Season 30 of Dancing with the Stars is firing on all cylinders. During the most recent horror-themed episode, Real Housewives of Atlanta star Kenya Moore was eliminated. I was horrified- Kenya seemed fine with the judges’ decision.
Influencer Olivia Jade has created quite a stir in the ballroom, and not just because of her dancing. The judges have praised her technique and chemistry with her partner, Val Chmerkovskiy. But Olivia is best known for her parents’ part in the college admissions scandal.
Olivia’s mother, actress Lori Loughlin, and her father, designer Mossimo Giannulli, both served time in prison for their involvement in the bribery scandal. The couple paid $500,000 to gain admission to the University of Southern California for their two daughters. Olivia and her sister were admitted as recruits for the crew team, but neither had ever participated in the sport.
DWTS host Tyra Banks defended casting Olivia on the show. “I think Olivia is so brave,” Tyra stated. “I think people don’t know her; they know what happened to her. She is having to deal with that, and I think she’s coming to Dancing with the Stars to be able to tell her story and show her vulnerability,” Tyra added.
Now Olivia is slamming gossip that she is hooking up with Val. Val is married to fellow dance pro Jenna Johnson. They tied the knot on April 13, 2019. Jenna shared a stunning wedding photo on Instagram with the simple caption, “Mr. & Mrs. Chmerkovskiy 4.13.2019.” I would have loved to see the dance floor at their reception.
A TikTok user posted a video that alluded to a contestant getting romantic with their married dance partner. The video was deleted. No contestants were mentioned by name, but on October 17, 2021, Olivia hit back with her own TikTok video. Olivia said, “Hey guys, I just wanna clear the air before this goes any further or this video blows up anymore. I’m just going to be super blunt and straight up, and just say that Val and I are not hooking up. We’ve never hooked up,” Olivia stated. “This is a complete rumor; we are genuinely good friends and I adore his wife.”
Olivia remarked, “It’s just a dance show and we’re just friends. And I’d get it if it was true, but it’s not, so let’s end this here and let’s f–king dance and have fun on this show, and not create lies especially when you also have almost 400k followers,” the influencer added. “It’s not cool.”
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In an interview with STYLECASTER, Jenna addressed the cheating whispers. “It’s not a new thing for me and Val because we’ve been on the show for many years, and we’ve experienced this many times. Both of us—with me, with him. I was proud of Olivia for speaking up so quickly,” Jenna explained.
“I’m sure it’s an uncomfortable situation for her. She’s had to deal with some nasty rumors over the years.” That is an understatement. “She’s been strong and doesn’t say much, but I think she was so quick to respond because it involved other people,” the dancer said. “I was proud of her and very grateful because she’s so sweet and humble about this whole experience.”
Jenna emphasized that dealing with speculation of behind-the-scenes romances is just part of their job. “Val and I are used to this. It’s not the first time, and it’s not going to be the last time,” she commented. “Because we both take our careers very seriously, we want to create a connection and an energy with our partners because that’s how you’re successful on the show. If you look at any of the partners who do well, they have a bond together,” Jenna remarked.
So, does the gossip ever get to Jenna? “Obviously, it’s annoying at times and like, ‘Did we forget that Val and I are married?’ But that’s the nature of the internet. They love drama,” Jenna said.
“Val and I were kind of giggling about it like, ‘This means we’re both doing our jobs very well.’ It’s a weird situation for new people walking into it, but that’s the nature of our business,” Jenna shared. “You also have to look at actors who have intimate scenes with their costars. We’re acting. We’re creating art. We’re telling stories. That’s our job,” the So You Think You Can Dance vet shared.
Jenna is making DWTS history this season with her partner, pop star JoJo Siwa. They are the first same-sex couple in the history of the franchise, and they are killing it on the dance floor. The duo earned the first perfect score of the season during Grease week and followed up with another perfect score on scary movie week.
TELL US- WHAT DO YOU THINK OF JENNA’S REACTION TO THE RUMORS?
[Photo Credit: ABC/Maarten de Boer]