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Britney Spears: A Life in Photos

Follow the star’s rise, fall and comeback


Britney Spears' Life in Photos


Britney Jean Spears was born on December 2, 1981 in the small town of Kentwood, Louisiana (population 2,200). Her mother, Lynne, devoted herself to nurturing her eldest daughter's talent from the time Britney was three. Her father, Jamie, had a drinking problem that magnified as his construction business faced a downturn.


Matthew Peyton

Partying with Natalie Portman (2002)

Spears spent her first New Year's Eve sans Timberlake with actress Natalie Portman; the two hosted a party at New York's Hudson Hotel on December 31, 2002.



Flirting with Colin Farrell (2003)

As Spears became increasingly disillusioned with the music industry, she turned her focus to her social life, seeking love from Hollywood bad boys such as Colin Farrell. Here, the two attend the premiere of The Recruit in Hollywood on January 28, 2003. Around this time, Spears also had a fling with Fred Durst, which the Limp Bizkit rapper bragged about on The Howard Stern Show.


Mel Bouzad

Plagued by Paparazzi (2003)

Spears exits the drive-thru window of a Hollywood In-N-Out Burger on February 27, 2003. Paparazzi photographs of the singer at fast-food restaurants soon became a thriving industry.


Frank Micelotta

Nickelodeon’s 16th Annual Kids’ Choice Awards (2003)

Spears hugs younger sister Jamie Lynn at Nickelodeon's 16th Annual Kids' Choice Awards on April 12, 2003, in Santa Monica, California. The younger Spears began appearing on Nick TV shows in 2002 but didn't score true fame (and infamy) until late 2007, when she revealed that she was pregnant at age 16.


Splash News

Page Six Staple (2003)

Spears demonstrates her feelings toward tabloids and celebrity coverage by rocking a Page Six Six Six shirt at an MTV party in Hollywood on June 28, 2003.



MTV Video Music Awards (2003)

Spears performs with Christina Aguilera and Madonna – Britney's future "Me Against the Music" collaborator – at the MTV Video Music Awards in New York on August 28, 2003. The threesome (plus Missy Elliott) performed Madonna's "Like a Virgin" and "Hollywood."



Lip-Lock with Madonna (2003)

Spears' 2003 VMAs performance became famous for its two brief kisses. When Madonna lip-locked with Spears, the camera instantly cut to Timberlake for a reaction shot, forcing Aguilera's similar kiss to lose most of its airtime. After the awards, Spears decided that she and Madonna were soul mates and began to look to the elder pop superstar for advice.


Frank Micelotta

‘NFL Kickoff Live’ (2003)

Spears performs at the NFL Kickoff Live from the National Mall special in Washington, DC, on September 4, 2003.



Pepsi ‘We Will Rock You’ Campaign (2003)

Spears poses with Queen's Roger Taylor and Brian May while filming the Pepsi "We Will Rock You" gladiator commercial in Rome on September 22, 2003. The flashy clip also starred Beyoncé, Pink and Enrique Iglesias.