Dancing With the Stars is not going anywhere. The future of the long-running celebrity ballroom competition has been confirmed by ABC’s new entertainment president, Karey Burke, who told reporters at the Television Critics Association winter press tour that the show will “definitely be returning in the fall” for Season 28, despite a skipped spring season this year, TV Line reports.
Burke also said the decision to skip a spring cycle for the first time in Dancing With the Stars‘ long history was made before she got to the network. The ABC chief did not rule out the possibility of a return to two full cycles per year after last spring’s mini all-athlete season.
“We’re in conversations about that,” Burke told TV Line. “They’re coming in soon to talk about their plans for the fall, and we’ll discuss it then.”
Longtime Dancing With the Stars fans were stunned when ABC announced in December that the spring season of the celebrity dancing show would not be happening in 2019. The spring cycle of DWTS usually debuts after the finale of The Bachelor in March, and it’s hard to imagine ABC’s Monday night schedule without host Tom Bergeron and judges Len Goodman, Bruno Tonioli, and Carrie Ann Inaba after 27 seasons.
Of course, ABC changed up the Dancing With the Stars format in 2018 by doing an all-athlete season in the spring and a kid-themed spinoff that aired late last year. But there was also a regular season that premiered in September that ended with a controversial winner — radio personality Bobby Bones, who took home the mirrorball trophy over more talented finalists Alexis Ren, Milo Manheim, and Evanna Lynch — that had some fans calling for a change in the competition’s voting format.
In an interview with Entertainment Tonight, Bones’ pro partner, Sharna Burgess. said she was “incredibly surprised” by the decision not to air a spring season of Dancing With the Stars this year. Burgess said she was hopeful that there could be a surprise season in the summer or perhaps another DWTS: Juniors season in the fall. But even without a confirmed return date for this spring, Sharna Burgess predicted Dancing With the Stars will be on the air for many years to come.
“This show is such a fan favorite,” Burgess said. “I mean, come on, it’s not going anywhere! We’re gonna do 30, 35, maybe 45 seasons! I’ll have babies and be married, retired by that point, but this is DWTS... it isn’t going anywhere.”
People has confirmed that Sharna Burgess will be part of Dancing With the Stars‘ 28th season later this year.