Len Goodman Exit From ‘Dancing With The Stars’ After Finalist Double Elimination

Len Goodman announced that he will be leaving Dancing With the Stars after season 31 during the Monday, November 14, episode.

His grand finale. “This will be my last season judging on Dancing With the Stars. I’ve been with the show since it started in 2005 and it has been a huge pleasure to be part of such a wonderful show, but I’ve decided I would like to spend more time with my grandchildren and family back in Britain,” Goodman, 78, revealed. “I cannot thank you enough, the Dancing With the Stars family, it’s been such a wonderful experience for me and I’m looking forward so much to next week’s finale.”

The professional dancer’s speech received a standing ovation from the audience. His fellow judges — Carrie Ann Inaba, Derek Hough and Bruno Tonioli — stood up to hug him. Cohost Tyra Banks referred to the England native as “a living legend.” Goodman has served as the reality competition series’ head judge since season 1 and has participated in all but two seasons.

The Strictly Come Dancing alum has been called out for blunt criticism during his DWTS tenure. Last month, pro Koko Iwasaki told Us Weekly that she thought Goodman’s feedback for her partner, Vinny Guadagnino, was “a little harsh.” However, Guadagnino, 35, thought the comments were fair game.

“I messed up, like, a couple of my steps in the beginning … I know that, I’m not denying that at all,” the Jersey Shore: Family Vacation star told Us. “I’m happy that we recovered and kept going [because] it was still a fire dance, you know, And we’ve done it so many times, start to finish, obviously. … I’m trying not to beat myself up over being in last place.”

The MTV personality added that the head judge could score “however he wants to.” He and Iwasaki, 25, were eliminated during the Monday, November 7, episode.

Goodman sat out season 29 of DWTS in 2020. That same year, he confirmed that he’d had a brush with skin cancer. The Melanoma Fund, a British nonprofit, shared a photo of the Holiday of My Lifetime alum pointing to a bandage on his forehead.

“The ex-BBC Strictly Come Dancing judge was playing a few rounds with our ambassador Paul Way at The Grove — a Sun Protection Accredited club — and revealed he has just had skin cancer removed. He wanted us to use this image to inspire others to take the issue seriously,” the Melanoma Fund wrote via Facebook at the time.

The emotions were running high at the “Dancing With the Stars” semifinals. In addition to the routines, the show included a big announcement, with head judge Len Goodman revealing that this will be his final season. Goodman, 78, who has been part of the show since its 2005 debut, will be going back to the U.K. to be with his family. His last episode will be next week’s finale, where he will join the final four pairs as they battle for the mirrorball.

However, when the two-hour episode began on Monday night, six pairs remained, with each dancing two routines before the double elimination.

Charli D’Amelio and Mark Ballas have been a top contender all season long, but during rehearsals, she struggled, admitting that it was tough to perform following her mom’s elimination last week. Still, she channelled all her emotion into the routines, pulling off two perfect scores.

“That was perfection on top of perfection,” judge Carrie Ann Inaba said after their first dance. “That was beyond spectacular. I just want to thank you because you’ve done this journey with such grace.”

Goodman said that the dance “literally took my breath away” and he found himself speechless, adding, “No words of mine can sum up how good I thought that was.” In fact, Bruno Tonioli said that it wasn’t only the best Viennese waltz of the season, but of all-time.

Their second dance also left the judges in awe, with Inaba coming out from behind the desk to hug them both. “That routine was absolutely iconic,” Derek Hough added.

The other pair who received a perfect score for both routines was Gabby Windey and Val Chmerkovskiy. For the first time, she got emotional abut her public breakup but said she felt very lucky to have her partner by her side. “Val makes it easy; he’s such a great friend and such a great partner,” she shared after her first dance.

At the end of the night, the couple with the overall lowest score, Trevor Donovan and Emma Slater, were immediately sent home. The other pairs in the bottom were Gleb Savchenko and Shangela and Daniel Durant and Britt Stewart, with the judges being able to save one. Ultimately, Shangela was saved, eliminating Durant.

The “Dancing With the Stars” finale airs on Disney+ Monday, Nov. 21.

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