Derek Hough Returns to Dancing with the Stars as a Judge for Season 29


Dancing with the Stars has revealed a new detail about its upcoming season, finally putting an end to speculation and rumors about Derek Hough‘s role in the show going forward. Hough, two-time Emmy Award winner and six-time Mirrorball winner, will join Carrie Ann Inaba and Bruno Tonioli as a judge for the first time when DWTS returns for Season 29 on Sept. 14. The news was announced on Good Morning America.

“This show has been and will always be incredibly special to me,” Hough said in a statement. “Coming back feels like coming home and I couldn’t be more excited to be back in the ballroom.”

Dancing with the Stars Season 29: Everything We Know So Far

Though Hough is effectively filling the seat usually occupied by longtime judge Len Goodman, Hough isn’t meant to replace Goodman. ABC said that “in light of current circumstances, Len Goodman will be unable to judge this season live in the ballroom, though he will still be a part of the show in a different capacity sharing his ballroom expertise from the UK.” 

Hough is of course not the only well-known face in a new role this season; he joins new host and executive producer Tyra Banks in shaking up the new season. They’ll be moderating and judging the action as this year’s crop of stars, including Tiger King‘s Carole Baskin, Johnny Weir, Skai Jackson Nelly, and former Bachelorette star Kaitlyn Bristowe, shake and shimmy for the Mirrorball trophy. Which pro dancers the celebrities are being paired with is still a mystery, but you can see the full lineup of contestants here

Dancing with the Stars Season 29 premieres on Monday, Sept. 14 at 8/7c on ABC.

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