Len Goodman may have passed away, but ‘Dancing With The Stars’ ensures his amazing legacy lives on.
Goodman joined the dance show in 2005 and had a good run until his retirement in November 2022 to spend more time with his family in Britain. The star finally breathed his last in April this year at the age of 78, after a lifetime of outstanding achievements.
‘DWTS’ renames Mirror Ball Trophy in honor of Len Goodman
Executive producer of “Dancing With the Stars” revealed Conrad Green USA TODAY yesterday that contestants on the popular dance show will now compete for the Len Goodman Mirrorball Trophy. The producer announced plans to unveil the new, redesigned trophy during Tuesday’s premiere, where they will pause to pay their final respects. He said:
“The Len Goodman Mirrorball Trophy will now be lifted on ‘Dancing With the Stars’ like the Vince Lombardi Trophy will be lifted at the Super Bowl.”
According to the producer, the show is intended to make Goodman an essential and permanent fixture and “always remind people of the importance” of the late “DWTS” head judge.
Green went on to say that Tuesday’s memorial show will be an emotional and moving moment. He added, “Len loves this show and will always be there looking down on us.”
Green praised the late Goodman’s keen eye for detail and incredible knowledge of dance, which contributed to the credibility and reputation of the famous dance competition. He said he brought so much respect to the show, and that the “dancers always wanted to know what Len thought of their performance.”
Well, Tuesday’s tribute won’t be the last, as Green shared that another tribute for Goodman would be organized later this season with a journey through his career development. The show includes video tributes from friends, colleagues and family and performances by dancers.
He also clarified that the decision to pay tribute to his life with the Mirror Ball Trophy and the new cast is “appropriate for a season that is a bit of a reboot.”
The ballroom champion died after a long battle with cancer
Before his painful death in April this year, the former ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ judge was battling bone cancer. The former judge had been hospitalized in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, for a terminal illness six months after his retirement.
Goodman died at the age of 78, just a few hours earlier than 79, surrounded by his family in a hospice in Kent, England. His representative shared:
“I can confirm that he passed away peacefully this weekend, surrounded by his family. A much-loved husband, father and grandfather who will be deeply missed by family, friends and all who knew him.”
The longtime judge is survived by his wife, son and two grandchildren, and he even predicted he would die weeks after retiring from DWTS. According to the explosionGoodman referenced a similar pattern between himself and his late father in December 2022, who also coincidentally passed away at the age of 79.
The ballroom champion reportedly said: “My dad had the right idea. He loved gardening and suffered a stroke while in the garden. He was 79, so if I go my father’s way, it will be next year.”
Since his death, tributes and messages of goodwill have poured in from his colleagues, friends and fans around the world, and he has served as a judge at shows. Craig Revel Horwood wrote:
“I just woke up to the sad news that my wonderful colleague and dear friend Len Goodman has passed away. My heart and love go out to his sweet Sue and family. Len Goody Goodman is what I always called him, and “It’s a ten from Len & seveeeern” will stay with me forever. RIP Len.”
Former ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ judge Alesha Dixon sent her condolences to Goodman’s family, describing him as a ‘true gentleman and one of a kind’.
The star went on to say that Goodman always made her feel welcome and that her time on the show was a wonderful experience. Goodman was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2009 and recovered after surgery in a London hospital.