Fan Fare

Entertainment behind the scenes

The “curse” continues on “Dancing with the Stars”

Photo

Three more contestants on the ABC show “Dancing with the Stars” nursed injuries on Friday as they steeled themselves for their appearance on the show next week. Dance floor casuaheidi-klum-tom-bergeronlties Steve-O, Steve Wozniak and Gilles Marini are all hurting, but they want to stay on, according to media reports.

Steve-O, a daredevil stunt man who starred in the television series “Jackass,” has complained of an on-going back injury. Wozniak, who co-founded Apple Computer Inc, was photographed earlier this week leaving a Los Angeles dance studio with a cast on his leg. Marini, a French-born actor who starred in last year’s movie “Sex and the City,” has said he separated his shoulder. It remains to be seen on Monday’s episode if all three contestants will follow through on their pledges to soldier on.

This comes after two original contestants, the singer Jewel and the celebrity journalist Nancy O’Dell, were scratched from the show before the premiere episode last Monday with knee and leg injuries. Former Playboy model Holly Madison and “Bachelor” star Melissa Rycroft replaced the two contestants.  

Media reports have described all the injuries as a continuation of the “curse” that supposedly plagues the show, now in its eighth season. (Who could forget Marie Osmond’s collapse on the ballroom floor or Julianne Hough’s appendicitis and endometriosis?) Another possible explanation is that many Americans are simply out of shape, so the rigors of performing on a show with pirouettes, jumps and dizzying footwork could be too much for the average body to take.

“Dancing with the Stars” fans flip for Shawn Johnson

Photo

Jilted on national TV last week by the “The Bachelor”,  former cheerleader Melissa Rycroft is expected to join ex-Playboy model Holly Madison as the last minute “Dancing with the Stars” replacements for injured singer Jewel and celebrity journalist Nancy O’Dell.shawn

But on the eve of the eighth season of the show, it seems that Olympic champion gymnast Shawn Johnson, 17,  is the celebrity that fans are most excited about seeing, according to an AOL poll.

Brooke Burke takes home the “Dancing” disco ball

Photo

(Writing and reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis) 
 
Brooke Burke hoisted the championship trophy on “Dancing with the Stars” on Tuesday, and although her win came as a surprise to virtually no one, the former travel show host and mother of four was left almost speechless by it all. 
 
It was an emotional night for Burke, who ended her last dance routine by waltzing over to her two daughters and kissing them. Her Viennese Waltz was not as acrobatic as the routines Warren Sapp and Lance Bass performed for their last dances, but the judges liked Brooke’s style and they gave her a perfect score, with judge Carrie Ann Inaba nearly weeping as she talked about how great the performance was.  
 
Brooke’s perfect score of 30 capped off a season in which she had long been the front-runner. The 37-year-old performer with long eyelashes and flawless footwork consistently impressed, with judge Bruno Tonioli on Tuesday telling her, “You truly are the jewel in the crown of this really grand finale.” 
 
And with that, Warren and his partner Kym Johnson and Lance and his partner Lacey Schwimmer, or Lancey as they liked to be called, graciously bowed out. Lance was the first of Tuesday’s three finalists to be eliminated, telling the judges and the crowd, “This has been the most fun I’ve had in my entire life.” He is not the only contestant to talk of the show in such glowing terms. On Monday, Warren said that if he won the championship it would be “the greatest accomplishment of my life.” And this from a man who was on a Super Bowl winning team during his professional football career. 
 
Also on Tuesday’s show, 82-year-old former contestant Cloris Leachman made a comeback of sorts, dancing with partner Corky Ballas again and performing in a couple comedy sketches, not to mention going after random citizens with a microphone in a man-on-the-street interview segment. Comedian and former contestant Jeffrey Ross roasted Leachman, and just about everyone else. But his best jokes were aimed at Cloris. Referring to a 1989 movie in which two young men drag along a dead man and pretend he’s alive, Ross described Leachman’s dancing style thusly, “It’s like Weekend at Bernie’s: The Musical.’”

No tears, no jeers; Cody Linley exits “Dancing with the Stars”

Photo

(Writing and reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis)

It could hardly come as a surprise to many viewers when Cody Linley was voted off “Dancing with the Stars” on Tuesday, after he finished at the bottom of the judges’ scoring tally for three straight weeks.

“DWTS” co-host Samantha Harris told Cody, 18, that he had grown up in his time on the show. Last week a small contingent of his young fans squealed in delight when Maurice Greene was eliminated instead of him. On Tuesday, the crowd gave Cody a warm send-off.
 
