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As the cast of the new season of Dancing with the Stars is revealed, one cast member is notably missing from the list – pro dancer Maksim Chmerkovskiy.
Although it had been previously reported that Chmerkovskiy was leaving the show, he’s now explaining why he did, People reports.
"I just want to set the record straight to all of my amazing fans that I will unfortunately not be returning for this season of Dancing with the Stars," Chmerkovskiy said.
"I've been a pro dancer on the show for about seven years now and am eager to explore other opportunities that have been made possible because of Dancing with the Stars,” he continued. “I'm going to take this time to dive into producing and acting, while fulfilling my sponsorship obligations."
Chmerkovskiy isn’t the only popular pro dancer missing from the list – Chelsie Hightower, Louis Van Amstel and Anna Trebunskaya won’t be on this season either.
The cast for Season 16 of DWTS, which was released this morning, includes singer Wynona Judd, Olympic gymnast Aly Raisman, former American Idol contestant Kellie Pickler and comedian Andy Dick. We previously reported the full list here.
Dancing with the Stars premieres March 18 on ABC.