DWTS Showrunner Reveals Why He Brought Mark Ballas Back to the Ballroom

Mark Ballas DWTS

ABC/Andrew Eccles Mark Ballas has made his return to "Dancing With the Stars."

The “Dancing With the Stars” season 31 showrunner has revealed why he decided to bring fan-favorite professional dancer Mark Ballas back to the ballroom.

Ballas first joined “Dancing With the Stars” during season five of the show and was nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Choreography in 2011, and it was a surprise to fans that he was set to return after a five-year absence.

For the upcoming season, Ballas has been partnered with TikTok superstar Charli D’Amelio. Read on to learn about why he chose to return to the ballroom dance competition.


Green Wanted Ballas’s Creativity Back on the Competition

In an interview with Entertainment Weekly ahead of the season premiere, Green revealed that he wanted Ballas to come back because he wanted his creativity in the ballroom, but he also wanted someone to really challenge TikTok superstar Charli D’Amelio.

D’Amelio boasts the second-highest following on TikTok with 145.7 million followers. There, she posts dance videos as well as updates fans on her life and products that she loves. The star also joins the roster of celebrities who have dance experience. She’s been taking dance lessons since she was a young girl.

“Charli has got a ton of potential,” Green shared. “She’s got a lot of dance background. So, we wanted to make sure that whoever worked with her was really pushing her and being imaginative and I can’t think of a dancer who is more imaginative than Mark. I reached out to him and said, ‘Are you interested?’ and he thought about it and said, ‘Yeah, let’s go for it.’ He loves the show.”

He added, “He’s obviously got his music and acting and all the other things he’s been doing. But he just thought, ‘Why not? Let’s give it a go.’ I can already see the competition in his eyes. You can take the boy out the ballroom, but you can’t take the ballroom out of the boy.”


Ballas Wanted to Return Because Conrad Green Called Him

Ballas said he was in once Green called him to return.

“I got a call from Conrad Green,” he said in an interview with Us Weekly. “I worked with Conrad back when I joined, back in the day, and he was like, ‘would you be down to do it?’ and I was like, ‘it sounds like fun,’ and that’s why I’m here.”

In the interview, Ballas said that D’Amelio’s dance experience may be a hindrance rather than something good for the team.

“Sometimes with that different discipline, you kind of have to go in reverse,” he shared. “But so far we’ve been having fun… She works very hard.”

He also shared that he missed the “creative aspect” of working on the show, so he’s excited to get back to that.

Season 31 of “Dancing With the Stars” premieres on Monday, September 19 on Disney+. The show will be the first live competition show to stream on the platform

READ NEXT: Fans Vow to Boycott ‘Dancing With the Stars’ Season 31

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