All couples fight, but not all couples fight in sweaty rehearsal studios with millions of people watching. That’s something special to Dancing With the Stars. When people go from being complete strangers to spending an average of six hours together every single day, a little bit of friction is inevitable. Sometimes the DWTS spats are amusing, but sometimes they can be uncomfortable to watch. And, occasionally, as in the case of contestant Jaleel White and pro Kym Johnson during last week’s performance, the public doesn’t get to watch at all — they simply read conflicting behind-the-scenes reports instead.
More often than not, the DWTS pros and contestants form a united front, with the majority of the show's most memorable “feuds” being between the pros and the judges. But there are cameras at every rehearsal, always ready to catch a dramatic moment. Here are the five biggest pro/celeb tiffs that failed to stay behind the scenes.
5. Erin Andrews vs. Maksim Chmerkovskiy, Season 10
Season 10 (Spring 2010) was a doozy when it came to fights. Nicole Scherzinger and Derek Hough, who would go on to win the season, sparred over her intense perfectionism as an “artist”; Evan Lysacek and Anna Trebunskaya disagreed over Freestyle choreography; Jake Pavelka snapped at Chelsie Hightower over a move he did not want to do; and Edyta Sliwinska walked out on Aiden Turner after he threatened to quit. But those couples didn’t make this list — two others did, starting with the adorable love-hate relationship of Erin Andrews and Maks Chmerkovskiy, a.k.a. the Lucy and Ricky of DWTS.
Week 5 was an explosive time for Erin and Maks. While practicing their Movie Night Jive, which followed an off-week with the Tango, Maks decided that, to improve, Erin had to listen to his each and every word. “This entire week is going to be according to Maks,” he declared. Good luck with that!
Erin dared to speak out when Maks demanded silence, and he really got frustrated when she asked for an explanation of a move he had already shown her. The result? Maks jumping up and down and yelling, “I did! I did!” To top it off, Erin then got upset about her shoes — and Maks’s sarcasm — and threw one of her heels at him.
As host Tom Bergeron put it after they danced their Movie Night Jive, “You two, by the way, are so cute when you fight!” Maks instantly shot back, “Don’t tell her that!”
4. Jennifer Grey vs. Derek Hough, Season 11
Derek is considered one of the most patient and gentle teachers, but even he gets ruffled once in awhile. In a recent promotional video for the DWTS reruns now airing on the Game Show Network, Derek (almost) spilled the beans on his most difficult pairing. "Surprisingly, one of my most challenging partners was actually ... I can't get personal," he teased. "This woman drained me. I cried at home every night."
Who was he talking about? Jennie Garth? Ex-girlfriend Shannon Elizabeth? DWTS co-host Brooke Burke-Charvet? The top two “challenging” suspects were his two most recent winning partners: Nicole Scherzinger and Jennifer Grey -- we think Jennifer probably takes the cak Jennifer is probably the most
During Week 5, Jennifer and Derek had a mid-season spat over a particular move that Jennifer just couldn’t complete. "You know what, I'm not going to get it when you get angry with me," she told him. "It doesn't help."
But Derek said he wasn't angry, just frustrated. "So I have to ball everything in?” Derek countered. “Should I? Is that what you want me to do, to explode at once?" Jennifer, taken aback, replied, "You know what, you can process it however you need to. I'm saying, control your temper.” Derek seemed surprised. "My temper? That's not temper. Trust me.”
But Jennifer felt it too difficult to continue. Before leaving the rehearsal hall, she said, "I can't work like this. I'm going to take a little walk." "Seriously?" Derek sniped. "We're wasting more time." He then turned to the camera and said Jennifer took things way too personally.
Obviously, the two made amends. Jennifer and Derek took home the Season 11 Mirror Ball, and the hearts of DWTS fans the world over.
3. Hope Solo vs. Maksim Chmerkovskiy, Season 13
Like Erin and Maks — and, for that matter, Season 11’s Brandy Norwood and Maks — Hope and Maks were an attractive, competitive couple who occasionally argued. But unlike Maks's previous pairings, things with Hope and Maks got a little too dark.
