The Weeknd Reveals Why He's Choosing to Perform Solo at the Super Bowl

With an album like After Hours, does he really need a guest act?

ICYMI: the Weeknd's concert—otherwise known as the Super Bowl (opens in new tab)—is on February 7. The half-time show is bound to be legendary, judging by his latest music videos for songs like "Heartless," "Blinding Lights," "In Your Eyes," and "Too Late." The videos depict a continuous storyline that explains why he attended events like the American Music Awards (opens in new tab) and the Video Music Awards (opens in new tab) with a bloodied and damaged face (more on that later). There have been rumors swirling that he will include a guest performer similar to artists in recent years like Shakira with J.Lo and Beyoncé with Coldplay.

"I've been reading a lot of rumors. I wouldn't bet on it," he told the NFL Network (opens in new tab), explaining why he'll have a solo performance. "There wasn't any room to fit it in the narrative and the story I was telling in the performance. So there's no special guests, no."

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The "narrative" that he's speaking about is the story he told through his recent songs and music videos. He appears with a bloody face, bandages, and prosthetics. "It was a way to embody his music. "This is strictly performance art,” a source told Us Weekly (opens in new tab). “The Weeknd is wearing prosthetics as part of the character he’s been playing since November 2019 when he launched the After Hours era.”

The Weeknd clarified how the storyline begins with "Blinding Lights" in a September cover story for Esquire (opens in new tab). "‘Blinding Lights’ [is about] how you want to see someone at night, and you’re intoxicated, and you’re driving to this person and you’re just blinded by streetlights,” he explained. “But nothing could stop you from trying to go see that person, because you’re so lonely. I don’t want to ever promote drunk driving, but that’s what the dark undertone is."

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Paulina is the Weekend Editor at Cosmopolitan.com. When she isn’t covering celeb and pop culture news, she can be found listening to Taylor Swift, watching a teen drama (One Tree Hill is her favorite), or perfecting her skincare routine.