UPDATE: “Womanizer” is a hit. The song jumped a record-breaking 95 spots this week to top Billboard’s Hot 100 singles list. This is Britney’s first number one single since 1999’s “Baby One More Time,” which we find shocking. Nonetheless, she owes much of “Womanizer’s” swagger up the charts to the track’s also record-shattering digital downloads.
Billboard: Spears’ single is spurred by first-week download sales of 286,000, the biggest opening-week tally by a female artist since Nielsen SoundScan began tracking digital downloads in 2003, besting Mariah Carey’s take for “Touch My Body” by just over 200 units.
UPDATE: Britney did premiere her “Womanizer” video on 20/20, but some of the clip’s scenes, like the ones in which she’s naked, were too hot for ABC. Ah, that’s the problem with debuting a music video on network TV.
So it’s no surprise that the “director’s cut” version, featuring Britney in the buff, has become an Internet sensation. MTV, which has been promoting the clip on its homepage, has already received more than 800,000 views of the video, while various versions on YouTube have received as many as 45,000 plays.
You could say this was a flaw in Britney’s plan, but she’s no fool. She knew 20/20 wouldn’t be able to show as much as MTV, which means Britney found a way to get people who saw the clip on 20/20 to check it out online and keep MTV in the music-video game. Oh, Britney, don’t try to front, we know just what you are.
EARLIER: We knew that Britney Spears was back last month when she stormed the VMAs looking like her old (read: good) self, but that was just the first step in the relaunch of Britney the brand. In doing this, Britney’s made a number of calculated moves that illustrate the same sort of media control she used to have before she lost control—and her hair—and let the media control her.
Britney’s new single “Womanizer” hit radio two weeks ago and shot to the top of iTunes most downloaded songs list after it became available on Tuesday.
The video premieres on 20/20 tonight in a bizarrely anachronistic move that’s also somewhat unsurprising since Britney’s career is so connected to her personal life.
Meanwhile, Britney’s re-emergence will also include a documentary, For the Record, which has been shooting for the past month or so. In it, Britney will presumably explain what she was thinking during her tabloid exploits of the past few years. It’s an effort to reclaim control of her brand that’s classic Britney Spears.
“So much has gone on over the last couple of years and there’s a lot that people don’t know about me that I want them to know.” said Britney [in the press release announcing For the Record] “I wanted to make this film because I started to feel like I wasn’t being seen in the light that I wanted to be seen in. This is an opportunity to set the record straight and talk about what I’ve been through and where I’m headed.”
Manipulating the media one more time. That’s our Britney Spears!
Britney’s 90-minute special will air on Sunday, November 30 further cementing the music industry’s takeover of the Thanksgiving holiday. (Trailer embedded below.)
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