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'Tiger King' Star Doc Antle Calls Britney Spears 'Darling' After Working Together At 2001 VMAs

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By Whitney Vasquez

"Tiger King" star Doc Antle is opening up about his experience working with Britney Spears for her epic snake performance during the 2001 VMAs. Arguably the best show the "I'm a Slave For You" star has ever put on, fans were shocked to learn the controversial Netflix star was in the beloved performance too. Britney Spears opened the scene appearing with Doc Antle and his liger (a hybrid of lion father and tiger mother) in a cage before storming out on the stage holding a live python.

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Doc & Britney On The Stage Together:

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A picture of the two quickly went viral, with Britney Army going wild that the pop princess was once connected to the tiger owner. Even Zoë Kravitz and Hailey Bieber lost it over the throwback snap.

Speaking to Entertainment Tonight about the time he spent with Britney Spears, Doc Antle -- who is prominent in the shocking seven-part Netflix documentary -- recalls the singer being "such a darling" to work with. “She was totally just a fantastic person wanting a perfect performance,” he told the outlet. Antle recalled Britney Spears not being the only person rehearsing for hours on end to make sure the performance went perfectly. He also spent “several days rehearsing so that the tigers would be relaxed and happy" so that “everything could be smooth and taken care of as best as possible.”

He Wasn't Worried About His Tiger:

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Not only did Doc Antle say the "Oops!... I Did It Again" singer was a "darling," he also said she was the "sweetest." Continuing to talk about his experience with the pop star, he added, “[Spears] was there rehearsing and working — just the hardest working, sweetest young girl, out there making all the pieces click together." He went on to address the danger of having his animal so close to Britney Spears, saying he had "total confidence" in the tiger.

“I knew him since he was a baby," Doc Antle told ET. “He’s about seven years old right there. That’s the tiger that you go somewhere like that with because he cares less about the fireworks, the gas explosions, the banging music. He’s totally concerned with just holding his own and being cool.”

Britney Loved The Tiger Too:

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Britney Spears wasn't worried about the tiger either. In fact, the Netflix star said that she felt comfortable around the animal. “She petted him and was hugging on him and hanging out there with him,” he remembered, “he just thought Britney was one more friend.” While Doc Antle believes Britney Spears enjoyed her time with his tiger, he doesn't expect her to show up at his exotic animal park, Myrtle Beach Safari, in South Carolina anytime soon. "Right now, I’m sure with the Hollywood vibe, she’d be afraid that it’s on fire with all of this crazy salacious, insanity that has been made into Tiger King,” he said.

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