This time next week — Tuesday, Sept. 17 — we will finally know officially that pop princess Britney Spears will start a two-year residency of 60 alternating-weekend, 90-minute spectaculars at PH Live in Planet Hollywood.
Naturally, Caesars Entertainment execs and Britney’s management and record companies have wrapped the week-away announcement in secrecy to get maximum promotional coverage out of the reveal.
Mystery and many unanswered questions, however, still surround next Tuesday’s timetable:
• Will Britney be in New York early morning and then fly directly to Las Vegas for the afternoon’s huge promotional stunt being planned here?
• Will Britney satellite a live early morning TV feed from Las Vegas?
• Just how far into the desert surrounding Las Vegas might we have to travel to witness the Britney publicity exploits?
Britney herself fueled the biggest question: Is she already here in total secrecy? “It’s HOT out here, people. Gonna get my tan on in the desert in between shots on the WORK BITCH set today,” she tweeted Sunday afternoon.
Trying to break through all of the top-secret plans for next Tuesday is almost an impossibility, but with the help of some crystal-ball predictions, background off-the-record insiders, educated guesses and my own hunches, we’ve learned the following:
• Her own self-imposed countdown on BritneySpears.com comes to an end on Sept. 17, confirming that big surprises are definitely in store that day.
• Her website will show ticketing, seat preferences and event info that day.
• Britney will appear live on ABC’s “Good Morning America.” She’ll reveal her new eighth studio album with producer and songwriters Will.I.Am of the Black Eyed Peas, Sia, Naughty Boy, Charlie XCX, Madonna’s producer William Orbit and a reteaming with Danja from her album “Blackout.”
• The pop diva will perform one and possibly two tracks from the album, including “Work Bitch.” Britney will then confirm the new residency at Planet Hollywood and reveal show dates and hopefully the on-sale date of ticketing, which also will be confirmed by Caesars Entertainment later that day.
• Hotel employees, sworn to secrecy, have already been “invited” to Britney’s appearance Tuesday in Las Vegas to help boost excitement.
• Media invitations will be a last-minute feat in order to minimize reporters’ spoiler stories.
• The nearly $20 million makeover for the Theater for the Performing Arts turned PH Live theater to house Britney’s show is correct, as is the reduction to 4,500 seats. It will give a more intimate and close-up experience, similar to Celine Dion at the Colosseum in Caesars Palace. Construction began July 16.
• We know that she’s acquired a partnership interest in the new Meatball Spot restaurant that’s opening in late November or early December next door to her Miracle Mile showroom to coincide with her new show's grand opening. (Meatball Spot recently closed at Town Square.)
• We know that she has been rehearsing, dancing and working out for the show and the new album all summer.
Over the weekend, she tweeted photos from video filming to show how “fierce, toned and trim” she’s looking after all the Olympic-styled yoga fitness training. “Dirty, little flirty, danced my ass off,” she said after a Thousand Oaks, Calif., dance studio session.
• We know that Britney has already described her new album and show as “my most personal ever.” It may well be titled “All Eyes On Me,” as Will.I.Am says he encouraged her to display her new independent style and side after her engagement to ex-manager Jason Trawick ended and she became single again.
Earlier, I was told: “She is ready and raring to go.” One of her closest friends, sworn to secrecy, also confided to me: “We are very, very close to it now. You have been right all along as all the negotiations worked out. Now the big moment has arrived.”
Another confidante summed up best: “She’s so excited to perform and show what great shape she is in now. She is mentally and physically 100 percent ready for the Las Vegas shows.”
YOU BETTA WERK BRIT!