Kurt Warner tapped for 'Dancing With the Stars'

BY GAIL PENNINGTON
Tuesday, August 31, 2010


As rumored, former Rams and Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kurt Warner will waltz and cha cha on the new season of "Dancing the Stars." He'll join five other men and six women including Bristol Palin, 19, the daughter of former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.

The other men in the new cast are singer Michael Bolton; Mike "The Situation" Sorrentino from MTV's "Jersey Shore"; actor David Hasselhoff; former NBA forward Rick Fox; and actor-rapper Kyle Massey (Disney's "Cory in the House").

The women are "Brady Bunch" mom and musical theater star Florence Henderson; R&B singer Brandy; actress Jennifer Grey ("Dirty Dancing"); actress and comic Margaret Cho; and Audrina Patridge of MTV reality show "The Hills."

Warner, wearing a plaid sport jacket, was announced by "DWTS" hosts Tom Bergeron and Brooke Burke during a break in the show "Bachelor Pad" Monday night. ABC said of Warner:

Kurt Warner is the first quarterback ever to participate in “Dancing with the Stars.” In 1999 he emerged from obscurity to lead the St. Louis Rams to a victory in Super Bowl XXXIV. In that same year, Warner was named the NFL and Super Bowl Most Valuable Player. As the ringleader of the “Greatest Show on Turf,” he led the Rams to two additional playoff appearances – including another Super Bowl."

Senior producer and head of casting Deena Katz told the Los Angeles Times that Warner was the first person signed for the season. "He was playing until recently, so he couldn’t be on it," Katz is quoted as saying. "Kurt is someone I’ve been dying to have. I’ve been wanting a quarterback from the beginning. But he retired and I said, 'I’m gonna shoot for the moon and get the MVP Super Bowl champion.'"

ABC described Palin as "Alaska's most famous daughter." Bergeron asked her on air what her mother, the former Republican vice presidential candidate, thought of her going on the show. "She's excited for me. She knows it's going to be hard work," Palin said. Will viewers be seeing Sarah Palin in the ballroom? "Hopefully," Bristol said.

The new season of "Dancing With the Stars" debuts with a two-hour episode Monday, Sept. 20. The celebrity-pro pairings will be announced that night.