Celebrity contestants on Dancing With the Stars take weeks to months out of their year to compete in the ballroom, depending on how long they last on a season.
Reports on what, exactly, the stars take away if they win the series differs, but it’s clear that the winner takes home more than just the Mirrorball trophy.
According to Variety, the maximum amount of cash that a Dancing With the Stars contestant could take home is about $295,000 for a season. Prior to the report, though, it was reported that contestants could make nearly $350,000 on the season.
Those numbers were reflective of season 28 of Dancing With the Stars, which means that the winnings could have increased a bit since then, as the show is going into season 30 at some point in 2021.
The Cast Receives a Sign-On Bonus in Addition to Winnings
According to Variety, contestants on DWTS get paid $125,000 for the rehearsal period as well as for the first two weeks that they’re on the show. This means that any contestant announced makes at least that before getting bonuses as they continue on the show.
In 2010, Gawker reported that each week the stars stay on the show, the more they get paid. The report says that if they make it past the first two weeks, they make an extra $10,000 each for the next two, and if they make it past the next two episodes, they’ll get $20,000 for each of the next two.
Then, if they continue on that path, they’ll make $30,000 for each of the following two episodes and $50,000 for appearing in the final two episodes.
Those numbers are almost certainly outdated, however, as they come from 11 years ago.
Reports on Cast Salary Report Pros Make Less Than Celebrities
While celebrity contestants may be able to walk away with nearly $300,000, that amount could be less for the professional dancers on the show.
According to The Reel Rundown, pro salaries span a large range, but some of the cast may make up to $5,200 a week. The report stated that it’s possible the veterans make that large amount and the newer dancers would earn much less.
According to The Cinemaholic, however, professional dancers were making up to $100,000 per season in 2019, and it’s possible that that’s gone up recently. Celebrity contestants make more for their time on the show. It has been reported that Sharna Burgess was the highest-paid female pro during season 27.
Some pros definitely get paid more than others. According to papers originally obtained by Us Weekly, professional dancer Gleb Savchenko’s wife claimed that Savchenko made around $400,000 on Dancing With the Stars.
The documents, which were filed to ask for child support and spousal support, he “earns an approximate annual salary of $406,614” from Dancing With the Stars.
It’s important to note that the salary would also include the amount Savchenko made from being part of the live tour, not strictly from the amount of time he spent on the show itself.
Dancing With the Stars will likely return for season 30 in 2021.