Contrary to reports, the producers "did know ahead," says a source

By Mike Fleeman
April 08, 2011 06:55 PM
Michael Tran/FilmMagic

Karina Smirnoff will be the first pro on Dancing with the Stars to pose nude in Playboy, but the news didn’t come as a surprise to her bosses.

Despite reports that producers angrily felt she hurt the program’s image, a source close to the show says, “They did know ahead of time and they still gave her one of the best pairings.”

Smirnoff, 32, is dancing with point leader Ralph Macchio. Her photo shoot was done before the season started and will appear in the May issue of Playboy.

Although no other Dancing pro has posed for the magazine, Smirnoff is not the first from the show to do so.

Co-host Brooke Burke and competitors including Kendra Wilkinson, Lisa Rinna, Pamela Anderson, Holly Madison and Denise Richards have appeared in Playboy.