Showrunner confirms his exit

By Kelly Connolly
August 19, 2015 at 12:00 PM EDT
Adam Taylor/ABC via Getty Images

The last “10 from Len” goes to Dancing With the Stars itself: After 10 years as a judge, Len Goodman is officially stepping down.

“Len will not be returning as a judge this season on Dancing With the Stars due to his schedule as a judge on Strictly Come Dancing in the U.K. and the birth of his new grandson,” showrunner Rob Wade said in statement. “He still might be involved in the season at some capacity, but we will have to wait and see. We are planning on having great guest judges for some shows to join Bruno [Tonioli], Carrie Ann [Inaba] and Julianne [Hough], and I’m sure we will see Len in the ballroom again soon.”

The news comes as confirmation of Goodman’s December announcement that he planned to step down. “I’ve got my wife, I’ve got my son, my mother is still alive and she’s in hospital — I’ve had virtually no time to go and visit her,” Goodman said. “Dancing Wth the Stars, next year is their 10th year … so I think that’s a nice place to stop.”

But while one familiar face steps away, another is returning: EW revealed exclusively on Tuesday that pro Karina Smirnoff is making her return to the ballroom. The full slate of season 21 pros was announced on Good Morning America on Wednesday.

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