The Weeknd Teases What to Expect From His Super Bowl Halftime Show and How He's Using the Stadium

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We're just days away from Super Bowl LV, and The Weeknd's highly anticipated Pepsi Super Bowl Halftime Show!

The "Save Your Tears" singer is set to take the stage inside Tampa's Raymond James Stadium on Sunday, Feb. 7, and now we're learning even more details about what to expect from his sure-to-be epic performance. During an NFL press conference on Thursday, ET's Kevin Frazier asked The Weeknd about reports that he put $7 million of his own money into his halftime show, and that it will take place entirely in the stands.

"Well, due to COVID-19 and for the safety of the players and the workers, we kind of built this stage within the stadium," The Weeknd explained. "We're also using the field as well, but we wanted to kind of do something that we've never done before."

"Yeah, so we built the stage and the stadium," he added. "But I'm not going to tell you anything else, because you have to watch on Sunday."

As many of his fans know, The Weeknd has spent the last year fully committed to his After Hours theme, performing at various awards shows in a red suit, black shirt and tie ensemble, complete with head bandages to mimic what he calls the "absurd" culture of Hollywood. The singer confirmed he will, however, be toning it all down on Sunday.

"I definitely want to be respectful to the viewers at home," he explained. "I will still incorporate some of the storyline. It's a very cohesive story I've been telling throughout this era and throughout this year. The story will continue, but definitely will keep it PG for the families. I'll try my best."

"I don't like to spoon-feed the audience,” he continued. "Hopefully they can pick up some of their own theories and conclusions of what the show is saying and the story I'm telling from the performance."

The NFL championship game will be a matchup between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, whose home field is Raymond James Stadium. When asked if he has any plans to incorporate the stadium's massive pirate ship, The Weeknd replied, "That ship is so iconic."

"We're incorporating it just a little bit," he teased. "But, again, you'd have to watch it on Sunday."

As for being back in Tampa to perform? "I feel at home," The Weeknd exclaimed.

"My [previous] shows in Tampa, the crowd here is insane," he added. "They don't sing it back, they scream it back at you. It's such an experience. I love Tampa."

The Weeknd also shared that he's been watching plenty of other past Super Bowl halftime performances for inspiration, with his favorite being Diana Ross' show in 1996.

"I watched hers over and over again," he said. "It's mainly hers, yeah, but I loved Prince's, obviously. Michael Jackson, Beyoncé. They're all amazing, but Diana Ross was definitely my favorite performance."

While speaking to ET last month, Super Bowl executive producer Jesse Collins previously teased what fans could expect from the halftime show, with COVID-19 safety protocols in place.

"We're going to use the stadium to present the show in a way that it’s never been presented before," he shared. "Instead of focusing on what we can't do [due to the pandemic], it’s like, look at what the opportunities are because of the cards we've been dealt."

"He's got monster hits, and he really worked hard to make sure that they are presented in a way, in a Super Bowl halftime format, in a live way that's never been done before," he added. "The key word is 'live,' like, we didn't go pre-tape this... It's all happening in that stadium, in that moment."


Super Bowl LV airs live on CBS and Paramount+ on Sunday, Feb. 7. Kickoff is at 6:30 p.m. ET. Additionally, CBS Sports has a free live stream  to watch the Super Bowl, as well as the CBS Sports app on your mobile device. In the meantime, stay tuned right here to ETonline.com for more exclusive Super Bowl coverage coming your way before game day!

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