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February 21, 2012
Brazil Carnival 2012
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) -- As millions watched the sequin-clad samba dancers at Rio de Janeiro's iconic Carnival parade Sunday, at least a few eyes turned toward the stars, or at least toward the VIP boxes hosting celebrities such as Jennifer Lopez and Fergie.
The Carnival parade has been attracting top celebrities for much of its 80 years. Many are brought in by attention-hungry Brazilian advertisers hoping to share some of the glow of the world's biggest party.
This year, beer company Brahma was promoting Lopez, while hair care company Head and Shoulders hosted Fergie. Neither planned to actually parade in the all-night-long event, but J.Lo waved to the crowd from the posh VIP seats at the Sambadrome as 13 samba schools joined in a fierce, sweaty competition before tens of thousands inside and many more watching at home on television.

(57 images)



Dancers of Sao Clemente samba school parade on a float during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Monday Feb. 20, 2012. AP / Felipe Dana


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A dancer from the Mangueira samba school parades during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday Feb. 21, 2012. AP / Felipe Dana



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A dancer, right, performs on a float with a statue that resembles the Statue of Liberty during Sao Clemente samba school carnival parade at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Monday, Feb. 20, 2012. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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A dancer of Sao Clemente samba school parades on a float during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Monday, Feb. 20, 2012. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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A dancer of Mangueira samba school parades during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday Feb. 21, 2012. AP / Felipe Dana



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A dancer of Uniao da Ilha samba school parades during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Monday Feb. 20, 2012. AP / Felipe Dana



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The Grande Rio samba school parades during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday Feb. 21, 2012. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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A dancer of Grande Rio samba school parades on a float during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. Nearly 100,000 paying spectators turn out for the all-night spectacle at the Sambadrome. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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Dancers from the Mocidade samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Monday Feb. 20, 2012. AP / Felipe Dana



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Dancers of Grande Rio samba school parade on a float during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. Nearly 100,000 paying spectators turn out for the all-night spectacle at the Sambadrome. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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Dancers of Grande Rio samba school parade on a float during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. Nearly 100,000 paying spectators turn out for the all-night spectacle at the Sambadrome. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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A performer from the Grande Rio samba school parades during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb.21, 2012. Nearly 100,000 paying spectators turn out for the all-night spectacle at the Sambadrome. AP / Felipe Dana



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Performers from the Unidos da Tijuca samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb.21, 2012. Nearly 100,000 paying spectators turn out for the all-night spectacle at the Sambadrome. AP / Felipe Dana



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Performers from the Sao Clemente samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Monday, Feb. 20, 2012. AP / Silvia Izquierdo



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Performers from the Salgueiro samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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Dancers of Grande Rio samba school parade on a float during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. Nearly 100,000 paying spectators turn out for the all-night spectacle at the Sambadrome. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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A dancer of Mangueira samba school waves from atop a float during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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Performers from the Uniao da Ilha samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. AP / Silvia Izquierdo



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Dancers of Grande Rio samba school parade on a float during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. Nearly 100,000 paying spectators turn out for the all-night spectacle at the Sambadrome. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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Performers from the Grande Rio samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb.21, 2012. Nearly 100,000 paying spectators turn out for the all-night spectacle at the Sambadrome. AP / Felipe Dana



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Performers from the Grande Rio samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb.21, 2012. Nearly 100,000 paying spectators turn out for the all-night spectacle at the Sambadrome. AP / Felipe Dana



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Dancers of Salgueiro samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Monday Feb. 20, 2012. AP / Felipe Dana



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A dancer of Grande Rio samba school parades during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. Nearly 100,000 paying spectators turn out for the all-night spectacle at the Sambadrome. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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A performer from the Grande Rio samba school parades during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb.21, 2012. Nearly 100,000 paying spectators turn out for the all-night spectacle at the Sambadrome. AP / Felipe Dana



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Performers from the Salgueiro samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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Performers from the Salgueiro samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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Dancers of Mangueira samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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Performers from the Unidos da Tijuca samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb.21, 2012. Nearly 100,000 paying spectators turn out for the all-night spectacle at the Sambadrome. AP / Felipe Dana



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A dancer of Sao Clemente samba school parades on a float during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Monday Feb. 20, 2012. AP / Felipe Dana



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Dancers of Unidos da Tijuca samba school parade on a float during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. Nearly 100,000 paying spectators turn out for the all-night spectacle at the Sambadrome. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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Dancers from the Uniao da Ilha samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. AP / Silvia Izquierdo



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Dancers of Mangueira samba school parade on a float during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday Feb. 21, 2012. AP / Felipe Dana



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A performer parades atop a float of Unidos da Tijuca samba school during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. Nearly 100,000 paying spectators turn out for the all-night spectacle at the Sambadrome. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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Dancers of Porto da Pedra samba school parade on a float during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Monday Feb. 20, 2012. AP / Felipe Dana



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Drum queen Renata Santos, front, of Mangueira samba school parades during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday Feb. 21, 2012. AP / Felipe Dana



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Samba school ' Sao Clemente' during the second day of parade at the sambodromo of the Rio de Janeiro Carnival on Monday, Feb. 20, 2012. ZUMA24.com / Marcelo Say



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Performers from the Unidos da Tijuca samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. Nearly 100,000 paying spectators turn out for the all-night spectacle at the Sambadrome. AP / Felipe Dana



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Mangueira samba school parades during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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Performers from the Salgueiro samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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Performers from the Sao Clemente samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Monday, Feb. 20, 2012. AP / Silvia Izquierdo



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A dancers of Unidos da Tijuca samba school parades during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. Nearly 100,000 paying spectators turn out for the all-night spectacle at the Sambadrome. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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Dancers of Sao Clemente samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Monday Feb. 20, 2012. AP / Felipe Dana



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Performers from the Unidos da Tijuca samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb.21, 2012. Nearly 100,000 paying spectators turn out for the all-night spectacle at the Sambadrome. AP / Felipe Dana



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Dancers of Mangueira samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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Performers from the Sao Clemente samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Monday, Feb. 20, 2012. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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Dancers of Salgueiro samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Monday Feb. 20, 2012. AP / Felipe Dana



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Mangueira samba school parades during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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Performers from the Grande Rio samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb.21, 2012. AP / Felipe Dana



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Mangueira samba school parades during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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Dancers of Salgueiro samba school parade on a float during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Monday Feb. 20, 2012. AP / Felipe Dana



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Mangueira samba school parades during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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A performer from the Grande Rio samba school parades during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb.21, 2012. AP / Felipe Dana



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A performer sits inside a capsule held to a float during Mangueira samba school carnival parade at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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Performers from the Unidos da Vila Isabel samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Monday, Feb.20, 2012. Millions watched the sequin-clad samba dancers at Rio de Janeiro's iconic Carnival parade. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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Performers from the Unidos da Vila Isabel samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Monday, Feb.20, 2012. AP / Victor R. Caivano



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Performers from the Grande Rio samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Feb.21, 2012. AP / Felipe Dana



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Feb. 20, 2012 - Rio De Janeiro, Brazil - Members of the Unidos de Vila Isabel samba school take part in the Rio de Janeiro Carnival parade at the sambodromo. (Credit Image: © Fernando Bizerra Jr/EFE/ZUMA24.com) ZUMA24.com / Fernando Bizerra Jr



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