“Dancing With the Stars” Season 19 premiere two weeks from today with former pro dancer Julianne Hough now sitting at the judge’s table. This apparently doesn’t sit well with one of this season’s professional dancers according to Latin Post on Aug. 31. It seems there is concern over whether or not Julianne can remain unbiased when judging her brother, five-time champion, Derek Hough.
Karina Smirnoff is one of the competing pros this season. She thinks it is possible that Julianne could give preferential treatment to her brother. "I think she is a great girl. I've known her for many years," Smirnoff said in an interview with Us Weekly. "I think that she is wonderful, gorgeous and talented, but I don't know if it's ethical that she is judging while her brother is competing."
She isn’t singling the new judge out. She thinks anyone in a similar situation would face the same conflict of interest. "I may be the most fair person in the world, but if my mom is dancing and she trips, I would be like, 'Well, I didn't see that,'" she said. "That is my mother, and I will go stand by her side and support her regardless."
Hough has already talked about her return to the show but as a judge. Last week she said she isn’t doing this to help her brother or any of the other pros on the popular reality TV show.
"Derek has been known to be very good with his partnerships, but it's not about my brother, nor is it about [competing dancers] Cheryl [Burke] or Mark [Ballas]," she said. "It's about the partnership and the celebrity who is dancing."
Hough was a bit acidic in her two earlier guest judge appearances. Each time she took jabs at the professional dancers that appeared to rub the wrong way. On the first occasion, she called out Mark Ballas for upstaging his partners. Last season, she accused eventual Season 19 champion Maks Chmerkovskiy of “phoning in” his performance during a week where pros and celebs were supposed to switch partners.
While many rumors swirl about whom the celebrity contestants are, fans won’t have to wait much longer. The official announcement comes Thursday, Sept. 4. The premiere of “Dancing Wirth the Stars” Season 19 airs soon afterward, on Monday, Sept 15.