Britney Spears 55 Hour Marriage, Ten years ago today, Britney Spears decamped to Las Vegas with her childhood friend Jason Allen Alexander, and like so many love-drunk (and possibly other kinds of inebriated) young people, decided to get hitched. Perhaps realizing her poor judgment, Spears had the marriage annulled a mere 55 hours later, but the whirlwind romance remains one of the most thrillingly sudsy stories of the pop starlet’s peak years.
Now, as she’s back in Las Vegas for her two-year Planet Hollywood Piece of Me residency, she’s the topic of conversation in Sin City for other, less paparazzi-worthy reasons — but the sheer weirdness and starry-eyed lunacy of the wedding remains an indelible part of Spears lore.
Here now, an authoritative and eyewitness account of the short-lived Spears-Alexander marriage:
Wednesday, December 31st
In town for New Year’s Eve, Britney Spears parties hard at both Rain and Ghostbar at the Palms, at one point crossing paths with Kobe and Vanessa Bryant. Later, she returns to her room in the Palms’ famed Real World Suite. She’s registered at the hotel under the name Alotta Warmheart.
Thursday, January 1st
During prime party hours, Spears hits the dance floor at Rain, where she is seen grooving with a number of other guests — including her childhood friend, Kentwood, Louisiana, native Jason Alexander, who Spears had had flown in to Las Vegas via private jet earlier that day. She was also also seen at the club in the VIP section kissing one of her female backup dancers.
Friday, January 2nd
Spears and friends go see an evening screening of the Julia Roberts’ flick Mona Lisa Smile, then head back to the Palms and Ghostbar.
Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images
Saturday, January 3rd
After midnight, Spears and Alexander retreat to her suite at the hotel, where they watch The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Somehow feeling romantically inspired, the pair decide to marry.
“It was just so crazy, man,” Alexander later told Access Hollywood. “We were just looking at each other and said, ‘Let’s do something wild, crazy. Let’s go get married, just for the hell of it.'”
Around 3:30 a.m. Spears and Alexander rent a lime-green stretch limo and a Palms bellman drives them to the city’s A Little White Wedding Chapel, notorious for its quickie marriages.
“I guess the limousine driver got fired, because he had no business taking them out,” says Charolette Richards, owner of the chapel. “Beautiful gal — all I could tell you. She was one very beautiful lady and she was not drunk.”
(In a 2012 interview, Alexander said the two had been drinking and also indulged in “party favors.”)
Upon arrival at the chapel, the two are told they need a wedding license. Undeterred, they continue on to the Clark County Courthouse.
There, sometime near 4:30 a.m., Spears provides proof of her age and her social security number in order to purchase a marriage license. (340 other couples are issued marriage licenses in Las Vegas on the same day.)
“People followed them from the marriage license bureau,” recalls Richards. “Everyone was taking photographs of everyone.”
At approximately 5 a.m., Spears and Alexander return to the chapel, where they shell out $70 for a seven-minute ceremony. Spears wedding outfit consists of a baseball cap and torn jeans. The wedding march is played from a boombox as the bellman walks the bride down the aisle.
“They weren’t dressed in wedding attire, but it was very romantic and there was a feeling of love between them,” remembers Richards. “They appeared to be extremely happy. They were laughing, but crying, too, during the ceremony. I thought it was a marriage that would last forever.”