The backlash has been fierce and swift regarding Sean Spicer, former press secretary in the Trump White House, who will compete on the next season of ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars.’
Soon after the announcement was made on “Good Morning America’ on Wednesday, “DWTS’ host Tom Bergeron tweeted that he had spoken with producers months ago about casting and thought they’d agreed that this season should “be a joyful respite from our exhausting political climate and free of inevitably divisive bookings from ANY party affiliations.
“… A decision was made to, as we often say in Hollywood, ‘go in a different direction,’ ‘ he continued.
Bergeron was just the first critical shot across the ballroom. The pile-on is still happening and likely will continue until the show premieres or until he is “uncast.’
Spicer, who worked in the administration for six months, was under fire during his tenure for lying about the size of Trump’s inaugural crowd among other things.
Angry commenters said Spicer’s casting was “nomalizing’ him, others said it was a “slap in the face,’ anothers suggested the show change its name to “Dancing With Liars.’
It only got worse after Variety revealed that it could be quite the payday for Spicer, citing sources that said contestants receive $125,000 for the show’s rehearsal period and first two weeks. If they live to see Week 3 and beyond the salary goes up each week with the maximum available to be earned just under $300,000.
Oddsmakers at BetOnline don’t have a lot of hope Spicer will make it past the first couple weeks. The show premieres Sept. 16.
At one point #BoycottDWTS was trending on Twitter.
The tweeter, Scott Dworkin, is the co-founder of the Democratic Coalition Against Trump and host of the podcast “Dworkin Report.’
Some of the backlash splashed on fellow contestant Karamo Brown of “Queer Eye’ who defended Spicer calling him “a good guy’ on “Access Hollywood.’ He later tweeted he was “excited to sit down w/ him and engage in a respectful conversation. Only way things get better is if we try to educate those who have different POV than us.’
The show’s remaining cast is model Christie Brinkley, actor James Van Der Beek, former Supreme Mary Wilson, “Bachelorette’ Hannah Brown, NFL player Ray Lewis, NBA star and ex-husband of Khloe Kardashian Lamar Odom, TV star Kel Mitchell, “Office’ co-star Kate Flannery, country singer Lauren Alaina and former Fifth Harmony member Ally Brooke.
Spicer, speaking to Mediaite and The Hollywood Reporter, said he hopes the show is a “politics-free zone’ and that “this is an opportunity to have some fun.’
“My hope is that at the end of the season, (host) Tom (Bergeron) looks back on this and realizes what a great example it was of being able to bring people of really diverse backgrounds together to have fun with each other, engage in a real civil and respectful way, and maybe show millions of Americans how we can get back to that kind of interaction,” according to a statement in USA Today.
BetOnline is offering odds on the show with only one specific to the former Trump staffer regarding whether he will utter the president’s name.
The bets are:
Odds to Win Dancing With The Stars
Ray Lewis +400
James Van der Beek +450
Karamo Brown +550
Ally Brooke +600
Kel Mitchell +600
Lauren Alaina +700
Christie Brinkley +1200
Mary Wilson +1200
Hannah Brown +1400
Kate Flannery +1400
Lamar Odom +2500
Sean Spicer +5000
Sean Spicer to Say Trump in Episode 1 DWTS
Who Will be Eliminated First
Lamar Odom -200
Ray Lewis +150