We only have a little less than a month to go before the season premiere of Dancing With the Stars season 17 -- can you believe it? And as much as we're all on pins and needles waiting to hear who will be part of the new cast, we're also curious about which pros and judges are planning on returning too.
Let's face it -- no matter how amazeballs the contestants are, the judges and pro dancers can really make or break the show. (Just look at what happened when Simon Cowell left American Idol.)
As far as the pros go, they're all great dancers, but some are simply more entertaining than others. I won't lie, I was super bummed out when Maksim Chmerkovskiy didn't return last season, as he's always been one of my favorites.
And now the news just broke that another beloved pro has opted not to give us an encore appearance on season 17.
Kym Johnson just announced that she's leaving DWTS to take another "amazing work opportunity" back in her homeland of Australia -- so looks like we won't have the pleasure of seeing her this time around.
Ugh. I always liked Kym. She's smart, funny, and always patient and kind to her celebrity partners, so it's definitely a shame to see her go. And unfortunately, she might not be the only pro to make an exit.
Derek Hough is apparently still up in the air. Don't even get me started on what a dip the new season will take if he doesn't return. You gotta have him if Maks isn't around.
But the good news is that there are quite a few DWTS pros who are returning, including Cheryl Burke, Peta Murgatroyd, Louis Van Amstel, Sharna Burgess, and most likely Karina Smirnoff too. Whew. At least we're not losing most of the cool crowd.
And I guess that brings us to the judges. Carrie Ann Inaba and Bruno Tonioli are both confirmed to be coming back for season 17, though we're not sure about Len Goodman yet. (Don't go, Len! We love you!)
I suppose we really won't know for sure who will and will not be taking the ballroom by storm for the new season -- but let's just hope the news is good from here on out so the whole show doesn't go down the tubes!
Are you upset that Kym is leaving DWTS?
Image via ABC