The Secret Story Of How The ‘NSYNC VMA Reunion Came Together

'It really was about [Justin Timberlake] and all that he's accomplished,' JC Chasez tells Ryan Seacrest of band's performance.

It was the reunion seen ’round the world. ‘NSYNC played the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards on Sunday night, prompting everyone from Wiz Khalifa and Birdman to basically the entire Internet to react with excited glee.

The fivesome took the stage at the VMAs to pay homage to Justin Timberlake, who was being honored with the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award . And while the ‘NSYNC reunion was what JC Chasez calls “the worst-kept secret ever,” he called into Ryan Seacrest’s radio show on Monday to explain how it all came together.

“You know, it was a matter of time. Everybody would ask us, ‘When are you guys going to do something?’ ” he said hours after the performance. “Literally just a few days ago Justin gave me a buzz. And he said, ‘Hey man, listen. I’m getting this award and they have given me a pile of time to perform, and we started our careers at MTV and I think we should get the band back together.’ We did just for a minute, though. It really was about him and all that he’s accomplished, but he wanted to acknowledge that part of his career, so we all decided to do it.”

According to Chasez, it was Timberlake, who also won the award for Video of the Year at the broadcast, who wanted to keep the reunion under wraps before it went live from Brooklyn’s Barclays Center.

“When J called me, he’s like, ‘Let’s really make it a treat and let’s not tell anybody,’ and I was like, ‘Deal.’ I didn’t tell anyone. I was lying to people. Look, if only six or seven people know, nobody’s going to be able to find out,” he recalled. “I don’t know if there are cameras in the ceiling or whatever, but it was unbelievable … we were in rehearsal and Lance [Bass] walked in and said, ‘Well, everybody knows now’ and there was some kind of Twitter feed and we were like, ‘How in the world did they figure it out?!’ ”

So did it feel like old times after a decade spent apart ? “Literally, two minutes after seeing everybody you feel like no time has passed,” said Chasez, who told MTV News in 2009 that he didn’t think there would ever be a reunion .

“Essentially everybody has remained the same and we all see each other at different times, but this was the first time we had a rehearsal together in 10 years, so everyone was going, ‘Can we go through this one more time slowly?’ So that part was pretty funny,” he added. “It was great for laughs and we hoped that people enjoyed it.”