Brace yourself, ‘Dancing with the Stars’ is back for its 23rd season! Since its start in 2005, DWTS fans have witnessed romance, heartbreak and plenty of drama. This season is guaranteed to be no different. With the likes of muva Amber Rose, Olympic sweetheart Laurie Hernandez and Governor Rick Perry in the lineup, this season is one for the books. Whether you’re an avid fan or new to the DWTS world, there are plenty of behind-the-scenes secrets waiting to be told. Luckily for you, we rounded up 20 of the hottest facts you probably don’t know about America’s favorite dance show. Remember to tune in Monday 8/7c to catch the newest ‘Dancing with the Stars’ season on ABC.
20. ABC Won’t Allow Same-Sex Dance Partners
This may come as a surprise given it’s 2016, but rumor has it there’s been no same-sex dance duos because ABC forbids it, according to Business Insider. Sure, there was that dance with Nyle DiMarco and Keo Motsepe during a Judge’s Team-Up Challenge, but so far no same-sex dance partners have been named. However, Israel has embraced same-sex dance duos in its version of DWTS by once naming Dorit Milman and Gili Shem Tov partners. Let’s see if ABC changes its mind and follows Israel’s lead in the near future.
19. Bill Clinton Has Been Asked To Be On Almost Every Season
It’s no surprise former President Bill Clinton is a hot commodity when it comes to DWTS casting. Director Deena Katz said she’s been trying to get him on the show almost every season! I bet ratings would go out of the roof if Bill were to cha-cha his way onto the show.
18. Rapper Master P Has The Lowest And Most Embarrassing Score In DWTS History
Rapper Master P was a good sport during his short time on the show, during which he received the lowest score ever—an 8 out of 30. He wasn’t supposed to be on the show in the first place, though, but filled in for his son Lil’ Romeo after he was inured playing basketball. Cheers to Master P on getting the job done, even when it meant revealing his two left feet to the entire world.
17. The Show Goes Through Five Gallons Of Spray Tanner Each Season
Affectionately known as “spray tan Sunday,” all of the dancers show up each week to receive a fresh spray tan. Now we know why they all look so beautifully sun-kissed despite spending all of their days inside rehearsing!
16. The Dancers Practice 35-50 Hours A Week On Average
Speaking of rehearsing, the dancers practice seven hours a day, seven days a week on average. That means they’ve been know to practice more! Talk about dedication. It’s insane how much goes into DWTS, from the spray tans to the practice sessions, and that leads us to our next fact.
15. Stars Have Been Known To Lose Incredible Amounts Of Weight Thanks To The Show
Thanks to DWTS, stars such as Kirstie Alley and Kelly Osbourne have lost noticeable amounts of weight. Alley lost an astonishing 100 pounds, while Osbourne left the show 50 pounds slimmer. But a new figure isn’t all the stars have to gain from being on the show.
14. Stars Are Paid Big Bucks The Longer They Stay On The Show
The internet has gotten its hands on documents outlining what stars are paid for their appearance on DWTS, and let’s just say it’s not too shabby. The baseline is said to start at a cool $125,000, with stars making up to $345,000 if they’re able to survive to the finals. Now we know why Master P agreed to give it a go.
13. Stars Are Strictly Forbidden From Bringing Their Own Hair And Makeup Teams
This one seems a bit harsh, but DWTS has a strict rule that states stars are only allowed to use hair and makeup staff employed by the show. Some female celebs had a hard time accepting this rule, but ultimately they all agree to stick with the stylists. Hey, for $125,000 I wouldn’t care who does my makeup, either.
12. Casting Isn’t Based On Popularity Of Celebs
Surprise! Casting is not based on popularity of celebs, rather it’s based on current events. They want a cast that will guarantee high ratings (cue Ryan Lochte) and rarely, if ever, go with pitches from the public. There’s a whole system in place for how DWTS recruits celebs, and so far it’s worked for them. I mean, they are on season 23 after all.
11. Jennifer Aniston Is The Most Common Pitch From The Public
Apparently, the public is just dying to watch Ms. Aniston shake her stuff on DWTS. Deena Katz said the actress is the most common celeb for people to pitch to the show, but so far Aniston hasn’t agreed to make everyone’s dancing dreams come true. We can only await the day America’s girl-next-door decides to win our hearts—and the trophy—on DWTS.
10. Willow Shields Was The Youngest DWTS Competitor At Age 14
Willow Shields, the actress who played Primrose Everdeen in the ‘Hunger Games’ series, was the youngest competitor on the show when she was just 14-years-old. The oldest was actress Cloris Leachman at age 82
9. Pro-Dancer Derek Hough Has The Most Season Wins
Professional dancer Derek Hough has won six seasons of DWTS. I don’t know about you, but I would have my fingers crossed to be paired up with this dancing machine were I to ever compete on the show.
8. Laurie Hernandez And Ryan Lochte Are Far From The First Olympians To Compete
Following their Olympic games, Laurie Hernandez and Ryan Lochte are taking part in this season of DWTS, but they for sure aren’t the first. They follow a handful of other Olympians onto the show, such as Apolo Anton Ohno, who won season 4. Soccer player Hope Solo and boxer Sugar Ray Leonard are also in ranks of Olympians who danced their way into our hearts.
7. Costumes Are Still Being Tailored An Hour Before Showtime
As if performing in front of the judges and America wasn’t stressful enough, the dancers’ costumes aren’t completed until an hour before the show. They aren’t allowed to try on their outfits until rehearsals, meaning alterations are done minutes before they’re set to perform in said outfits. I’m sure it’s come down to crunch time more often than the producers would care to admit.
6. Judges Are Given Only Seconds To Write Their Score
Once a dance is over, the judges only have seconds to write down their scores. Of course, they already know what they plan to give each dancing duo about half way through their performance, but said they wait until the end to write it down. It wouldn’t look right to give a couple a perfect 10, only to have them completely fall on their faces at the last second.
5. Celebs Are Cast As Fill-In Dancers Just In Case Someone Is Injured
Yup, even ‘Dancing with the Stars’ has a bench team waiting! Stars are notorious for getting injured during their time on the show, so the producers have a team of celebs waiting on the “bench.” These fill-in dancers even practice and rehearse as the cast does, you know, just in case
4. Some Stars Have Suffered Severe Injuries While On The Show
From ruptured tendons to torn Achilles tendons, celebs are constantly getting injured while practicing and performing on the show. In fact, professional dancer Kym Johnson suffered a neck injury during season 12 that resulted in her temporarily having no feeling in her arms—scary! And that’s a professional dancer!
3. Holly Madison Replaced Jewel During Season 8
I’m sure we have some die-hard Jewel fans who would be sad to learn their beloved singer was replaced by former Playboy Playmade Holly Madison during season 8. Jewel had to bow out of the competition after fracturing both her tibias. I wouldn’t have been down to dance, either, Jewel.
2. Season 22 Was The Most Watched Show On Monday Primetime TV
Over 12 million viewers tuned in to watch season 22 of DWTS. Now, with Olympians, Amber Rose, Vanilla Ice and Babyface all competing this season, there’s no telling how many people will be rooting their favorite celebs to victory. And to $345,000.