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Earlier this month, long-time hosts Tom Bergeron and Erin Andrews were fired from ABC’s Dancing with the Stars. Bergeron’s exit was especially surprising, since he’d been hosting the reality competition show since its premiere in 2005. However, professional ballroom dancer Derek Hough is of the mindset that Dancing with the Stars' decision to replace Bergeron is “understandable.”
Upon announcing Tom Bergeron’s firing from Dancing with the Stars, ABC reps released a statement citing that the competition show would be going in a “new creative direction” for Season 29, and soon announced that Tyra Banks would be the new host and EP. While this change upset many longtime fans of the ABC series, Derek Hough believes Bergeron’s departure is actually par for the course in Hollywood. Here’s what he said to Bevy Smith during an appearance on SiriusXM's Bevelations:
My initial reaction -- I guess I was pretty shocked. Tom Bergeron is such a staple of Dancing With the Stars, and he's a good friend of mine. We're friends, and he's a good man and he's been there since the beginning, and he's just a great guy. But you also understand that we're in the entertainment industry. Nothing is certain, and there's always these efforts to reinvigorate and switch things up. So, you look at that and go, 'That's also understandable,' I think.
It might be “understandable,” but I still think it’s disappointing that Dancing with the Stars will return next season without Tom Bergeron, especially with regular judges Carrie Ann Inaba, Len Goodman, and Bruno Tonioli expected to return for Season 29. Derek Hough himself has also been a staple of the show for many seasons, so perhaps he’s thinking along the lines of how the pro dancers are often swapped in and out to include new faces every now and again.
Whatever the case, ABC execs hired former America’s Next Top Model and America’s Got Talent host Tyra Banks as Tom Bergeron’s replacement to “reinvigorate” Dancing with the Stars for its upcoming season. Banks, who will also serve as executive producer, is “excited to continue” Bergeron’s legacy moving forward. And you know what? Derek Hough also isn’t against the decision to hire Banks at all. In his words:
To be honest, Tyra Banks, I actually... I think she's fantastic. I thought she was a fantastic host on America's Got Talent; I thought she did an amazing job. So I feel optimistic for that switch-up. I think she'll be fantastic. But as far as my history and my friendship, I was definitely shocked about Tom Bergeron, for sure.
I suppose that Dancing with the Stars going in a new creative direction does start with a new host, and Tyra Banks is very experienced when it comes to fulfilling that role. So for all intents and purposes, she likely will be pretty “fantastic” hosting the ABC series. Either way, I’ll definitely be tuning in to see how the shake-up will impact the competition series, and whether or not Derek Hough will be around in some capacity.
Dancing with the Stars Season 29 does not yet have a premiere date scheduled. Stay tuned to CinemaBlend for updates. In the meantime, be sure to check in with our 2020 fall TV guide to find out when every new and returning show is set to premiere.