'Dancing With the Stars': James Van Der Beek Says He Was 'Lucky' to Compete Before Tom Bergeron, Erin Andrews' Exits

James Van Der Beek will miss what Tom Bergeron and Erin Andrews bring to the Dancing With the Stars ballroom after the two longtime hosts were replaced by supermodel Tyra Banks ahead of the upcoming Season 29. The Dawson's Creek alum, who competed on the 2019 season of the ABC competition series alongside pro Emma Slater, had nothing for kind words for Bergeron and Andrews when speaking about his time on the show with Us Weekly.

"I loved Tom and Erin," Van Der Beek told the outlet. "That is such a crazy experience that show. I mean, it's 100% live. It's just a dance floor and a couple of judges and a dance thing you learned six days prior. One-shot, no do-overs, no nothing." Amid the chaos of the show, the Varsity Blues star said Bergeron and Andrews acted as anchor points.

"In the middle of that was this guy who was so quick on his feet, so funny and so big-hearted," he recalled. "Then you would go to Erin, who just kept it a hundred percent real and also equally quick on her feet and just as big of a heart." He continued that he counts himself "lucky" he got to perform on Dancing With the Stars before their exit," 'Cause I really, really appreciated just how they approached it and what they were for us in the eye of that storm."

Bergeron even created a special moment with Van Der Beek's mom, Melinda, who died in July. "After the contemporary [dance], he looked over, saw her and put a hand in my back and just kinda nudged me to go over knowing that we had the time," the actor remembered. "And so I did and I gave her a hug right afterward and it was my top memories. I'm always grateful to Tom for creating that moment." That being said, Van Der Beek added he is excited to see what's next for DWTS now that Banks will be taking over the hosting duties. "Tyra brings a whole different skillset and energy and vibe to the proceeding," he said. "So it will be wild."


Bergeron, who hosted Dancing With the Stars for 28 seasons since 2005, announced he had been let go from the show in July, with ABC confirming the same day that they had replaced not only Bergeron but also Andrews, who had hosted since March 2014 after competing on Season 10, followed suit with her own exit statement. Two days later, Banks was announced as the new host. Dancing With the Stars Season 29 premieres on Monday, Sept. 14 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.