Regardless of whether the NFL did or didn’t instruct Lady Gaga to avoid making any political statements during the Sunday’s halftime show, FOX will be able to silence her if she chooses to inject a little First Amendment into the Fifty-first Super Bowl.
Via Michael McCarthy of Sporting News, FOX will employ a five-second delay during the pregame and halftime shows. It’s unclear whether FOX will be hoping to avoid a wardrobe malfunction or a political statement; McCarthy points to mounting speculation that Lady Gaga or pregame performers from Hamilton will choose to express their views regarding the travel ban or other political issues.
During a pre-Super Bowl press conference, Lady Gaga said that her halftime show will celebrate “inclusion” and “equality.”
Apart from the existence of a delay and the parameters for its use, it’s safe to assume that the contracts signed by the talent performing before and during the Super Bowl contain clear language about what can and can’t be done, with stiff financial penalties that automatically attach in the event of a breach.