Tom Bergeron, the longtime host of ABC's Dancing With The Stars, has been pushed out of the beloved reality competition series. Bergeron, whose witty dad jokes were a trademark of the show, revealed producers told him he would no longer be hosting. Bergeron has had several co-hosts throughout the show's run, most recently sportscaster Erin Andrews, who is also leaving.
"Just informed [Dancing With The Stars] will be continuing without me," Bergeron surprisingly tweeted Monday evening. "It's been an incredible 15-year run and the most unexpected gift of my career. I'm grateful for that and for the lifelong friendships made. That said, now what am I supposed to do with all of these glitter masks?" Comedian Randy Rainbow said he would "be right over," prompting Bergeron to joke, "On the plus side, Now I'm free for our socially distanced lunch!" Another fan asked if Bergeron was leaving because he was becoming a contestant. "Um... no," he quickly replied.
"Tom Bergeron will forever be part of the Dancing with the Stars family," ABC said in a statement to TVLine. "As we embark on a new creative direction, he departs the show with our sincerest thanks and gratitude for his trademark wit and charm that helped make this show a success. Erin will also not be returning, and we appreciate all that she brought to the ballroom. Fans have been rooting for her since she originally competed as a contestant back in 2010, and her signature sense of humor has become a hallmark of the show."
Bergeron has been hosting the U.S. version of DWTS since it launched in 2005 and has hosted all 28 seasons. The Massachusetts native has hosted several game shows during his career, including Hollywood Squares and The $100,000 Pyramid. He also hosted America's Funniest Home Videos for ABC from 2001 to 2015.
Despite the coronavirus pandemic, Dancing With the Stars is still scheduled to come back for the 2020-2021 television season. After several years of airing two DWTS cycles during a single television season, the network switched to one cycle-per-season. The most recent season aired between September and November 2019, ending with The Bachelorette star Hannah Brown winning.
Once the show was renewed, Bergeron joked about how it could be filmed during the pandemic. "I wonder if the spray tan equipment can be refit as body sanitizers?" he asked on Instagram. ABC has not said how the new season will be made or announced any celebrity contestants.0comments
Bergeron's time on DWTS has been mostly drama-free, although he publicly disagreed with his employer over picking Sean Spicer to compete in Season 28. On Aug. 21, 2019, after ABC confirmed the former White House press secretary would be on the show, Bergeron issued a lengthy statement, explaining his disappointment. He was not particularly happy to see a family-friendly show ensnared in political controversy.
"For me, as host, I always gaze into the camera's lens and imagine you on the other side, looking for a two-hour escape from whatever life hassles you've been wrestling with. That's a connection, and a responsibility, which I take very seriously, even I occasionally season it with dad jokes," Bergeron wrote at the time. "Hopefully, when [co-host] Erin Andrews and I look into those lenses again on September 16, you'll be on the other side looking back, able to enjoy the charismatic pro dancers, the unpredictable judges and the kitschy charm that has denied DWTS since 2005."