Published: Mon, September 10, 2018
Life&Culture | By Peggy Hughes

CBS’ Les Moonves Sabotaged Janet Jackson’s Career Following Super Bowl Wardrobe Malfunction

CBS’ Les Moonves Sabotaged Janet Jackson’s Career Following Super Bowl Wardrobe Malfunction

The scandal-scarred entertainment exec had it out for Jackson ever since 2004, when Justin Timberlake exposed her breast to some 100 million fans in a supposed wardrobe malfunction during the half-time show.

If an agreement is reached, Joe Ianniello, CBS chief operating officer, would take over as interim CEO until the company names a successor to Moonves, according to the Wall Street Journal.

And for the 2004 Grammies, which CBS broadcast, Moonves initially banned both Jackson and Timberlake from appearing, though he later allowed Timberlake to perform after Timberlake offered a tearful apology.

CBS chief executive Les Moonves was reportedly so enraged by Janet Jackson's Super Bowl wardrobe malfunction that he tried to destroy her career.

During the 2004 Super Bowl halftime show, Justin Timberlake ripped away Janet Jackson's top and briefly exposed her breast to a very big television audience.

The incident drew a torrent of criticism from America's pearl-clutchers, who were just scandalized at the revelation that women have nipples, and earned CBS a $550,000 fine from the Federal Communications Commission. CBS said it would investigate the claims, which Moonves portrayed as "advances", added in a statement that he "never misused my position to harm or hinder anyone's career". "Moonves has been open about the fact that the incident caused him embarrassment, and he told sources who spoke to me that Jackson, in his mind, was not sufficiently repentant". "The fallout from the incident inflicted significant damage on Jackson's career ― which until that point had produced 10 No. 1 hits ― and still reverberates to this day", the report states. Another person close to the situation reports that the CEO said that "heads were going to roll" at Simon & Schuster.

"How the fuck did she slip through?" he reportedly told one of the people who interviewed with HuffPost.

CBS has appointed two law firms to investigate Moonves for sexual misconduct allegations stemming from a July New Yorker article. Moonves is now facing sexual harassment allegations.

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