Justin Timberlake could finally break his silence on Britney Spears’ memoir, with sources claiming music producer Timbaland is pushing for the singer to address the fallout in a new song.
Britney’s tell-all book, The Woman In Me, painted a scathing portrait of Justin, now 42, with the pop princess claiming that the NSYNC star urged her to have an abortion because he ‘wasn’t ready’ to be a father, serially cheated on her, and spun a narrative that she was ‘a harlot who’d broken the heart of America’s golden boy’ when they split.
It was previously reported that Justin wanted to refrain from speaking out on the explosive allegations so as not to ‘get in the way’ of Britney’s chance to finally share her story.
But now, insiders claim Justin’s longtime collaborator Timbaland – real name Timothy Zachery Mosley – is trying to get Justin into the studio to write a song in ‘response to all the haters’.
‘Justin is his great friend and Tim is going to protect that relationship at all costs,’ they told DailyMail.com exclusively. ‘Everyone jumps to all sorts of conclusions immediately, and Justin is an easy target right now.’
They continued: ‘Timbaland actually wants to use all this energy and get Justin in the studio to write a song about it all, to give his response to all the haters.
‘They have been writing for a while and have many songs for Justin’s next album, but Timbaland has seen what these last few weeks have turned into and wants to get Justin to let his creative juices flow and make a song that will react to everything and also be a complete banger.’
Justin has collaborated with Timbaland, 51, on all five of his studio albums, with the pair teaming up for a sixth time for his next release which will drop ‘top of next year’.
A separate source previously told DailyMail.com that Justin was planning to retain an air of silence in the wake of the book release, despite reportedly having qualms with Britney divulging details about the abortion.
‘Justin thought that the decision that they made was a decision made together and he intended to never talk about it and for it to be kept their secret forever,’ the source said.
‘Now that Britney has mentioned it, and it will live forever in her book and whatever else she decides to mention, Justin is going to try not to say anything about it because he knows whatever he says from this point will likely be thrown back right at him.’
Timbaland voiced his displeasure about the blowback mounted against Justin, who he has collaborated with for two decades, telling the SexyBack singer to ‘muzzle’ his ex-girlfriend.
Speaking about the memoir with fellow producer 9th Wonder, he said: ‘I wanted to call and say, “JT, you gotta put a muzzle on that girl!”‘
His comment sparked a backlash, prompting him to issue a live apology ‘to all the Britney fans, even to her’ on TikTok on Tuesday.
Addressing Britney directly, he said: ‘You have a voice. You speak what you wanna speak. Who am I to tell you what not to speak?’
Timbaland continued: ‘And I was wrong, you know, for saying that, but I hope you see it from – I was looking at it from a different lens, and what I am is a reconcile person. I’m not a person who takes sides.’
‘Let’s make a compromise. “I see your point. Do you see his point?” You know, can we all get to agreement to say this is that and that’s this? That’s just how I am, so I apologize to the Britney fans and her.’
In response to the sexism allegations he got for the ‘muzzle’ line, he added: ‘And, uh, yes, you know, about respecting women, hell yeah.’
Timbaland’s comments appeared to have irked Madonna, as some of her fans noticed that she appeared to have unfollowed him at some point, though it is unclear when.
The couple dated from 1999 until 2002 when their split was announced to increasing rumors that Britney had been unfaithful.
Justin appeared to bolster the narrative with his 2002 hit Cry Me a River in which he sings: ‘You don’t have to say, what you did / I already know, I found out from him / Now there’s just no chance / For you and me.’
The singer even went so far as to hire a Britney look-a-like for the music video.
Britney wrote about that period in time in her book, describing the Cry Me A River video as ‘a woman who looks like me cheats on him and he wanders around sad in the rain’.
She also revealed the media attention the video got turned her into a ‘harlot who’d broken the heart of America’s golden boy,’ when she was actually ‘comatose in Louisiana’ nursing a broken heart while Justin was ‘happily running around Hollywood’.
The mother-of-two has confessed to cheating on her ex by kissing her choreographer Wade Robson in a bar – but she also hinted that Justin was unfaithful on multiple occasions – including with a celebrity whose identity she has refrained from exposing.
She wrote that the What Goes Around Comes Around hitmaker was photographed with ‘one of the girls from All Saints’ in London in 2000 and also bragged to one of her backup dancers about a girl he hooked up with in Las Vegas.
In the years following their breakup, Justin was not very kind when it came to speaking about their past relationship.
During a 2003 interview with Barbara Walters on 20/20, the legendary journalist asked him if Britney had ‘kept her promise to wait to have sex until marriage’. Justin immediately burst out laughing.
A few years later, in 2006, he told journalist Robert Haskell: ‘If I was writing an article about [Britney], I would not be able to fight the urge to write every dirty thing about her.’
In recent years, Justin has shown regret for his past treatment of Britney and publicly apologized to her in 2021 following the release of the FX and Hulu documentary, Framing Britney Spears.
He issued an apology to both his ex – and music icon Janet Jackson – for ‘missteps’ during his career that he admitted contributed to ‘a system that condones misogyny and racism’.
‘I’ve seen the messages, tags, comments and concerns and I want to respond,’ he wrote. ‘I am deeply sorry for the times in my life where my actions contributed to the problem, where I spoke out of turn, or did not speak up for what was right.’
Months later, he went on to show support for Britney amid her battle to put her 13-year conservatorship to an end. She was placed into the guardianship by her father, Jamie Spears, in 2008.
At the height of the #FreeBritney movement, Justin tweeted: ‘No one should ever be held against their will… or ever have to ask permission to access everything they’ve worked so hard for.’
Speaking on behalf of himself and his wife, Jessica, he then added: ‘Jess and I send our love, and our absolute support to Britney during this time. We hope the courts, and her family make this right and let her live however she wants to live.’