Published 10:06 PM EDT Jul 13, 2020
Tom Bergeron the smooth-talking, unflappable host of “Dancing With the Stars” will not return to the reality dance competition as the show moves in new direction next season.
Former contestant Erin Andrews, who has co-hosted since 2014, will also be replaced when the 29th season begins in fall 2020, the reality show confirmed Monday.
Bergeron, the original host who has worked on the show for 28 seasons, tweeted Monday that ABC would be “continuing without me” for the first time.
“It’s been an incredible 15 year run and the most unexpected gift of my career,” Bergeron wrote. “I’m grateful for that and for the lifelong friendships made. That said, now what am I supposed to do with all of these glitter masks?”
Ever the witty quipster, Bergeron added, “On the plus side, Now I’m free for our socially distanced lunch!”
Network ABC and production company BBC Studios said in a statement to USA TODAY that both Bergeron and Andrews would be replaced due to the “creative new direction.”
“Tom Bergeron will forever be part of the ‘Dancing with the Stars’ family,” the statement said. “He departs the show with our sincerest thanks and gratitude for his trademark wit and charm that helped make this show a success. Erin will also not be returning, and we appreciate all that she brought to the ballroom.”
The network did not say when replacements would be named. Bergeron had been outspoken and critical last season over the show’s casting of former Trump aid Sean Spicer. Bergeron tweeted at the time that he had been assured by “DWTS” brass they would not cast the polarizing political figure, but “subsequently (and rather obviously), a decision was made to, as we often say in Hollywood, ‘go in a different direction.’ ”
2014 “Dancing With the Star” contestant and “Back To the Future” star Lea Thompson lamented Bergeron’s loss on Twitter. “I love you. You are the best. There is no @DancingABC without you. They might as well (cancel) it,” she wrote.
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