Derek Hough and Bruno Tonioli have both confirmed their return to the show for the upcoming season, which is set to start in the fall of 2022.
Hough revealed that he’ll be returning for the new season in early 2022, per Parade, and Tonioli revealed he’ll be returning after he quit “Strictly Come Dancing” officially in order to focus more on “Dancing With the Stars,” he shared with BBC One.
With those two already confirmed, there’s no reason to think that there may be significant changes to the judging panel, but fans still speculated about who may be seen there. It’s still possible that Carrie Ann Inaba and Len Goodman will be returning for the next season of the show.
Fans Think There Could Be New Judges
In a Reddit thread, one fan said that the only thing they were sure about when it came to the panel was Hough’s return.
“With the new judges on ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ for some reason it’s making me think that we could have a shake up and have some new faces,” the post reads. “Would anyone object to Mary Murphy joining as a judge? She’s a familiar face and name, she’s the judge on SYTYCD who knows ballroom the best. So she is an actual professional not just some random person placed on a judging panel. I don’t know is she’d do it but if she were to come one and replace someone (like Carrie Ann) I’d be OK with it.”
People were quick to reply with their thoughts.
“My feeling is Len could go because they want someone younger, and maybe CA or Bruno,” one person replied. “Truthfully, I could care less about having a big name. Just get me a judge that is entertaining, kind, knows what they are talking about, and can put together constructive criticism.”
Another fan wants to see more familiar faces on the panel.
“I would love Cheryl [Burke] and Maks [Chmerkovskiy] coming in as judges, at least for a season to try it out,” one reply reads.
Another said they’d like to see professional dancers Debbie Allen, Derek Hough, Anna Treybunskaya, and Mia Michaels to be judges on the show.
Some Fans Want Three Judges Instead of Four
Throughout the seasons, the judging panel has moved back and forth between hosting three judges – usually Carrie Ann Inaba, Bruno Tonioli, and Len Goodman, and four judges, which would include Julianne Hough or Derek Hough.
Some people like the three-judge format more than the four-judge format, however.
“I hope Derek returns,” one person wrote. “I don’t love the judging panel of four though, it seems like overkill! I’d prefer we go back down to three!”
Another person replied, “That’s what I keep saying. I would have moved Derek to be a head choreographer and have 3 new judges.”
“Dancing With the Stars” will return in the fall of 2022 in a new home. The show will now air live exclusively on Disney+ instead of on ABC.