I enjoy Dancing With The Stars, and certainly enjoy the work of Dan MacPherson on it, but I’m no obsessive. I enjoyed the on-screen relationship he shared with former host Sonia Kruger, and Sonia’s sassiness and quick wit helped make the show the success it is today and when she left the show, the big question was always going to be who would replace her.

Today’s announcement that The X Factor Australia judge and former Spice Girl Mel B will take over the co-host role is a disappointing one. There is a myriad of other talent available within the network alone (Natalie Bassingthwaite or Fifi Box, anyone?!) and it does offer the question regarding international “stars” being cast in roles that would be better filled by locals. One season as a dancer on the American version does not a Dancing host make, so for this commentator at least Mel B has a mountain to climb to prove she was the right choice. At least the inclusion of Kerri-Anne Kennerley should make for an entertaining season. From the press release:

Channel Seven today announced Mel B will join Daniel MacPherson as co-host for the new season of Dancing With The Stars.

Mel will join Dan on the DWTS staircase and be in charge of the backstage green room action, when the show returns to Seven soon. A contestant on the US Dancing With The Stars, in 2007, Mel made it to the Grand Final with her dancing prowess.

“Doing Dancing With The Stars in America changed me,” Mel said. “I’ve danced all my life, and, of course, with the Spice Girls, but there was something so intoxicating about learning to dance in such a classic, trained way. It was intense, but I loved every moment. I’m still annoyed I didn’t win!
“As any contestant on DWTS will tell you, it does change your life. I will be bringing my experiences to the show, and will be very protective of this year’s group.”

Mel made her regular Aussie TV debut last year, as a judge on The X Factor, winning over audiences with her ‘Scary Spice’ persona. Mel will return to The X Factor, when it launches later this year on Seven.

Seven’s Head of Production Brad Lyons said: “Mel is the perfect addition to the new season of Dancing With The Stars. She has lived and breathed the show, when she was a contestant in the US, and she’ll know exactly what each of this year’s contestants will be going through. Mel and Dan will be a brilliant coupling, as hosts. And Mel won’t hold back with the judges. Expect some fireworks.”

Dancing With the Stars is the smash-hit BBC Worldwide format that has been sold to 40 countries. It is a Freehand production for Channel Seven. Announcements on the 2012 contestant line-up will be made over the coming weeks. Dancing With The Stars returns soon to Channel Seven.