“Words can’t even explain the true amazing, growing, learning journey that I’ve had on this show,” Cody said. “I can’t show my appreciation any more to Julianne. I can’t say thank you. I love her so much. This opportunity has been so amazing.”

On “Dancing With the Stars,” is it Cody Linley’s last dance?

Photo

(Writing and reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis)
 
“Hannah Montana” star Cody Linley has waited patiently until he could reunite with his favorite high-stepper, Julianne Hough, who was out on medical leave. On Tuesday they hit the floor together again on “Dancing With The Stars,” after Cody squeaked past last week’s elimination round. But how long will they last? 

Tuesday night, 18-year-old Cody fretted over whether he could pull off his paso doble, saying he worried his young age could keep him from looking manly enough for the dance style, which is meant to resemble a bull fight. As it turns out, Cody had other problems with the dance. The judges called his performance wooden and stiff, and judge Len Goodman remarked on Cody’s military outfit and marshal choreography as he gave Cody a dressing-down.

Julianne Hough twists again on “Dancing with the Stars”

Photo

(Reporting and Writing by Alex Dobuzinskis)

After having her appendix removed only two weeks ago, popular dancer Julianne Hough made her comeback on “Dancing with the Stars”  Tuesday, twisting the night away with her brother, Derek Hough, to the tune of Jerry Lee Lewis’ “Great Balls of Fire”. 

And Hough’s partner on the show, “Hannah Montana” star Cody Linley, was glad to have her back. In a segment with relationship expert Drew Pinsky, better known as Dr. Drew, the 18-year-old Cody opened up about his feelings for Julianne.
    
With tears streaming, Cody said he worried about Julianne during her hospitalization, which was related to complications from a condition called endometriosis. “She’s an amazing person who has let me grow as a person,” a tearful Cody said. Dr. Drew put a box of tissues between Cody and Julianne, who sat nearby also crying. All the couples got the Dr. Drew treatment on Tuesday, but the other contestants limited their concerns to overcoming rehearsal room sniping, while Julianne and Cody were the only ones to cry tears over their friendship.
    
The fans’ desire to see Cody and Julianne dance together again, after pro dancer Edyta Sliwinska stepped in as a replacement partner for Julianne, could have earned Cody some votes this week as he escaped elimination. Instead, Olympic sprinter Maurice Greene and his partner Cheryl Burke were voted off.
    
Burke told Greene that in her years on “Dancing with the Stars” she has never encountered a partner who worked harder. And playing off their catchphrase “winner, winner chicken dinner,” Burke told Greene, “You will always be the winner, winner chicken dinner of my heart.” And with that, four couples were left to compete next week.

Brooke Burke: Last woman dancing on “DWTS”

Photo

(Reporting and writing by Alex Dobuzinskis)

Five celebrities are left on “Dancing with the Stars,” but only one is a woman. Fortunately for her and for fans, hostess and model Brooke Burke knows how to do the jitterbug, the samba, the rumba and whatever else the show’s producers throw at her.
 
Chalk it up, perhaps, to Burke’s time waltzing around the globe as the host of the E! travel show “Wild On…” All that globe-trotting must have taught her a few dance steps. On Monday’s show, Burke, 37, topped the leader board with a judges’ score of 55 out of 60 for two dances. Last week, she and her professtional dance partner Derek Hough scored this season’s first perfect 30. So, it’s a fairly safe bet she won’t be traveling anywhere except across the ballroom floor anytime soon.
 
Meanwhile, retired professional football star Warren Sapp is pressing on in the competition. On Monday’s show he huffed and puffed about being 300 pounds and having to glide across the dance floor. But he finished second in Monday’s scoring, with 54 out of 60, and got the judges smiling with a routine that included his partner tapping a door-knock on his head.
 
And Julianne Hough, the popular dancing partner of “Hannah Montana” star Cody Linley, is due back on Tuesday’s show, after taking a couple weeks off for surgery to deal with a complication from a medical condition called endometriosis. The 18-year-old Linley could probably use Hough’s help. His scores have been average throughout the competition, except for in week 5 when Hough helped him to a 28 out of 30 with a jitterbug inspired by 1950s icons Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz.
 
