Tom Bergeron Reflects on Being 'Fired' from DWTS After 28 Seasons: 'I Wasn't Surprised'
During a recent appearance on the Bob Saget's Here for You podcast, Bergeron, 66, recalled being ousted from the ABC show last year alongside co-host Erin Andrews. The two were replaced by Tyra Banks ahead of season 29.
"In all candor, the show that I left was not the show that I loved," Bergeron told Bob Saget. "So at the end of the season that turned out to be my last season, I kind of knew. I took everything out of my dressing room that I really wanted. ... It was kind of obvious that we were kind of butting heads [behind-the-scenes]. It wasn't a pleasant [experience]."
"I wasn't surprised that that was my last season, so there was no blue period," he added. "Actually, I think Erin and I had more fun being fired than virtually anybody."
Bergeron had hosted the show since its debut in 2005. Andrews, 43, joined in 2014 for season 18.
Bergeron said he largely had a positive experience working on the dance competition series. But there were personnel changes in recent years, and he ultimately didn't "see eye-to-eye" with producers on how to best present the show. (In 2019, Bergeron was vocal about his displeasure after former President Donald Trump's ex-White House press secretary Sean Spicer was included in the season 28 cast.)
"They're entitled to do the show the way they think is best. And so I look back at the time I spent there with really great fondness for the vast majority of it," he told Saget. "And also there are people there on the show performing that I still care about, and I want them to have long careers. I want people to still watch it and support them and understand that sure, it's different. But, you know, there's still very talented people who were going to be on on your screens."
ABC announced Bergeron and Andrews' exit in July 2020, stating that the show was heading in "a new creative direction."
"Any show like this that has been on for many, many seasons needs to continue to evolve," DWTS executive producer Andrew Llinares said during ABC's fall press day that October, per Entertainment Tonight. "So I think changing that host is all about evolution."
"It was all about making the show feel fresh, making it feel new and make it reach out to a new audience — as well as the audience that's been there for years," he added.
Dancing with the Stars, currently in its 30th season, airs Mondays (8 p.m. ET) on ABC.