Making a move for the mirrorball! Jenna Johnson gave an update on whether husband Val Chmerkovskiy will be back in the Dancing With the Stars ballroom next season — and warned other pros to watch out.
“So, the funny thing is we actually don’t know if we’re coming back until right before the season [starts],” Johnson, 28, told Us Weekly exclusively on Monday, June 27, while promoting Kerasal Athlete’s Foot products. “But yes, I know that Val is definitely excited to come back for another season and I think that he’s in the best shape of his life right now. I’m not sure what happened to him [this year], but he is snatched.”
The So You Think You Can Dance alum gushed over her “chiseled” spouse, who has been feeling “really inspired” to hit the dance floor again. “I’m like a little like, ‘Oh wow, OK. Watch out,'” she teased. “I think he’s really excited for this next season.”
Chmerkovskiy, 36, previously hinted in November 2021 that his time on the ABC ballroom competition was “probably” coming to an end after his 17 season run. “I’ve always been very clear about coming back on the show. I love the show. I love being on it. I am so grateful for the opportunity,” he told Entertainment Tonight after he and season 30 partner Olivia Jade Giannulli were eliminated. “I have no regrets about my tenure on the show. I have no regrets about the season. I couldn’t have asked for a better partner to end it with.”
Maks Chmerkovskiy‘s brother first appeared on DWTS in season 2 in 2006, making his official competitive debut during season 13 in 2011. Val took home the mirrorball in 2015 while partnered with Rumer Willis, winning for a second time the following year with Laurie Hernandez.
While debating his future on the series, Val told ET, “There’s no burned bridges, there’s nothing but gratitude, again, with the production, with the show. I hope I’ve served the show and this show has definitely changed my life, so it’s [mutual] love and we’ll see what happens in the future.”
Later that month, the Ukrainian athlete clarified that his love for dance wasn’t going away, whether or not he was paired with a new celeb for season 31. “I don’t think anyone ever imagined that a show about celebrities partnering up with mostly Russian and Mormon ballroom dancers would be a huge hit but it is,” he said during an episode of “The Bellas Podcast” in November 2021. “For some reason, maybe two people coming together and moving as one, it’s something that’s powerful beyond the dance floor and that’s really what I want to champion. So that’s what I’m doing. … I’m just going to continue to preach the gospel of dance.”
With her husband’s DWTS tenure seemingly up in the air, Johnson asserted that she would “support him no matter what” he decided. “I think that he is the best male dancer on the show, and I can say that very confidently and proudly,” she told ET last fall. “I think that there is a lot more that we haven’t seen from him that I would love to see. … I really hope it’s not [the end] because he’s so good at dancing.”
“I’m so excited,” Johnson told Us on Monday. “I think change is scary in general, but I think it also ignites a new spark and [brings] this sort of refreshing energy. … I’m just excited to see where the show goes.”
While preparing for her own ballroom return, the Utah native is helping her feet “thrive” with Kerasal products. “I think that’s a really important part of my daily routine — especially during the season of Dancing With the Stars — is taking care of my body, taking care of my feet, doing a foot soak … anything that’s gonna help,” she explained.
With reporting by Christina Garibaldi