Britney Spears won a major legal battle this week, after Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Brenda Penny agreed with the pop superstar that the ending of her conservatorship is long overdue. Las Vegas insiders wasted little time in spinning out rumors and rumblings regarding whether the 39-year-old might return to Southern Nevada for another casino residency.
Penny ruled Wednesday that the 13-year conservatorship held by Spears’ father James has more than run its course.
The current situation is untenable,” Penny ruled in the suspension of Mr. Spears’ control after hearing arguments from both sides. “It reflects a toxic environment.”
Spears’ fans, many of whom traveled to Los Angeles to stand outside the courthouse to show their support, delighted in the ruling. The #FreeBritney movement has captivated the entertainment world and has resulted in Britney holding the keys to deciding what’s next.
“The iron couldn’t be hotter to announce something,” John Kellogg, an entertainment lawyer, told The Wall Street Journal. “Nobody has gotten this amount of publicity in quite a while.”
Spears is one of the best-selling artists in the history of music. Since 1999, she’s sold nearly 34 million albums in the US alone.
Las Vegas Past
Britney Spears has a long history with Las Vegas. In January of 2004, she wed childhood friend Jason Alexander at A Little White Wedding Chapel, only to have the marriage annulled 55 hours later.
Spears launched her first Las Vegas casino residency in December of 2013 at Caesars Entertainment’s Planet Hollywood. The show was initially slated to run for two years, but hardy demand resulted in “Britney: Piece of Me” being extended through 2017.
Her Planet Hollywood residency ran close to 250 performances, grossing $138 million in the process. Spears was set to launch her second Strip residency in early 2019 — titled “Domination” — at MGM Resorts’ Park MGM. But Britney called off the show after her father suffered a nearly fatal colon rupture.
“I’m dedicating my focus and energy to care for my family,” Spears said at the time.
Residencies are big business for Strip casinos. It’s why the resorts pay A-listers mega bucks to call their properties home. According to the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA), visitors to the casino town spent $2.1 billion on concerts and shows in Las Vegas in 2019.
Landing Britney would be a major win for any Strip casino.
“Every casino in Vegas wants Britney Spears,” an entertainment insider told celebrity gossip site Radar. “She could literally have her pick of venue and name her price.”
Las Vegas Future
Spears later changed her tune regarding why she canned the Park MGM gig. She told the Los Angeles court in June of 2019 that it wasn’t so much about her father’s health that prompted her Las Vegas withdrawal.
I said, ‘I don’t want to do the residency.’ I was getting really nervous,” Spears testified of the Park MGM scheduled stint. “It was like lifting literally 200 pounds off of me when they said I don’t have to do the show anymore, because it was really, really hard on myself and it was too much. I couldn’t take it anymore.”
James Spears’ conservatorship of his daughter is expected to be fully revoked during a scheduled November 12 hearing. If that happens, Spears will once again have full control of her life, business, and money.
What she’ll do — and whether those plans might include another Vegas residency — only Spears knows.
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