In the 14 years since that video's premiere, Spears has continued to change the music-video game. Whether she's a catsuit-clad Martian queen ("Oops! ... I Did It Again") or sexy superspy ("Toxic"), Spears keeps fans guessing about how she might look in her next visual.
Spears' latest video, for will.i.am's "Scream & Shout," imagines her as a real-life GIF, director Ben Mor told MTV News, multiplied many times over for your viewing pleasure. And it's Spears' ability to embody whatever persona it is she's playing in a video that makes her Britney Spears.
"I mean, she's kind of an enigma. Every generation has their pop queen/icon, and I think she is just that person," Mor told MTV News. "Needless to say, her track record speaks for itself: her albums, her music, her iconic past videos and all the stuff she's done. She's earned her stripes. You're dealing with an institution."
Mor finally got the chance to work with spears on the "Scream & Shout" video, and he likened it to watching an animal in her natural habitat. When Spears hit the set, Mor said she just "lights up," ready for the scene. It's her professionalism that makes her so easy to work with.
"As far as what makes her that, I think it's a combination of, from the get-go, she has the pop triple threat. It's like sex appeal, beauty and catchy-as-hell pop songs, hits, global hits," he gushed. "And you don't need more than that."
And while some stars of Brit's stature may try and pull diva antics, the "X Factor" judge did anything but.
"I was very, very excited. Needless to say, I've always wanted to work with her and so completely looking forward to it, super stoked that I finally get to work with her," he said. "And she was absolutely super professional. [She] wasted no time, showed up before anybody else. [She] was spot on time, not a minute late. Her hair and makeup team, her glam team was amazing to work with. She did her thing. It was awesome to watch. She just lights up. The music kicks in, and it was just awesome. I can't say enough good things about her and her team. They were just awesome."