Is Dancing With the Stars Cancelling its Fall Season?

ABC honchos were so disappointed with Dancing With The Stars ratings this season, that, according to the New York Post, the dance competition may cancel its fall cycle, only running 1 season a year in the spring. Via New York Post

ABC may be passing on the paso doble for a while.

“Dancing With the Stars” is talking about airing just once each year, in the spring, a production source tells The Post.

“They have to figure something out,” the insider says. “Maybe change the judges. The show needs a total makeover.”

After 15 editions since 2005, the once-top-rated talent show took a beating in the ratings during its “All-Star” season, which ended last month.

The finale drew 16.7 million viewers — a huge audience by most TV standards, but down almost three million from a year ago.
ABC via Getty Images
Melissa Rycroft and Tony Dovolani won the most recent “All-Star” season.

Total viewership for the past season was off by 20 percent.

Running against the popular The Voice on NBC surely cut into DWTS ratings. DWTS will still air against the newbie singing competition in the spring. But perhaps turning the competition into a once a year event will bring in more viewers. The fickle public is bound to burn out on two cycles of The Voice a year.

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  • ReneeinCA

    I’ve always thought that a good part of the reason that Idol has had such longevity is that it is a once-a-year event. 

    And yes, probably doing some surgery  – new judges (perhaps Pauler?) might work, but I think they need some actual, you know, stars.  As it stands, the pros are better known than the “celebrities” they are dancing with.

  • Li Wright

    Tom Bergeron(?) said as much…he said a while back that they were airing too many shows….Agree!

  • LA944

     I remember when Tom B said that–I think it was pretty long while ago. And I also agree–he was absolutely right. Overkill almost always hurts in the long run. The Voice will suffer from it soon enough. I also think having DWTS twice a year lessons the amount of “stars” it can get to do the show. Instead of finding 12 celebs a yr–they have to cast 24.

    I don’t know why some of these networks don’t learn from HBO etc. They give you some quality programming and then you have to wait -sometimes quite awhile for the next season. But, it makes the show seem more special. I suppose the networks are just looking for the short term profit–I doubt they think in the long term. They make as much money as they can, cancel the show–and then premier another show.

  • Bobbi

    I’m glad the show isn’t disappearing, because I do enjoy it, but I think going to one season a year is the right choice. The pros will appreciate it too, I’m sure. They are getting burned out and right now, they’re the biggest draw the show has!

  • dabney c

    The thing about Idol, though, is that ideally, the winner is supposed to establish him/herself during the off season without the show stealing focus from their new “star”. DWTS winners, OTOH, just take their mirror-ball trophy and go home to their usual lives and jobs. So DWTS can afford to air multiple seasons more so than a show like Idol. Having said that, after 15 rounds of competition, there’s bound to be audience burnout regardless, so they may be smart to scale back to one season a year. Mind you, I’d miss it in the off-months because I adore Tom Bergeron and the cheesy 70’s era gameshow theme music. :D

  • briguyx

    ABC’s head honcho said recently that they discovered with the All Star season that the public wants to see people who can’t dance, not those that already can. So a lot will be riding on this spring season, to see if the ratings go up with a regular cast.

  • Bentley1530

    DWTS is always about the mix of talent that they book for the show and I was not crazy about the all star group.  Also the challenges got a little too gimmicky for me while at the same time, I am a little tired of seeing some of these pros.  So bring in some fresh professionals and get back to ballroom dancing.  

  • Stefan Wind

    They better not change the judging panel. The chemistry is fantastic.
    Once a year would be fine for me though. Give everyone a chance to miss it and want to come back. 

  • dabney c

    I remember season 1 when the pro dancers were all but invisible. No personalities, no talking, no contribution outside of dancing with their star. So weird.

    Speaking of the pros, anyone know which ones won’t be back next season?

  • Klaine

    16 million is still more than most show s including the voice

  • CanadianLady

    I’ve been a fan in the past but I wasn’t invested in this one. Not interested in some of the “All-stars” who clearly weren’t. Hated the gimmicky dances. Dislike the high marks when they clearly weren’t earned. I could go on. I also dislike the emphasis on shirtless guys and barely there costumes. I don’t care so much of the people aren’t all well-known. Helio was one of my favourites and I don’t follow car racing.

    I like the original concept where you see them compete with similar dances, and you have a clue what the steps/rules are, etc. I like to focus on the dancing.

