UPDATE: Here's the full official list of celebs and pros for Season 21. Not sure where Artem went, but...
It's almost time to head back to the dance floor for "Dancing With the Stars" Season 21. ABC's fall 2015 celeb cast won't be revealed until September 2, but the professional dancers are the real stars nowadays and "Good Morning America" revealed nine of the pros on August 19.
Here are the announced pros:
Karina Smirnoff (Season 13 pro champion, returning after a season off)
Val Chmerkovskiy (reigning Season 20 pro champion)
Derek Hough (five time pro champion)
Mark Ballas (two-time pro champ)
Witney Carson (Season 19 pro champ)
Peta Murgatroyd (Season 14 pro champ)
That's only nine names, and DWTS has had 12-13 pairs for several years now. The show hasn't had less than 10 since Season 20, so ... should we expect more pro names to be added? Where's Tony Dovolani? How about Emma Slater? No Keo Motsepe? Maybe Maksim Chmerkovskiy and/or Cheryl Burke will return, like Karina, and we just have to wait for more names. They've done that before, so there's room for hope.
Here's GMA's DWTS video, including the pros' choices for dream partners:
DWTS showrunner Rob Wade recently previewed some changes ahead, telling Glamour, "We're going from celebrating [last season's 10th anniversary] to taking risks [in Season 21]. We had a really fantastic season last season with new ideas like Judges' Choice, so that's given us [the push] to take greater risks in our themes and competitions and challenges. We're improving the show in every single area."
Rob confirmed to E! News that judges Julianne Hough (who just got engaged), Carrie Ann Inaba and Bruno Tonioli will return. He also said it wasn't 100 percent clear if head judge Len Goodman would return, since he also judges "Strictly Come Dancing" in the U.K. in the fall, and he's talked about wanting to retire from flying back and forth each week. "We'll see where he lands," Rob told E!, "we'll see how his health is, what he wants to do. But whatever happens this season, whether he comes back for some or none, the following season...I'm sure he'd be back for." Rob said they're "looking at guest judges" to fill in for Len, when needed.
"Dancing With the Stars" Season 21 premieres Monday, September 14 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC. What do you think of the pro lineup, and do you hope certain pros are added to the list, perhaps on September 2 when the celeb cast is announced?
UPDATE: According to E! News, there will indeed be 12 celebs, so the final three pro names will be revealed later ... probably on September 2.
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