Derek Hough Reveals Tyra Banks Wrote Julianne Hough 'A Beautiful Message' After Departing 'DWTS': She 'Was So Kind & Gracious'

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Apr. 20 2023, Published 11:00 a.m. ET

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After it was revealed that Tyra Banks wouldn't be returning for the upcoming season of Dancing With the Stars and would be replaced with Julianne Hough, Derek Hough has nothing but love for the model.

"I have to say that Tyra was unbelievably gracious and so kind. She wrote a beautiful message to Julianne, and I want to give her props for her grace. She's wonderful," the 37-year-old dancer exclusively tells OK! while talking about Head Care, a new drug-free line from the makers of Excedrin that helps support head health and comfort.

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Source: ABC/Sebastian Kim

Derek, who is engaged to Hayley Erbert, says it's helpful that his sister, 34, and her co-host Alfonso Ribeiro know what it's like to compete for the mirrorball trophy — something Banks, 49, didn't have experience with.

"It's good to have that perspective," Derek says. "I am glad to see the people I love and the people around me doing so well. It's a beautiful show, and it's something that means so much to me. I think the show will only benefit from having her, and I am looking forward to it. Alfonso is also great, and I think him and Julianne will be great together. They could easily surprise us and compete in the show halfway through!"

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As OK! previously reported, The KINRGY founder shared the exciting news about her new gig in March.

"It is such an honor to be rejoining Dancing With the Stars as co-host. The show holds such a special place in my heart from the many years and different roles I have had the privilege of being a part of," Julianne said on March 20. "The incredible team that brings the ballroom to life every night has been my family for the past 17 years. I am so excited to reunite with Alfonso, Carrie Ann, Bruno, Derek, the unbelievably talented pros, and the amazing cast on the dance floor."

Derek Hough
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Source: ABC/Christopher Willard
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Though Tyra — who slipped up multiple times and angered fans — is done with the job, she couldn't help but gush over Julianne's new move.

"The businesswoman in me sees how Julianne is great on multiple levels. She’s a professional dancer. She is the sister of Derek, a DWTS multi-champion, who is now a stellar judge," she said.

"It’s going to be a family affair in that ballroom which people will love to watch. And she has so much personality and strong opinions backed by expertise. She’s a perfect choice! She’s gonna crush it!" she added.


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