Despite finishing at the bottom of the judges’ scoring on Monday, Linley stood next to thinly-clad temporary partner Edyta Sliwinska and delivered the best line of the night. When co-host Samantha Harris asked if he ever expected to be dancing with a half-naked woman, he answered, ”I may have imagined it but I never expected it.”
    
Still, funny lines are not enough to win the competition (as Cloris Leachman found out). And the question remains, does any man in the competition have what it takes to defeat Brooke? Or, could Brooke repeat Olympic skater Kristi Yamaguchi’s win from last season and give the women two wins in a row on “DWTS”?

“Dancing With the Stars”: Viva La Lucci

Photo

(Reporting and Writing by Alex Dobuzinskis)

Susan Lucci left “Dancing With The Stars” with class on Wednesday night, as she radiantly addressed the audience after she was voted off the ABC ballroom dancing show, following in the footsteps of another soap star from two seasons ago who also made it far in the competition.

“I just have to say I have had the most incredible experience here, I leave with a life experience, something I will never forget,” Lucci told the audience.  

Endometriosis strikes twice on “Dancing With the Stars”

Photo

(Reporting and writing by Alex Dobuzinskis)

Only days after ”Dancing With The Stars” standout Julianne Hough announced she would take time off from the competition because of a condition called endometriosis, a second dancer has said she too has the condition — and it has made her “extremely weak.” 
    
Dancing pro Lacey Schwimmer, who is partnered with former “‘N Sync” band member Lance Bass, told celebrity television show “The Insider” that she was diagnosed this week with endometriosis, a condition in which tissue normally found in the lining of the uterus grows in other parts of the body.
    
Schwimmer told “The Insider” that she realized she had many of the same symptoms as Hough, and so she got checked out by a doctor and was diagnosed with endometriosis.
    
“It hurts very bad,” Schwimmer said. “Right now I’m insanely weak and the room is spinning.”
    
Despite all that, Schwimmer is not expected to take time off from rocking the ballroom on “Dancing With The Stars.” Hough, who had surgery this week to remove her appendix, will take at least two weeks away from dancing on the show. On her Web site on Wednesday, the 20-year-old singer and dancer said she would perform her single “My Hallelujah Song” on “Dancing With The Stars” Nov. 11.

Endometriosis is not contagious, and the condition affects only 5 to 10 percent of women.
    
(Photo: copyright 2008 ABC; Kelsey McNeal)

Cloris Leachman bows out of “Dancing With the Stars”

Photo

(Reporting and writing by Alex Dobuzinskis)

The judges on ABC’s “Dancing With The Stars” won’t have Cloris Leachman to kick around anymore. The grand dame of the show was shown the exit door on Tuesday night, but she was slow to leave.
 
The Oscar-winning actress and her dancing partner, Corky Ballas, were voted off a day after the judges gave them a rock-bottom score of 15. Leachman, 82, managed to stay in the competition beyond the season’s halfway point with a loyal base of fans, despite scoring at the low end of the judge’s rankings most weeks.

She always played up the humor of her being in the competition when she is way past retirement age, and Tuesday’s show was no exception. First Leachman said she was not leaving, even before the show’s hosts had announced her elimination. Moments later when she was kicked off, the crowd gave her a standing ovation. 
 
In the middle of it all, after thanking the judges, Leachman decided she needed a rest. So she sat down on the dance floor. Ballas and the show’s hosts followed suit.
 
“I’m going to get a pretty costume and be here next week,” Leachman said. “I’m going to sit right over there.” So, viewers of “Dancing With The Stars” and her fans can expect to see more of Leachman, — just not on the ballroom floor.
 
In the meantime, viewers will not see professional dancer Julianne Hough for at least a couple weeks. The partner to “Hannah Montana” star Cody Linley, 18, announced on Monday that she was diagnosed with endometriosis, a condition in which tissue normally found in the lining of the uterus grows in other parts of the body. 
 
On Tuesday’s show, Linley told viewers that Hough underwent surgery to remove her appendix and the procedure went well. 
 
On her Web blog at Fancast.com, Hough on Tuesday also shed more light on her condition, which among other things involves complications from cysts. She wrote that she ruptured a cyst that was on her ovary, which required a widely reported trip to the hospital last week and led to her diagnosis.
 
Hough wrote that doctors wanted to “clean out the cysts” and remove her appendix also, “because later on it can be affected by the cysts.”
 
Hough said she expects to resume dancing with Linley in two weeks. In the meantime, Linley is partnered with dancing pro Edyta Sliwinska. And, as they say in Hollywood, the show goes on.

  •