DwtS Offseason Update: 3-1-06

Even though Dancing with the Stars is in between seasons, every Wednesday, we’ll continue to post news updates on the show’s dancers, celebrities, and hosts.

This week, we start with champs Drew and Cheryl, who have been making the talk show rounds since their win on Sunday.

The couple guested on Tuesday’s View, where they were originally scheduled to perform. But Drew wasn’t feeling up to it, as he had pulled a hamstring while preparing for his dance in the DwtS finale. That, after hurting his back a few days earlier in his freestyle routine.

Barbara Walters asked Drew if the DwtS cast is paid to appear. He said that contestants got paid for every week they were on the show, but after elimination, they neither trained nor received compensation.

All of the women on The View were interested in what Drew’s wife, Lea, thought about his sexy routines with Cheryl. While Drew wished he had some good gossip to dish about how his wife had freaked out on him, Lea was always encouraging and never jealous. Cheryl admitted that she was a little nervous about Lea’s reaction at first, but that Lea would often push them to make their performances sexier.

With Lea due to give birth in four weeks, Drew was prepared to leave the show at any point in order to take her to the hospital. When the ladies suggested that his brother Nick could’ve filled in for him, Drew said that certainly would’ve lost them the show.

Also sitting in the studio audience of The View were retired professional dancers Melanie Lapatin and Tony Meredith. They run a studio in New York City and have been giving Barbara Walters lessons (for what, she didn’t say). About a year and a half ago, Melanie was given a makeover on What Not to Wear, and I’m sad to report that she has reverted to wearing all black again. Stacy London, Clinton Kelly, and I are disappointed in you, Melanie.

On Wednesday’s Tony Danza Show, Tony gave Drew a basket of goodies for his new baby, including a toddler-sized tutu and a tiny pair of tap shoes.

Drew told Tony that he’d been sure that he and Stacy (who Tony Danza insisted on calling “the tall girl”) would face off in the final two, since they had consistently earned the highest scores from the judges. But he said the victory over Jerry Rice was especially sweet, as it was payback for several losses that Rice’s 49ers had inflicted upon Drew’s beloved Cincinnati Bengals.

According to Cheryl, Drew’s posture was her biggest challenge, especially because his padded suit jackets made his shoulders look even bulkier. To counter this, the couple sewed strings inside the jacket, so they could tie it to Drew’s belt and keep it from riding up.

Drew said almost all of the celebrities were injured by the end of the season. Despite the strains and sprains, Cheryl said Drew had very few clumsy moments during practice. He only came close to dropping her once, and that was early in their training.

Although he said getting a trophy was nice, Drew jokingly wondered why ABC couldn’t include a car or a watch as part of the prize. The unexpected benefit for Drew was a chance to show the world what a great brother he has, as Nick attended nearly every show.

Other members of the DwtS cast have been chatting up talk show hosts, too.

Monday night’s edition of The Big Idea with Donny Deutsch featured Tom Bergeron, Lisa Rinna, and Harry Hamlin. Harry’s the first celebrity name being suggested for season three, but he hasn’t committed yet.

Tom said that another possibility for season three is David Carradine. This season, Carradine actually trained with Ashly because producers were afraid Master P wouldn’t show up for the first episode. That explains why Carradine was sitting at a table near the judges at the season premiere.

When asked about ABC’s decision to cut out the portion of Thursday’s show where Bruno referred to “Brokeback Mountain: The Musical” in its West Coast feed, Tom criticized the network for making a big deal out of it. He said that Drew’s gesture of covering his rear with his cowboy hat was totally innocent, and perfectly in keeping with Drew’s character.

Lisa discussed how she was cast for the second season, after she had turned down an offer to appear on the first. She ran into one of the show’s producers at a spinning class and confessed to being a “big idiot” for turning down the show. The producers considered her interest genuine, and she was given another shot.

That’s all for now. See you next week, when we’ll have an interview with one of this season’s professional dancers!