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Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Dancing With the Stars cast announced

A supermodel, two familiar TV actors, several athletes, a country music star and a woman with one leg (I kid you not!) are among the cast of this spring’s Dancing With the Stars. Here’s the list of stars who will be shaking and shimmying on March 19, when the show kicks off with a 2-hour premiere on ABC.

Laila Ali
Daughter of the legendary boxer Muhammad Ali, Laila Ali began her boxing career in 1999. She had several wins before retiring earlier this year. Will she be able to KO the competition on the dance floor? She’ll be dancing with Maksim Chmerkovskiy, who returns for his third season.

Billy Ray Cyrus
Although he no longer sports his trademark mullet, country music star Billy Ray Cyrus is still recognizable. He currently stars in the Disney Channel's Hannah Montana with his daughter, Miley. Cyrus is best known for his 1992 hit, Achy Breaky Heart. Cyrus may be one of the crowd favorites, as he is personable and fun. He’s also an endless source of jokes for the hosts, due to the most famous mullet in history. Cyrus’ partner is Karina Smirnoff, who returns for her second season.

Heather Mills
Most famous for her marriage/separation from former Beatle Paul McCartney, Mills is throwing her leg into the dancing competition. Despite the bad press she’s received lately due to the divorce, Mills may become an audience sentimental favorite because of her physical disadvantage. She enters the competition with a prosthetic leg, below the knee on her left leg. Mills lost part of the leg in an accident. She is currently a goodwill ambassador for the United Nations. Her partner is Jonathan Roberts, who returns for his third season

Clyde Drexler
Former NBA player Clyde Drexler had game as a shooting guard for the Houston Rockets. Drexler won an Olympic gold medal in 1992 and an NBA championship in 1995 and is a member of the Basketball Hall of Fame. At 6 feet 7 inches, he may be the tallest contestant to ever foxtrot across the Dancing With the Stars floor. Drexler’s partner is Elena Grinenko, who returns for her second season.

Joey Fatone
You’ll remember him from the boy band ‘N Sync and his appearance in the box office hit, My Big Fat Greek Wedding. Fatone is no stranger to dance moves, and his boy band skills will come in handy in the competition. It worked for Drew Lachey. Fatone will be dancing with Kym Johnson, who returns for her second season.

Shandi Finnessey
After her reign as Miss USA 2004, Finnessey became a TV host for the Game Show Network. If she gets booted early, Tom Bergeron had better watch his back. Newcomer Brian Fortuna will be her professional dance partner.

Leeza Gibbons
She once had her own talk show, aptly titled, Leeza. The show ran from 1994-1999. Gibbons has remained active in entertaining reporter, doing appearances for Entertainment Tonight and Extra. She teams up with Tony Dovolani who returns for his third season.

Paulina Porizkova
One of the most famous supermodels in the 1980s, Porizkova is most well known for doing the cover of the Sport’s Illustrated swimsuit issue in 1984 and 1985. Oh, and there was that spread in Playboy magazine. The Czech native is paired with Alec Mazo, who returns for his second appearance.

Ian Ziering
Beverly Hills 90210
fans will never forget Ziering’s portrayal of Steve Sanders, the friendly cutie on the popular teen drama. According to Ziering’s bio, he has acted in “a variety of television and film roles” since the end of the zip-code show. He’s my sentimental favorite. Let’s hope Dylan, Brandon and Kelly come to cheer him on. Ziering is dancing with my favorite DWTS professional, two-time defending champion, Cheryl Burke, who returns for her third season.

Vincent Pastore
Vincent Pastore
is best known for his role as Salvatore "Big Pussy" Bonpensiero on The Sopranos. He apparently also hosts a show on Sirius satellite radio. (Someone please tell me what topics Pastore covers in that show!) Pastore is a Bronx native and also starred in the mafia genre films Goodfellas and Gotti. (Um, Len, you may want to go easy on this fella, if you want to keep your kneecaps.) Pastore is dancing with Edyta Sliwinska, the only professional dancer to participate in all four seasons.

Apolo Anton Ohno
is a two-time Olympic gold medal winner in speed skating. He has earned five Olympic medals in short-track speed skating. He’s obviously a master at footwork, but will it be enough to bring home the gold in dancing? Julianne Hough teams with Ohno in her first appearance.


dancingqueen said...

Thanks, Jen, for getting this up so quick. "Steve" and Cheryl. Yay!

Anonymous said...

I am upset that Ashley Delgroso is not a profesional dancer this year! Where is Ashley Tube Talk girl?

tube talk girl said...

I'll have news on Ashley later today. Stay tuned!

supermomma said...

I dont understand why Heather Mills would be picked right now to be on the show. That is crazy. I will see how it all starts out before I pick my favorite. I agree though tube talk girl for sentimental reasons about Ian, go 90210!

rachel said...

Maybe Heather is trying to improve her image and saw this as a way to become America's sweetheart. She's really taking a beating in the tabloids over this messy divorce...

belinda said...

Thanks for putting up the info. It's an excellent compilation and it's the best detail I've found on the net so far. Your comments make it all the more interesting.

Heather Mills? Why would she do this now?

I will agree with one other thing I've read about this line up: why is the same formula being followed again and again? Boy band member, bald black athlete, etc. I do like the addition of the speed skater, tho. Very cool.

tube talk girl said...

Great point about the formula, Belinda. Hmmm....maybe they want to keep doing what they're doing because it's working so well in the ratings...i.e. the athletes pull in the sports fans, the tv stars pull in the TV fans, the musicians pull the music fans, thus lots of fans who maybe wouldn't normally watch the tube! Just my guess...

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