Britney’s Fall: The Never-Before-Seen Footage

Injury caught on tape by indie rock band shooting video nearby.

When Britney Spears fell down during a video shoot for “Outrageous” earlier this month, the impact was immediate.

Her fall has set off a chain of events that’s resulted in the cancellation of her summer tour — something insiders are estimating will cost her as much as $1 million a week in lost revenue from ticket and merchandise sales (see “Britney Busts Knee, Complicating Video Shoot And Tour” ).

But what of the fall itself? Still pictures from paparazzi showed a play-by-play of the incident but failed to capture the essence of the moment — the onset of injury, the expression on the singer’s face, her puzzled dancers’ reactions as they reached to give her a helping hand. However, MTV News has procured footage of the incident, which gives more of a sense of how sudden the injury was and how Spears reacted, through a local band shooting footage on the same street.

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Realizing that Spears was filming a music video two blocks away from where they share a house in the Woodside section of Queens, New York, the fledgling indie rock band Mo Matching Drapes grabbed a camera and took advantage of the unique situation, as well as the professional lighting, to have Britney seem to appear, however inadvertently, in their own video. “My girlfriend isn’t going to go to Woodside, let alone someone famous,” singer Chris Brunelle marveled about Britney’s appearance in his ‘hood. “We’re nobody, and she’s everybody.”

  Click for photos of Britney’s fall



Spears seemed to welcome neighborhood fans shooting her scenes, waving and smiling to those who gathered to watch, cameras in hand, Brunelle said. His main goal was to stage the shot so that he could have Spears dancing in the background and then pull back to show his bandmate Paul Bates in the foreground, lip-synching to their song “Running Away,” from their forthcoming second album, The Dangerous Friendly. Just as Spears continued to do takes of her dance scene, so did Brunelle and Bates. And when Brunelle yelled “Action!” for the last time, almost as if on cue, Spears turned and then fell, with an open-mouthed expression of surprise. From the footage, it appears that few seemed to understand the extent of her injury, until she was carried away by a bodyguard, unable to walk.

While the tour has been canceled (see “Britney Cancels Tour” ), there’s no word yet if her video for “Outrageous” will be scrapped as well, or what would be required to salvage the footage already shot.