'Dancing With the Stars': Derek Hough on week 3's 'Story Night,' Bruno vs. Bolton, and why people assume all hot male dancers are gay

Professional dancer/amateur meteorologist Derek Hough, 25, and his partner Jennifer Grey, 50, have earned the top spot on the JUDGES’ LEADERBOARD for two weeks running on ABC’s Dancing With the Stars. Below, Derek checks in for his weekly EW.com grilling.

Derek-Hough-Dancing-StarsImage Credit: PacificCoastNews.com; Adam Lakey/ABC

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Derek, what’s going on here? You’re deep in thought about these jeans. Are you regretting your decision to try to teach them a quick foxtrot?
DEREK HOUGH: The perfect pair of jeans is clearly a mind-numbing decision.

Do you agree with judge-under-fire Bruno Tonioli that Michael Bolton’s jive was the worst jive in 11 seasons? Whose might have been worse?
To tell someone that something they’ve spent hours trying to learn is the worst they’ve seen is a harsh critique to have to make. Luckily, I am not hired on this show as a judge.

This week is STORY WEEK. Can you give three hints about your samba story?
We have a great ’80s song everyone will know. Three hints for the story: bowtie, ruler, and apple.

Why does the DWTS crowd boo no matter what the score is? Wouldn’t 9s and 10s on week 2 have been jumping the gun a bit?
The few hundred people that sit in the ballroom are very passionate fans. They all have their favorite team and boo and root accordingly – it gets loud in there sometimes.

Which couples do you see as the biggest competition for you and Jennifer?
We get asked this question a lot and it’s the hardest one to answer. Every couple is competition for us. Every week a different couple emerges as a contender.

Are you in touch with Julianne Hough a lot? Does she plan to come back to the show or are there too many blonde pros now?
Julianne and I are really close. She’s really busy making a film right now and I’m busy with DWTS but we try to talk/text daily.

Can the two of you communicate mentally across the city or world through the forbidden language of the lambada?
Lambada with your sister sounds super creepy to me.

Have you ever waxed your legs? Will Tony’s smoothness give him any ballroom-dancing advantages we should know about?
Maybe Tony will be more aerodynamic now. Less hair means less wind resistance. Or maybe he’ll take up swimming?

From reader Amy Kociolek: “When will the next DWTS tour be?”
We keep hearing rumors that there might be one this winter, but no one knows for sure.

From reader Ellie Mae: “Do you ever get tired of the judges kissing your ass and the show favoring you all the time?”
If only that were the case, then I wouldn’t have to work so hard at my job. Glad to know that it all comes across so effortlessly on screen though.

From reader Nadia: “Why is it that literally EVERY guy who can move and looks good is considered to be gay?”
Probably because a lot of straight guys are too self-conscious to let loose and show their moves because of stereotypes. It would be great if we could all live in a world where we can just be rather than be judged.

Derek, thank you for sharing this photo you took of a weird cloud on Twitter. Does it represent the stormy contents of your brain after a week of training?
We had the weirdest weather here in L.A. last week. One day it was 113 [degrees] and sunny, and one day it was overcast, raining, and there was a rainbow. I took that picture and tweeted it because we don’t really ever get inconsistent weather and scenes like that.

Getting excited for tonight’s “dances that tell a story,” DNCMSTRs?

Leave your questions for Baby Derek in the comments!

Read more:
Week 2: Derek Hough on the jive and shirtless paparazzi snaps
Reader-submitted ridiculata: Your Hidden Gems of Week 2!
Week 2 Results Recap: Dog Gone
Week 2 Performance Recap: ‘There’s Booing in the Ballroom’

Annie on Twitter: @EWAnnieBarrett


Comments (54 total) Add your comment
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  • LEE

    it’s Shame we live a world where people even care WHO’S GAY, WHO’S STRAIGHT, WHAT DOES THAT HAVE TO DO WITH ANYTHING,

    • Jay

      What does ANYTHING have to do with anything? Dont get so defensive. Every minor detail of celebrities’ lives is debated and commented on… why should sexual orientation be any different?

  • BD

    If anything, DWTS and SYTYCD have shattered the gay dancer stereotype-most men aren’t as butch as someone like Maks!

