In a new twist to the ever-evolving saga that is the new season of ABC’s Dancing With the Stars, the pros will reportedly not meet their celebrity partners before the cast is revealed on Good Morning America on August 21.
A website devoted to a deep dive into the inner workings of the series titled Pure DWTS reported that the pros may meet their partners for the first time on live television, not allowing for the carefully edited first-meet clips viewers generally see during the premiere episode of the series.
If this does occur, it could very well be a deliberate move on the part of the series to shake things up for the cast and viewers from the get-go. Instead of a happy meet up where the pros and celebs are seen being excited to meet one another, it will be a true test of each person’s professionalism if they are face-to-face with either someone they have never heard of before or could have never dreamed dancing with.
Speaking of pros, the website also analyzed which dancers are definitely not returning and confirmed, via its sources, to be taking to the ballroom floor once again.
Definitely out are the three top dancers that viewers would love to see make a return — Julianne Hough (under contract to America’s Got Talent), Derek Hough (currently starring in World of Dance) and Mark Ballas (touring and recording with his wife, BC Jean).
Of the female pros from last season including Lindsay, Witney, Jenna, Emma, Cheryl, Sharna and Hayley, only two have been confirmed from a Pure DWTS source — Lindsay and Emma. For the males, including Artem, Gleb, Keo, Alan, Sasha, Val and Brandon, four have been confirmed — Gleb, Keo, Sasha, and Artem will likely sit out this season to appear on VH1’s Total Bellas, starring Artem’s girlfriend, Nikki Bella, whom he met when the two competed together on Season 25 of the series.
Several of the women have gone through some major personal and professional changes over the past year. Cheryl Burke married Matthew Lawrence and Jenna Johnson wed Val Chmerkovskiy. Lindsay Arnold launched a new clothing line titled LAC by Lindsay Arnold, as reported by The Inquisitr on August 9. Witney is now starring alongside pal and fellow mirrorball winner Alfonso Ribeiro in a reboot of the game show Catch 21, so it is unclear what her availability for the show is this season.
As for Sharna Burgess, who scored a big win in Season 27, her first mirrorball trophy alongside Bobby Bones, backlash surrounding their win may see her to take a break from the show this season. This has not been confirmed by the network and is currently just speculation.
Dancing With the Stars will announce its newest roster of celebrities and pros on Good Morning America on Wednesday, August 21. GMA airs from 7-9 a.m. EST on ABC.
The new season of DWTS will premiere Monday, September 16 at 8 p.m. EST on ABC.