Season 21 of Dancing with the Stars is shaping up to be quite the can’t miss program snoozefest. Several stars have confirmed their participation ahead of the official cast reveal on September 2nd. So far, I’m not impressed.
Joining the previously announced Bindi Irwin will be controversial celebrity chef Paula Deen, Backstreet Boys member Nick Carter, Triple Crown-winning jockey Victor Espinoza, music icon Chaka Khan, Vine star Hayes Grier, who is only 15 years old, and “Honey I’m Good” pop singer Andy Grammer.
Aww, little Bindi Irwin is all grown up. And she’s celebrating her latest good news as the first contestant to be announced in the upcoming 21st season of ABC’s Dancing With the Stars! Bindi joked in a retweet today from an interview with Good Morning America, “I’m more afraid of the judges than I am of Crocs!”
Daughter of the late Steve Irwin, best known as television’s Crocodile Hunter, Bindi is no stranger to the spotlight. After Steve tragically died from a stingray barb in 2006, Bindi (then only 8-years old) delivered a heartfelt public eulogy to a TV audience of more than 300 million viewers, going on in later years to star in My Daddy the Crocodile Hunter as well as various fitness and music DVDs.
Len, a judge since season one, initially announced his planned departure from the show last December when he expressed that the back and forth travel to film DWTS placed too much of a burden on his family and his other career commitments. “I just need a bit of time off to get on with a normal life,” he said at the time.
Many anticipated Len would change his mind and be back for the upcoming season. Instead it’s official that after 10 years on the show, Len has hung up his ABC dancing shoes and waltzed away!
Kym Johnson’s chemistry with Dancing With the Stars partner, Shark Tank star Robert Herjavec, can’t be denied – especially after that (spontaneous?) smooch on this week’s show! For now, though, Kym is avoiding that topic, instead focusing on her recent stint (with Carson Kressley, also a DWTS alumn) on RuPaul’s Drag Race as a dance coach. “It was definitely not your typical dance, it’s sort of a twist on your normal partner dance,” Johnson tells PEOPLE about the routines she helped customize for an unusual dance competition among the “half-man/half-woman” costumed queens.
Admitting to the newness (and awkwardness!) of the situation, Kym says, “I’m usually teaching a celebrity, and I’m the pro, so that, when you’re out on the dance floor, you know that at least one member of the partnership can sort of pull the other one through if they get lost,” adding, “but when you have two people in the same situation, that makes it really nerve-racking because either one of them could mess up, and it’s hard to get it back.” Kym admits she was nervous for the drag queens to pull off their final performance: “I was watching, holding my breath, thinking, ‘Please, keep it together!’ But the ones that struggled a little bit more in rehearsals ended up, I think, pulling it off the best in the actual performance,” she says.
Love among the disco lights! It seems the sparkles bid them together because Robert Herjavec is reportedly dating Kym Johnson!
The Shark Tank star was spotted at a party in the Hollywood Hills with his Dancing With The Stars partner on Saturday night, which started speculation that they’re doing more than tangoing on the dance floor! On Monday night, the newly minted happy couple snuggled up at Hyde lounge alongside other DWTS cast members for an afterparty.
To be completely honest, I was underwhelmed and disappointed by this cast reveal. Considering it’s the 20th season and the 10th anniversary for Dancing with the Stars, I expected a more exciting cast. Oh well. So, once again, I will tune in to root for my favorite pro dancers (what’s left of them) and hope to fall in love with one of the contestants along the way.
Below are photos of this season’s stars – Noah Galloway, Robert Herjavec, Patti LaBelle, Nastia Liukin, Riker Lynch, Charlotte Mckinney, RedFoo, Michael Sam, Willow Shields, Suzanne Somers, and Rumer Willis – with their pro partners. This coming Monday brings us The Bachelor season finale, then the new season of Dancing with the Stars kicks off Monday, March 16.