It looks like Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida, is filled to capacity for Super Bowl LV, but that’s not the case.
Only about 25,000 fans are in attendance. The other 30,000 seats are filled with cardboard cutouts of familiar faces like Eminem, Billie Eilish and Drake.
“So when you turn on the TV, you’ll look around. It won’t be a full capacity stadium,” said Peter O’Reilly, an NFL executive vice president.
“Sixty-five thousand seats will have about twenty five thousand people in here, about thirty thousand fan cutouts honoring some incredible people, some veterans and military personnel, health care workers as well, cancer survivors, youth and high school football players. So it’ll actually look full when you turn on the TV,” O’Reilly said.
Fans paid $100 to send a picture of themselves or a loved one to the NFL, to “be in attendance” at the game, according to CNN affiliate WFTS-TV. The league told the affiliate a portion of the proceeds will be donated to the nonprofit Feeding Tampa Bay.
This isn’t the first time the NFL has featured cutouts at games. The Denver Broncos featured cutouts of South Park characters during their game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in September.