New DWTS co-host Alfonso Ribeiro revealed that he spoke with former host Tom Bergeron before accepting the job to host alongside Tyra Banks.
Alfonso Ribeiro revealed that he spoke with Tom Bergeron before accepting the gig to co-host Dancing With The Stars alongside Tyra Banks. DWTS returns for season 31 on Monday, September 19, streaming on Disney+, the show’s new home after it aired for 30 seasons on ABC. Sixteen celebrities are on DWTS season 31, with the star-studded cast including Wayne Brady, Selma Blair, Jordin Sparks, and Teresa Giudice. The stars are paired with professional dancers who will guide them throughout the competition. DWTS will air on Disney+ live, becoming the first series to air live on a streaming platform.
In July, Alfonso Ribeiro announced that he would join DWTS season 31 as a co-host, joining Tyra, who has hosted the last two seasons by herself. Tom hosted the first 28 seasons of DWTS, having numerous co-hosts beside him, including Lisa Canning, Samantha Harris, Brooke Burke-Charvet, and Erin Andrews. In 2020, Tom revealed DWTS had fired him as host, and Tyra was announced shortly after as his replacement. It was a very unpopular decision with DWTS fans as Tom was considered a staple of the show. In addition to DWTS, Alfonso also previously succeeded Tom as host of America’s Funniest Home Videos.
In an interview with Us Weekly, Alfonso shared that he talked to Tom when he was offered the co-hosting gig on DWTS. He said that Tom gave him the “same advice” as he did when Alfonso took over on AFV, which was to “be you.” Given Tom’s rocky relationship with DWTS since his exit, Alfonso said, “I wanted to talk to him as a friend. I wanted to let him know how it went down [with] all the love and respect that I have for Tom.” He added that he has “respect” for Tom.
Alfonso also discussed the process of being hired on DWTS. He explained that it was a quick process as there was “no hesitation” and it was “a very simple yes.” Alfonso said, “It’s going to be a blast for me to kind of be back in the ballroom with all of my favorite people in the world,” expressing his excitement to return to DWTS. He also added that executive producer Conrad Green, returning to DWTS after an eight-year absence, is “bringing back such a great feel and energy to the show.”
Alfonso is regarded as one of the best celebrities to ever compete on DWTS, as he won the mirrorball trophy in season 19 with pro Witney Carson. Alfonso filled in for Tom as host during season 21 when he was mourning the passing of his father, so it’s only fitting that Alfonso joins DWTS as a co-host. While no one will be able to capture Tom’s hosting magic, Alfonso is an excellent choice to host alongside Tyra, and it’s another reason for fans to be excited about DWTS season 31.
Dancing With the Stars premieres Sept. 19 on Disney+.