Is there still hope? The internet has come up with a new conspiracy theory that Justin Timberlake still loves his ex-girlfriend Britney Spears 14 years after their split.
According to some very creative social media users, the “Can’t Stop the Feeling!” crooner, 35, made a very telling face during a May 2016 interview with Anna Kendrick while the pair were promoting their animated movie, Trolls, at the Cannes Film Festival in the South of France.
Around the 2:10 mark in the clip above, Timberlake — happy husband of Jessica Biel, with whom he shares son Silas, 15 months — is all smiles before the reporter mentions the word pinky. As soon as the word registers with the singer-actor, a nerve appears to be hit as his expression immediately transforms from joyful to dejected. He looks legitimately forlorn and brokenhearted for nearly a full 30 seconds before recovering.
As JT and Spears shippers are well aware, “Pinky” was the nickname that the former boy-bander gave the pop princess during their three-year romance. The “Make Me …” songstress, now 34, affectionately called her then-beau “Stinky.”
The pair sported their pet names for each other on the back of matching jerseys during a charity basketball game in 2001 — a moment that some believe flashed through Timberlake’s mind as he looked utterly distraught during his and Kendrick’s chat about Trolls.
Spears and Timberlake — one of the most cherished celebrity couples of the early aughts — began dating in 1999, but pulled the plug on their relationship in 2002 amid reports that the “I’m a Slave 4 U” songstress cheated on her man with choreographer Wade Robson.
Despite their tainted past, both parties have seemingly moved on from the drama. Appeasing nostalgia-loving hearts everywhere, the blonde beauty and the eternal heartthrob have recently expressed that they wouldn’t mind recording a duet together.
Spears, who first teamed up with Timberlake on her 2001 track “What It’s Like to Be Me” from her third studio album, Britney — he cowrote the tune and sang background vocals — told fans during a Q&A late last month that she’d like to work with her ex again.
“Aerosmith [frontman Steven Tyler] seems really good and bright. He’s a genius, I think. He’s very rock ’n’ roll. He sings from his soul. Gwen Stefani, I think she’s great,” she said on August 27, listing her dream collaborators. “Justin Timberlake is very good.”
When the ‘NSync alum heard of Spears’ sweet sentiment, he surprisingly revealed he’s on board to join forces once more. “She did? Sure!” he told E! News on September 13. “Absolutely, absolutely.”
He added, “I apologize for not being in the know … I’m accessible, give us a call!”