The ballroom was filled with tears on Monday night as Selma Blair wrapped up her journey on “Dancing With the Stars.”
The ‘Cruel Intentions’ star, 50, has announced that she is stepping down from competitive dance performance due to health issues stemming from her ongoing battle with multiple sclerosis (MS), which she was diagnosed with in 2018.
Blair and her professional partner, Sasha Farber, performed a ‘sweet’ final dance together, a waltz to Andra Day’s ‘What the World Needs Now Is Love’, which received a perfect 40/40 from judges Len Goodman , Carrie Ann Inaba, Bruno Tonioli and Derek Hough.
“We were told just before the show started [that she was leaving]. It was a big surprise, a big shock to us, but also, it was the right thing to do in the long run for longevity,” Hough, 37, exclusively told Page Six after the show.
“But I don’t think we saw the end of Selma. She had a huge impact on the show,” he added. “One thing that impressed me the most about Selma was… .there is not a word lost in what she says. Every word is so meaningful, so powerful. And, man, what a great send-off.
Hough said he was also inspired by Blair’s “impeccable” reputation behind the scenes. The former mirrorball champion gushed about her candor with everyone from the hair and makeup team to those on the production team.
“She is so kind, so gracious, so excited, never complains. Of all the people who could possibly complain, she didn’t,” Hough explained. “She got into it because she loved it. She loved being here and she loved the people. For me, that’s very important.”
The ‘World of Dance’ alum continued, “She left her mark on this show forever, no doubt. I think what she accomplished and what she did – and the way she did it, so gracefully – it’s just perfection.”
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Hough’s sentiments were echoed by Blair’s fellow contestants, including “Bachelorette” star Gabby Windey, who told Us everyone was “in tears” because they “didn’t see it” coming.
“I think we’ve become teammates, in a way, even though we’re competing. It’s heartbreaking for many of us, but she needs to step forward,” Windey, 31, said with professional partner Val Chmerkovskiy, adding: “To be able to welcome Selma [on this show] has been so fun. She’s a great dancer, she’s an amazing, impactful performer…and off camera, she’s just a wonderful person.
Gleb Savchenko, who is paired with ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ star Shangela this season, said Blair is “just the sweetest, nicest person” he has ever met.
” She is my girlfriend ! And what an amazing thing to say, like, ‘I’m friends with Selma Blair,'” Shangela, 40, said. “Because she represents such strength, such courage, such kindness, such beauty, such talent, all in one. His presence will certainly be missed in this ballroom.
‘Jersey Shore’ star Vinny Guadagnino told Page Six that hearing the news of Blair’s exit had “ripped” his heart out.
“Not only do we love her and everything, but she danced really well, ”said Guadagnino, 34. “She killed it, like, in every aspect of the show.”
Meanwhile, singer Jordin Sparks, 32, called the actress “such a shining light”, telling us: “We love Selma, we adore her, and she will definitely be missed here.
Page Six also spoke with Blair after the show, who discussed what it was like to receive so much support from her castmates.
“It was a very emotional night for me,” she admitted. “Because it was filled with so much love for me and my love for everyone here has really, really, really returned.”
“Dancing With the Stars” returns Tuesday for “Prom Night” at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT on Disney+.
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