  • supersonic

    The All Star season started with so much promise.  Then after all of the shenanigans and the manipulation, it ended with a whimper.  Plus, in the fall, there are way too many things on TV.  Yes, it got beat by The Voice.  But there’s also football.  Football is kicking everybody’s ass.  So, yes, they should go to one season a year. 

    Switch up the judges a bit.  Paula was a breath of fresh air when she sat in there for a week.  I thought she had great chemistry with Bruno.  Take out Carrie Ann and add her.  Or just have more guest judges, period.  I thought they were supposed to do that.  They announced something like that a couple of years ago.  The whole judging needs an overhaul, actually.

    Cast some actual stars.  Melissa Rycroft?  Not a star.

    The pros better wow with the choreography.  With Derek and Cheryl probably being gone, whoever will replace them better step up.

    Stop with the manipulation.  The whole All Star season was set up for Melissa and Tony to win.  Was it because they’re that good?  Or because of her ABC connections and her and Tony’s manager being a producer on the show?  Depends on what you think.  I’m leaning toward the former.  Either way, the All Star season has left a bad taste in the mouths of a lot of fans.  So, yes, they have work to do.

  • Susan

    Well, I didn’t watch because Tristan got the worst partner – again – and went out the first week. :(

  • Kariann Hart

    I like once a season for ALL these Reality Shows.  Less chance of burn out and maybe better ratings.  I am going to miss, “So You Think You Can Dance” as a summer diversion.  It was my second favorite show after American Idol.  It has been canceled, right?

  • ladymctech

    How about some real “stars” instead of past-tense ones or wannabees?

  • DaisyMagnolia

    No ‘real’ star will ever be oh the show.  It’s why they go to football players so often.  Someone with talent + work ethic + name recognition = A list for DWTS.   Some current TV actors may consider doing it, but they’re often too busy on their own shows to compete.

    I think going to one cycle per year would be ideal.  It would give everyone–Tom, the judges, and mostly the pros–a chance to recharge and work on other things if they want.  They would also have more time to choose a cast of stronger 12-14 stars.

    New pros may be a foregone conclusion, anyway.  Derek is gone.  Cheryl has indicated that she wants some time off.  Maks is on the fence, I think.  That leaves Kym, Karina, Anna, Chelsie, and Peta for the female pros and  Mark, Louis, Tristan, Tony, and Val for the guys.  Dmitry and Lacey could come back.  Either way, there’s room for new pros.

    I like some of the recent changes.  The trio dance is a great addition, and I enjoy seeing a number of dances that aren’t traditional ballroom but are clearly influenced by it: Argentine tango, hustle, and salsa.  The contemporary dances need to go, though.  And they need to tone down some of the cheese.  That sounds strange as I enjoy how the show embraces its Velveeta origins, but they’ve gone a bit overboard with it.  Just 2-3 steps back would make a world of difference.

  • broddy

    This may be repeating what a few have said above, but I’ve enjoyed watching DWTS for the past few years — except for this season.  I simply did not want to see the celebs who have been on previously to be on again.  It wasn’t compelling enough.  There are TONS of stars, A-list and B-list, who want to be on the show, and there is no need for recycling.  Bring on the new season!

  • Ratna12

    I was not planning to watch DWTS this past season, but I changed my mind when I heard about the All Stars. I really thought that it would be really great, … boy, was I wrong. It was strange that the All Stars was the least enjoyable
    one for me and I don’t know why.

    And I really hope that there will be less manipulation from the judges.
    Even the season of Donald Driver the judges were holding out on giving him three 10s, so that at the finale, wow, surprise, he got three 10s.

    I think several years ago, there were less manipulation, I remember when Apollo got well deserved three 10s early on.
    I just feel that the judges were NOT judging honestly lately.

  • Kariann Hart

    We know that Reality Shows have scripted moments, but they were too obvious this season.  I’d like a pro that has been on SYTYCD.  It was great seeing Dmitry, Lacey, and Chelsie cross over.

  • Nicole Overstreet

    For the past few seasons I haven’t been able to watch the show live I would always have to DVR it because of the voice coming on at the same time. Maybe going to once a year will help the show. And maybe instead of playing the show in the spring maybe move it back to a later date so it wont collide with the voice. And the show does need to make a few changes. 

  • Mary Astor

    Palin bitch ruined it for me over and over again.  Not a star, they have shows for her, Teen Mom.