1991 hit "Smells Like Teen" Spirit” tribute.

As BuzzFeed points out, Timberlake debuted the Nirvana song on "Holy Grail," a collaboration with Jay-Z, and often begins his "Cry Me A River" performances with the verse. But given the prior disclaimer and the appropriate timing of Spears' book, fans thought his choice of words was funny.

Why Fans Think This Is Spear Coded

In the TikTok comments section, viewers expressed why they believed Timberlake's comments were coded by Spears, and even wondered why he still chose to perform the song despite the controversy. "His entire discography and his choice of this song??? Sir, you mean disrespectful," one person pointed out. "Is this his only song? No disrespect intended," another fan asked.

Justin Timberlake performs at the Fontainebleau grand opening celebration on December 13, 2023 in Las Vegas . Bryan Steffy/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

Other fans accused Timberlake of stirring up trouble with his opening remarks. "Okay, that was a bit redundant to begin with, just singing the song," one fan pointed out, while another claimed, "He said 'no disrespect' but he knew what he was doing."

"He has a lot of songs he could sing. He doesn't need to go on this act. It's disrespectful," one person argued.

Spears reacts to 'Cry Me A River'

Spears dated Timberlake for three years before breaking up in 2002, after which he released "Cry Me A River," a song about discovering his partner's infidelity.

The music video, starring a woman who bears a striking resemblance to Spears, told the story of her infidelity with Timberlake, who later made vulgar attacks on her and their relationship in interviews.

Justin Timberlake and Britney Spears at the Clive Davis Pre-Grammy Party in Beverly Hills, California. L. Cohen/WireImage/Getty Images

Spears remained largely silent about the controversy until her 2023 memoir wrote that Timberlake broke up with her over text messages and that she was distraught and withdrew from the public eye before the video was released. “In the news media, I was portrayed as a prostitute who broke the heart of America’s golden child,” she wrote.

"Here's the truth: I was unconscious in Louisiana and he was running happily in Hollywood."

While she admitted to having a fling with choreographer Wade Robson, Spears said Timberlake "neglected to mention the few times" he allegedly cheated on her. "In Hollywood, men have always had more leeway than women," she wrote.

"I saw men being encouraged to badmouth women in order to be famous and powerful. But I was devastated."

2002, Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake. Kevin Winter/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

Timberlake apologized to Spears after a previous interview he gave resurfaced in the 2021 documentary Framing Britney Spears , and she appeared to forgive him after dancing to his song on Instagram.

However, Spears said in her book that he may never know what humiliation feels like. "I don't think Justin realizes the power he has in shaming me," she wrote. "I think he still doesn't get it."