Dr. Fauci, Carole Baskin… Who Will Join ‘DWTS’ Next Season?

Dr. Fauci, Carole Baskin… Who Will Join ‘DWTS’ Next Season?

Is “Dancing with the Stars” paging Dr. Anthony Fauci?

The giant headline today is that the COVID-19 czar who just testified before Congress this week is at the top of the “DWTS” wishlist to join the ballroom battle this fall!

A show source told, “Dr. Fauci has become a national hero in the last few months, leading the charge for keeping Americans safe at the height of COVID-19. He became not only one of our most trusted faces on television, but also a man viewers looked to as an inspiration. And of course he could be good for ratings. Like Sean Spicer, he is a lightning rod.”

The insider continued, “So it was a natural step for show executives to reach out to him. Obviously they are aware that he has work responsibilities, but given that the show is likely to be recorded remotely it allows him the opportunity to train and dance in Washington.”

It doesn’t look like Dr. Fauci will be joining. A National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases spokesperson told the paper, “Dr. Fauci has not received a formal invitation from ‘Dancing with the Stars.’ Dr. Fauci, while flattered, would respectfully decline.”

The show source responded to the news saying, “The producers will be sad to hear he's not interested, but they still hold out hope he will change his mind.”

Dr. Fauci isn’t the only name that popped up, says “DWTS” is also considering “Tiger King” star Carole Baskin, former Bachelorette Kaitlyn Bristowe, CNN's Chris Cuomo, Paris Jackson and Vince Neil.

Last month, judge Bruno Tonioli told “Extra’s” Terri Seymour his top pick would be Meghan Markle. “She would be great. It would make her look accessible and funny, it would be great.”

Meanwhile, the insider says due to the coronavirus there are no plans to film the show in front of a live audience, adding, “Currently, with no vaccine, it is likely that the performers will pair together in limited quarantine, and then do their live performances via a video link. That is the safest option considered and allows the show to run in full until the final.”

The source added, “Judges, too, will either be remotely present or perhaps attend in a socially distanced studio.”

Bruno told Terri of shooting without an audience, “I’m sure if you can recreate the sense of excitement, I’m sure it is possible.”

Billy Bush also spoke with host Tom Bergeron last month, who said they hoped the show would be back next season. He explained, “It is hard to imagine right now a scenario with 700 people in an audience and 24 sweaty dancers can all be in the same room; we’ll see if some variation of that is concocted.”