Dancing With the Stars fans can celebrate an all-star judging panel as both Len Goodman and Derek Hough return to the ABC dance competition to sit alongside fellow judges Carrie Ann Inaba and Bruno Tonioli. Hough, a six-time Mirrorball champion himself, originally came in as Goodman's replacement last season when COVID-19 travel restrictions prevented the U.K.-based judge from making his way to the ballroom, and fans ended up loving the pro dancer's insights into Season 29.
Tyra Banks will also return as the ABC dance competition show's host after making her debut in the ballroom last season following the shocking exit of hosts Tom Bergeron and Erin Andrews. The Dancing With the Stars Season 30 premiere has yet to be announced, as have the celebrity competitors and their pro dancer partners.
Competing last season were celebs like Kaitlyn Bristowe, who walked away with the Mirrorball Trophy at the end of the season alongside pro Artem Chigvintsev, as well as Nelly, Nev Schulman, Johnny Weir, Justina Machado, Chrishell Stause, Jeannie Mai and Carole Baskin. The line-up of pro dancers excited fans with the return of Sharna Burgess, Chigvintsev and Keo Motsepe, who had sat out Season 28, and the addition of two new pros, Daniella Karagach and Britt Stewart, who had previously served as featured dancers and troupe members on the show before taking a starring role.
It was an emotional finale for Bristowe, who claimed she had previously been blocked by Bachelor creator Mike Fleiss from appearing on DWTS after her season of The Bachelorette due to his fears that the show would attract people interested in fame over finding love. Bristowe told Entertainment Tonight after the win that the long journey it took to get her the win "makes it all so much better… That it was taken away, that I still believed in it, that I worked hard for it, that I stayed true to myself through it." She added, "you just never know when it's going to happen and the fact that everything just aligned for us and that we're here with the Mirrorball, like, what?"
Chigvintsev added that he thought his "old dancing dreams were done and dusted" after he was cut from Season 28 of DWTS, "and then just standing with Kaitlyn in the final and being called as the champion of the season? I mean, it was such a surreal moment that I never thought it would be, in the reality of this world."