Matt Walsh Leaves ‘Dancing with the Stars’ as ABC Considers Delaying Premiere
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Matt Walsh has decided to “pause” his involvement with this season of Dancing with the Stars until the writers’ strike is over. The WGA has been picketing the show’s rehearsals, leading ABC to consider delaying the Season 32 premiere.
Matt Walsh Leaves Dancing with the Stars
Since news spread that DWTS is a WGA-covered show, many have called for the participating celebrities to step away in solidarity with the writers’ strike. Matt Walsh, who is known for his role on the HBO comedy Veep, is a member of the WGA himself.
Walsh was announced as part of the Season 32 cast earlier this month, as he was partnered with pro dancer Koko Iwasaki. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Walsh has decided to step away from the show as long as the strike is ongoing.
“I was excited to join the show and did so under the impression that it was not a WGA show and fell under a different agreement,” Walsh explained in a statement. “This morning when I was informed by my union, the WGA, that it is considered struck work I walked out of my rehearsal. I have been and will always stand with my union members of the WGA, SAG and DGA.”
Walsh went on to say that he hopes “for a speedy and fair resolution, and to one day work again with all the wonderful people I met at DWTS who tolerated my dancing.”
ABC Could Delay the Show’s Premiere
It was reported earlier this week that DWTS Season 32 would still be going forward despite being a WGA-covered show. The series reportedly employs one WGA writer out of a 500-person crew. Although much of the show is unscripted, this writer apparently works with the show’s hosts.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, striking writers have been picketing outside the show’s rehearsal space this week. Sources say that ABC is now considering a postponement of the season premiere, which is currently scheduled for Tuesday, September 26.
It wouldn’t be the first show to do so. After receiving backlash for starting a new season of her talk show without writers, Drew Barrymore chose to halt production. The new season of The Jennifer Hudson Show has also been delayed.