  • talkin’

    What was with the lambada bit? off the wall, not in a good way. The whole tone of this interview comes off as condescending, even hostile at points. What gives?

    • Zach

      what are you talking about? lambada is a sexy dance, and he would find it weird to do that with his sister. JEALOUS MUCH?

    • Jane

      I agree. Annie’s questions were rude, condescending and hostile to Derek. He’s volunteering his time to do this. Maybe appreciate it instead of giving him a hard time? He’s an extraordinary talent and we’re lucky to enjoy his work every week.

      • Stephanie

        Annie was rude. He is a popular pro who has done an amazing job each season. It is crazy how people twist past seasons and come up with the craziest ideas instead of just admitting he is talented.

      • Lori

        Yes, Annie was rude. She’s never really liked Derek and too bad it comes across in the tone of her interviews with him. Kudos to Derek with how he handles it. He’s a great guy.

  • dianne

    Well I’m pretty sure Derek is gay. It amazes me that they build the entire season around him, give him the best “celebrity” dance partner, etc.

    • Kiki

      So… IF Derek is gay, then he should be punished for his orientation and get bad partners?

    • Zach

      Derek’s not gay. Just ask Shannon Elizabeth.

      • Alex

        Derek is not gay. I’ve seen him out at clubs multiple times making out with women while more women are walking up coming onto him. He left Voyeur once in a car with 3 girls all over him. Most men are jealous of the babes this guy pulls. He doesn’t even have to try, the girls couldn’t get enough of him and were lining up to go home with him.

  • Elizabeth

    I’m guessing “Hot For Teacher”… almost as creepy as dancing the lambada w/your sister BTW :)

  • BJ

    Is it possible that Bruno is a heterophobe? :)

  • Lynn Franklin

    Derek, could you tell us a little about where you get your wonderful choreography ideas? For example, are you influenced by former ballroom dance champions (I see a little Donnie Burns in your choreography), or movies or ??? Do you start with the actual music, or a theme or something else?

    • Leah

      FINALLY! Someone who asked a legitimate dance question, and not digging for more info about his sex life. I was starting to wonder if this column is called “Tell us about your sexual preference”.

    • LoveVioletFlame

      Love your question, Lynn! Ditto for me! Derek, love your choreography. I’ve wondered if you have ideas in mind ahead of the season, knowing a waltz, paso doble, etc are coming, and then do you adapt them to the ability of your partner?

  • jared4ever

    I’m so glad Micahel Bolton was booted. He’s a whiny bitch. Sure Bruno is obnoxious but everyone knows that. And Bolton didn’t spend enough time learning his dance so he should expect to be abused by the judges. Good riddance.

  • rebecca

    Question for Derek: How long does it typically take for you to come up with the choreography for one dance? It seems like it would have to be pretty quickly!

  • Lisa

    Derek, huge fan & think you are the greatest male dancer I have ever seen, please make me happy by saying you will come back for next season too, the show would be less special without you in it.

  • Lisa

    Omg Alex seriously, wow I can only imagine, he’s so totally hot & crazy sexy, that boy gets alot of action I bet.
    I think he has a thing for women a little older than him too which is hot imo. lol

  • Rebecca

    Derek, you are so much fun to watch and your choreography is amazing. You are my 7-year-old daughter’s favorite pro dancer on the show. She loves you!
    I like the funny questions, but some of them do sound a bit mocking and/or hostile and I don’t like those.

  • Kaye

    Derek? If the celebrity you work with has ideas and a great dance imagination will you or have you incorporated their ideas into a routine? If yes give us an example please.

  • Lexi

    I don’t see any speculation about the other dancers sexual orientation ever. Derek seems to feel the need to showcase his relationships for publicity and his own Father gives interviews to say he is not gay. Why can’t he just keep his private life in the closet?

    • Jane

      Derek cannot help that he is dating the most famous woman in the UK and tabloids write about their relationship every day. Most of which is complete lies and you should not believe anything in the UK tabloids. They have no standards and routinely make up quotes. Derek has never spoken about his relationship with Cheryl. In fact, they go to great lengths to hide it and avoid paparazzi. They can’t help that tabloids just make up stories anyway and naive people believe them.

  • bev siedlecki

    Does anyone else think that the celebrity contestants should not have a professional dancing history? It spoils the whole show.

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