Derek Hough is returning to the ballroom for season 29 of Dancing With the Stars, and now, we finally know what his role is!
During Tuesday’s Good Morning America, ABC revealed that the six-time mirrorball champion will be serving as a judge this season. He’ll be replacing Len Goodman, who is currently in the U.K. and unable to travel due to COVID-19 restrictions. Goodman will still be a part of the show in a different capacity, however, sharing his ballroom expertise remotely.
“This show has been and will always be incredibly special to me,” Hough, 35, said of his return. “Coming back feels like coming home and I couldn’t be more excited to be back in the ballroom.”
Hough previously competed as a pro on DWTS for 17 seasons, winning the mirrorball a total of six times, the most of any other pro. He took home first place with Brooke Burke (season 7), Nicole Scherzinger (season 10), Jennifer Grey (season 11), Kellie Pickler (season 16), Amber Riley (season 17) and Bindi Irwin (season 21).
Last week, ET spoke with new host Tyra Banks, who teased what fans can expect from the all-new season of Dancing With the Stars, which kicks off Monday, Sept. 14 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.
“I think it’s important to continue to make sure that younger people are watching the show with their older family members, that co-viewing, of bringing everybody together,” she said. “So I have some ideas on having a little popular dance mixed [in], we have some ideas, we’ll be testing that and seeing how people are feeling that.
“And there’s some other things I’m not supposed to share, but, trying to turn it up a notch!” she added. “But not too much, because the show is a hit. I’m not coming here with a sledgehammer… that’d be dumb. So just adding some sprinkle pixie dust to it.”
Banks also teased whether all three of the show’s longtime judges — Carrie Ann Inaba, Bruno Tonioli and Goodman — would be returning.
“Carrie Ann is definitely back, and Bruno, who I can’t wait to vibe with because he is just as crazy as I am,” she said at the time. “At the moment, we’re trying to figure out how to incorporate Len Goodman because he is in England and there’s all these travel restrictions because of COVID-19. So we’re trying to figure that out.”
Hear more on in the video below.
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