Like a hip-hop Voltron, the superstar crew slated to take the field on Feb. 13 for the Super Bowl LVI halftime show came together on Thursday morning (Jan. 20) in a sneak preview short of their eagerly anticipated performance dubbed,”The Call.” The nearly four-minute short was shot by director F. Gary Gray (The Fate of the Furious, Straight Outta Compton) and it follows Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Eminem, Mary J. Blige and Kendrick Lamar as they assemble for the big day.
The dramatic clip opens with an unseen hand moving enormous golden chess pieces on an oversized board that rumbles to life in the form of the Los Angeles skyline before slipping underground into a studio bunker. That’s where present day dark-haired Eminem is moving the lyrics to “Rap God” around in the air, Minority Report-style, while early career bleach blonde Slim Shady does the same right across from him with the lyrics to “The Real Slim Shady.”
As the two sides of the rapper’s persona sling words at each other a phone buzzes and Slim fades away as a shocked-looking Em stares in disbelief at the message that makes him immediately hop on a plane. As the flight lands, we zoom in on Snoop cruising down the highway in his candy paint lowrider to the strains of “The Next Episode” as his crew bounce and tilt all around him in a classic car caravan.
Snoop appears to get a similar bat signal that causes him to run up on two wheels and pull a U-turn, with Mary clearly getting the same message during a high-fashion photo shoot cued to her “Family Affair.” The unseen hand continues to make big chess moves while Kendrick toils away on new lyrics, filling the air with dozens of pages as “HUMBLE” pumps out of the speakers.
The final piece of the puzzle comes together when we spot Dre walking along the beach to “Still D.R.E.” alongside crashing surf that transforms into a gigantic piano playing the song’s iconic minor-key keyboard riff. With all the pieces in place, the chess master — c’mon, you knew it was Dre — stares straight into the camera with a slight smirk.
The preview ends with the superfriends assembling on a dark street at night as they slow walk to SoFi Stadium, the site of the big game, which will air on NBC and stream on Peacock. The show, put together in partnership with the NFL, Pepsi and Roc Nation, will mark the first time that all five superstars grace the stage together.
Watch “The Call” below.