When Erin Andrews and longtime Dancing With the Stars host Tom Bergeron were unexpectedly fired from their duties on the show in July, fans were shocked. But it turns out that the viewers weren’t the only ones taken aback by the news — Andrews admitted in an interview with Extra today that she was “surprised” to get the call about her departure this past summer.
“It was a surprise,” Andrews told Extra. “I got a phone call and I answered the phone. I was like, ‘This isn’t good.’” Andrews, who joined the show as a co-host in 2014, was let go this summer with Bergeron. Both of the hosts are being replaced by former America’s Next Top Model host and creator Tyra Banks, who will take over as Dancing with the Stars host for the upcoming Season 29.
Although she and Bergeron are no longer sharing the DWTS stage, Andrews still keeps in touch with her former co-worker. “I text Tom, like once a week… and the dancers as well. That’s a family,” she said. “I danced on the show and then worked on the show for so many years, I always call it a Dancing with the Stars Mafia — once you’re in, it’s really hard to break away. That’s a tight-knit group.”
Bergeron, who hosted the show since its very first episode in 2005, has been joined by a variety of co-hosts over the years, including Lisa Canning, Samantha Harris and Brooke Burke. Andrews called her co-host her “ballroom quarterback,” adding, “He was the end-all, be-all of that show.”
As for the new era of DWTS with Banks taking over, Andrews only has good things to say about the new host. “She can nail the smizing and the walking in gowns and heels, so good for her,” she said, giving a nod to Banks’ modeling days.
ABC revealed the new cast for DWTS this morning, which includes some big names from TV this year, including Selling Sunset‘s Chrishell Stause and Tiger King‘s Carole Baskin. Check out our coverage of the full lineup, and tune in for the Season 29 DWTS premiere Monday, September 14 at 8/7c on ABC.