The soccer star never seemed to be fully comfortable on DWTS, and things came to a head during practice for the Halloween Night Team Paso Doble routine. While three couples rehearsed together, Hope and Maks started to feel the pressure to perfect their solo dance. As the other couples watched, Maks became forceful with Hope, pushing her shoulder back in one move and whipping her around roughly. "Will you stop?" Hope pleaded. "Which part to stop, I'm not sure what to stop?" Maks replied. Hope then laughed and said, "Stop being you." Maks walked out for a minute, and Derek had to step in to teach Hope the rest of the move.
During the following week's rehearsals, Maks apologized to Hope. "Last week was ridiculous,” he said. “I will take full responsibility for being overly rough. It's one-hundred percent on me." They decided to stop being so competitive and just try to have more fun.
2. Jaleel White vs. Kym Johnson, Season 14
What’s frustrating about this fight is, unlike other rehearsal “feuds,” viewers were never shown the footage!
Hours before the Week 3 performance show, Us Weekly reported that Jaleel and Kym had a “heated” confrontation the previous week, after he accidentally stepped on her foot in rehearsals and she allegedly screamed out in pain. The story claims that Jaleel called Kym an “idiot,” and said that she was acting like a baby. Kym reportedly left the studio in tears while fellow competitor Donald Driver tried to calm Jaleel down. When that didn’t work, pro Mark Ballas allegedly confronted Jaleel. The story claimed the fight only ended after producers intervened. Jaleel and Kym went on to dance the Rumba, after which Jaleel cried in the Celebriquarium, saying he just wanted to complete what had been a very difficult week.
After the show, both Jaleel and Kym said their spat was exaggerated. They had been stressed out, the dancing duo explained, by a tough few days that included Jaleel having to deal with an ex-girlfriend’s renewed allegations of past abuse. But in the end, they said, all was well. Mark told TMZ that the tabloid report was a fabrication. Jaleel’s manager told Wetpaint Entertainment that his client was under a lot of strain about the reports involving his ex-gal pal -- not to mention “emotional” about his Most Memorable Year dance that week, which was based on Urkel’s alter-ego, Stefan. Since viewers were never shown the spat, it remains a “he said/tabloids said” situation.
1. Kate Gosselin vs. Tony Dovolani, Season 10
Tony and Kate walked out on each other on the second week of Season 10 in one of the most memorable feuds in DWTS history. While rehearsing a jive to Elton John's "I'm Still Standing," Tony and Kate experienced (to put it mildly) communication difficulties around Tony's teaching style. Kate told the camera that Tony had said she was undermining his teaching methods, but, she commented, that's not what she was trying to do. She simply felt as though he wasn't comprehending the method by which she was most comfortable learning.
"I'm a little baffled right now," Tony said. "I've become a world champion myself. I've taught world champions. I teach teachers how to teach. I've never been questioned on my teaching ever before." Kate responded, "I apologize for that, and none of that was to be taken offensively. All it was, was the fact that I just wanted to see..." Tony broke in with "So this is my fault, right? This whole thing?" Kate continued, "You're not hearing what I'm saying, and what I'm saying is..." Tony jumped in again, "I've heard you all day."
Well, Kate reached her breaking point, telling Tony, "I'm done, I'm done today." As she started walking to another part of the studio, Tony tried to get in the last word. "I've tried everything," he said. "I've been Mr. Nice Guy. I'm done." Kate then turned around, saying, "Please don't make arguments where there's none." With that, Tony said "I quit."
Tony walked out of the studio as Kate put her head in her hands, repeating "I don't get it." A short time later, an apologetic Tony returned, telling the camera that he had overreacted and felt terrible about it: "I had a weak moment where I let it get to me. I normally don't let it get to me." By the time they were eliminated in Week 5, Kate and Tony's strained relationship had been (somewhat) healed by negative critiques and low scores: In the end, nothing bonds a DWTS couple quite like shared frustration with the judges.
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