Who says all Hollywood breakups are bad?
Holly Madison found out that she had been selected to fill injured Jewel’s spot on DWTS from none other than her ex, Hugh Hefner.
“I called her and gave her the news on Monday,” Hefner told PEOPLE at the launch of Bridget’s Sexiest Beaches, Girls Next Door alum Bridget Marquardt‘s new show on the Travel Channel. “She had a week to prepare, less then a week.”
Despite the time crunch, Hefner, who hosted the launch at the Playboy Mansion, thought Madison did “a spectacular job” adding, “I’m very, very proud of her.”
Hefner isn’t the only one who is proud. Her Girls Next Door costars Marquardt and Kendra Wilkinson also gushed about Madison’s abilities.
“I think that fact that she’s had ballroom dancing classes before and was a cheerleader in high school, I think that will bring a lot to the table,” said Marquardt. “I know she has tenacity.I know she’ll stick with it and give it her all.”
Wilkinson suggested Madison’s salsa dancing experience will help the “quick learner” stay in the competition.”I think get on her and think she doesn’t know how to dance — but hip-hop dances she needs to work on, but ballroom dancing she’s great at, she has great feet.”
Expect to see the former entourage lend their support at a live DWTS taping. All intend on attending future shows, and Wilkinson even planned on going to Madison’s debut but was busy wedding planning with fiance, Hank Baskett so she “You Tubed” the performance. Wilkinson even joked that she was “jealous” of Madison and would welcome her own shot at Dancing‘s coveted disco ball in the future.
“It’s remarkable when you think about, the beginning of that relationship with all three of the girls and the beginning of the television show and then to have it all come to with everyone I’m so proud of them,” added Hefner, who admitted he voted for Madison “many times.” — Michelle Ward Tiffany Rose/WireImage