"I didn't realize how physically demanding it would be," says the Sopranos actor

By Brian Orloff
Updated February 28, 2007 01:45 PM

Vincent Pastore will not appear on ABC’s Dancing With the Stars when the hit show begins its fourth season on March 19, the network announced Wednesday. After one week of training, the 60-year-old actor said the strenuous nature of the competition was just too much.

“When I initially committed to joining Dancing with the Stars I didn’t realize just how physically demanding it would be for me,” Pastore said in a statement. “Unable to put forth my best effort, I felt it appropriate to step aside and give someone else the opportunity.”

He added, “I wish my partner, Edyta [Sliwinska] and the other dancers the best of luck.”

Producers of the show harbor no ill will against the actor, who is best known for his work on The Sopranos. “Dancing With the Stars is physically demanding and it pays to know your limits,” the show’s executive producer, Conrad Green, said in a statement. “We respect his decision.”

The fourth season of the hit show features a diverse cast, including Heather Mills, Billy Ray Cyrus and former ‘N Sync member Joey Fatone.

Mills recently told Extra that she’s anticipating the challenge, joking, “I’m quite happy to be thrown around and hopefully my leg will stay on.” Mills, who wears a prosthetic leg added, “It’s very unlikely my leg is going to fly off, although it would be quite funny. I’ll have a strap on which I wouldn’t normally in every day life.”