Derek Hough Signs Overall Deal With ABC

Derek Hough-Publicity 2-H 2019
Courtesy of NBC

Derek Hough is making a home at ABC.

The dancer, choreographer and Dancing With the Stars judge has signed an overall deal with ABC Entertainment, under which he will host and develop specials and entertainment programming for the broadcast network.

"Coming home to ABC and being given the opportunity to develop projects for them that are as much on brand for them as they are for me makes this even that more exciting for me," said Hough.

The pact comes shortly after Hough, a six-time Dancing With the Stars champ as a professional dancer, rejoined the show as a judge. He's filling the spot previously occupied by Len Goodman, who's still contributing to DWTS remotely but opted not to travel to the United States from his home in London during the coronavirus pandemic.

"Derek is a creative force not just in the ballroom, but also every room he enters," said ABC Entertainment president Karey Burke. "He has been part of our ABC family for many years; the energy and dedication he brings to every project is palpable. We value his partnership immensely and look forward to the exciting and imaginative projects to come."

The deal with Hough could also further Burke's goal of increasing the number of live events on ABC. She said in January that she wanted to have a live tentpole event, be it an awards show, special or live episode of an unscripted series, monthly as a way to drive viewers to the network. The pandemic derailed those plans, but as production restarts Burke's objective could resume as well.

Hough is a two-time Emmy winner for choreography. Prior to rejoining Dancing With the Stars, he was a judge on NBC's World of Dance. His TV credits also include ABC's Nashville, the network's Disney Family Singalong specials, a 2019 NBC holiday special (alongside his sister Julianne) and Hairspray Live.