DWTS Pro Expects Season 32 to Be ‘Different’ Following Tragic Loss

DWTS pros.

Heavy/Getty A DWTS pro reflects on the past and how season 32 will be "different."

A “Dancing With the Stars” pro knows that season 32 is going to look very “different” following the departure of Len Goodman, who had been part of the judges panel since the show first premiered.

“Len Goodman had that type of authority in the dance world and he earned that authority, not just on camera but behind the scenes for 50 years of being in competitive ballroom dancing, so we know Len from those days,” Val Chmerkovskiy told Entertainment Tonight.

“And then to have been introduced to Len on camera in front of millions of people, he felt like family. He felt like a granddad to us, our dance granddad and yeah, we’ll miss him. I think the show will be very different without him,” he added.

Toward the end of season 31, Goodman announced his decision to retire from the program. Although he didn’t disclose that he had cancer, the world later learned of his diagnosis when his family confirmed he had died on April 22, 2023, at the age of 78.

Here’s what you need to know:

Maks Chmerkovskiy Would Love to Judge DWTS

In the same interview, Val’s older brother Maksim Chmerkovskiy, who previously retired from the dance competition show, shared his feelings on the loss of Goodman.

“Just looking back at whatever I look at that was significant for me, he was there in some way or form. I felt close to him as a person, but I felt close to the idea of Len Goodman… I think Len was the anchor that held all three of them down through some periods of time,” Maks Chmerkovskiy explained.

“But the character of Len Goodman is what made the show a big part of what made the show stick around, stay and he developed that character for other countries. They all try to find a Len Goodman and it’s hard because they can’t, really,” he continued.

Meanwhile, in an exclusive interview with Heavy, Maks Chmerkovskiy said that he’d definitely return to the series if he was given an opportunity to judge.

“My favorite ‘capacity’ would obviously be the judging position as I’ve finally understood its role and had experience of judging a full season in Ukraine. It would be an honor to be sitting behind that desk,” he said.

Maks Chmerkovskiy decided to step away from DWTS in 2018. However, Val Chmerkovskiy is still a big part of the show; on season 31, he and Gabby Windey finished in second place.

Will DWTS Replace Len Goodman?

There have been a lot of changes happening in the DWTS world, from Julianne Hough being announced as the new host to the show moving back to ABC after one year solely on Disney+.

However, season 32 will also see a shift without the head judge on the panel. It seems many cast members are already sensing an absence that will be felt in the ballroom, and no one seems to know whether or not producers will bring in a fourth judge of just leave Carrie Ann Inaba, Bruno Tonioli, and Derek Hough to it.

In an interview with The U.S. Sun, troupe member Alexis Warr shared some thoughts about the possibility of changes to the judge’s panel.

“I don’t know if they’ll just bring it back down to just three,” she told the outlet, adding, “I know that they can throw curve balls, so I truly have no idea. But yeah, I really love … Carrie Ann and Derek and Bruno and I think that if they choose to keep the three- amazing, if they choose to add a fourth- amazing. I just really trust their decisions with all of that.”

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