“Overprotected” video director recalls encouraging Britney to go on after Justin’s breakup text

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As Britney Spears details in her memoir, The Woman In Me, Justin Timberlake broke up with her via text while she was on the set of her video for “Overprotected.”

“After seeing the message as I sat in my trailer in between takes,” she writes. “I had to go back out and dance.” Now, we know what the message said — and why she went back out to dance.

ABC News has posted an advance clip for a new Britney-focused episode of Impact X Nightline, streaming on Hulu November 2. In the clip, “Overprotected” video director Chris Applebaum recalls going to get Britney for the next take that day.

“I walk into her trailer, and Britney’s not dressed for the next scene. She’s not ready, her hair and makeup isn’t ready. She’s still in a Juicy Couture sweatsuit, and I could immediately tell something was wrong,” Applebaum remembers.

“I asked her if everything was O.K., and she said, ‘No, things are not O.K,. because look,’ and she held out her flip phone and I saw this text which said, ‘It’s over.’”

Applebaum said he was ready to call off the shoot, but first, he said to Britney, “If you feel like you wanna get out there and show him that he just lost the best thing that he ever had, let’s do it.”

His pep talk worked: Applebaum says, “Ten to 15 minutes later, she came out and she was on fire. This was the Britney that everybody knows and loves.”

“Overprotected,” from Britney’s 2001 self-titled album, earned her a Grammy nomination for Best Female Pop Vocal performance.

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