SAN DIEGO, September 2, 2015 – The producers of “Dancing With The Stars” still had a few surprises left for Wednesday morning’s cast announcement for Season 21.
Most of the competitors for Season 21 had been revealed day by day over the past week leading up to the formal reveal and traditional first appearance on ABC’s “Good Morning America.”
Added to the cast are actor and reality TV train wreck Gary Busey, 71; and Alex Skarlatos, 22. Skarlatos’s name may not be immediately familiar to you, but you know him because he’s been in the headlines for several weeks. He is one of three Americans to disarm a terrorist suspect on a French train.
Skarlatos said he isn’t sure what his fellow Army National Guard members will think about his appearance, but said he thinks it will be fun. Lindsay Arnold, who was originally scheduled to dance with the troupe this year, gets the call to dance with Skarlatos.
Busey will be appearing on his fourth reality TV show. Coming back to the show to dance with Busey and perhaps attempt to get him to focus on rehearsals is long-time fan favorite pro Anna Trebunskaya, also a happy bit of news for fans today.
The rest of the cast:
Tamar Braxton, 38: The Grammy-nominated singer, talk show host, and reality TV star with her family on “Braxton Family Values” follows in older sister Toni’s footsteps, who also competed on DWTS. Braxton said she kept her DWTS assignment a secret from the family until today. She will dance with returning Mirror Ball Trophy champion Val Chmerkovskiy.
Kim Zolciak Biermann, 37: Zolciak Biermann brings her big personality and bigger wigs to the dance floor from “The Real Housewives of Atlanta.” She is also a singer and the wife of NFL player Kroy Biermann of the Atlanta Falcons.
Bindi Irwin, 17: Daughter of the late reality TV star, Steve Irwin, the Australian “Crocodile Hunter” star. Irwin is an actress and TV presenter in her native Australia. No word yet on her pro partner.
Victor Espinoza, 43: The first jockey to win the Triple Crown in 37 years, Espinoza rode American Pharoah to the greatest achievement in horse racing. He said during his announcement on ESPN’s “Sports Center” he had no dance experience at all and no idea whether he’s more a Waltz or a Cha Cha guy. He will dance with former Mirror Ball Trophy winner Karina Smirnoff.
Nick Carter, 35: Former Backstreet Boys singer said he was inspired to get on board after fellow BSB singer Joey Fatone encouraged him, and after his little brother Aaron Carter finished fifth in Season 9. He will dance with pro Sharna Burgess.
Carlos Pena, 26: The actor from the NIckolodeon series “Big Time Rush” with dance with former Mirror Ball Trophy winning pro Witney Carson.
Alexa Vega, 26: The “Spy Kids” movie actress will dance with pro Mark Ballas. Pena and Vega will be the first husband and wife to square off against each other on the show.
Paula Deen, 68: The controversial chef has been asked to participate several times on the show in the past, but said she finally felt her weight was at a point where she could be comfortable saying yes. She will dance with another returning pro to the show, Louis Van Amstel..
Chaka Khan, 62: The R&B music star will compete with pro partner is Keo Motsepe, who has made early exits his first two seasons.
Andy Grammer, 31: The singer-songwriter was originally assigned pro partner Peta Murgatroyd, but she will sit out this season due to an ankle injury.
Hayes Grier, 15: This North Carolina teenager has 3.5 million followers on Vine and two million on Twitter. Fans love his personal videos and he’s been on a live tour this summer. He may not be known to DWTS fans but his fans will know how to rack up the votes online. He will dance with pro Emma Slater.
Now in season 21, the popularity and staying power of “Dancing With The Stars” is unprecedented. While reality competition shows including the former powerhouse “American Idol” have come and gone, there is still plenty of shine on the Mirror Ball Trophy. Competitors who win are introduced as “Olympic medalist and Dancing With The Stars champion,” or “platinum recording star and DWTS champion.” No matter how impressive their accomplishments, winning the show is right up there on the resume.
DWTS’s producer have hit on a lineup formula that never fails to produce surprises and entertainment. As host Tom Bergeron said on GMA today, “In many ways with this cast, it’s going to be what I love best about live television, that unpredictable nature.”
We agree with you, Tom.
Who do you like this season? Who do you think will win the Mirror Ball Trophy? Tell us in the Comments section. Then make plans to join Communities for our first Live Chat of Season 21.
“Dancing With The Stars: Season 21” debuts on Monday, September 14, at 8 p.m. ET on ABC. Join Communities Digital News fan chat each and every episode right here on CDN.
Gayle Lynn Falkenthal, APR, is President/Owner of the Falcon Valley Group in San Diego, California. She is also a serious boxing fan covering the Sweet Science for Communities. Read more Media Migraine in Communities Digital News. Follow Gayle on Facebook and on Twitter @PRProSanDiego. Gayle can be reached via Google +
Please credit “Gayle Falkenthal for Communities Digital News” when quoting from or linking to this story.
Copyright © 2015 by Falcon Valley Group