Maksim Chmerkovskiy isn’t returning to “Dancing With The Stars.”
The 33-year-old pro dancer of Ukrainian descent has been on the show for nearly seven years, teaching celebs like Kirstie Alley, Melissa Gilbert and Hope Solo how to dance.
He’s been a controversial figure, sometimes accused of pushing his partners too far. Soccer star Solo even wrote a book where she claimed he physically abused her during practice.
In a carefully worded statement, Chmerkovskiy announced that he would not be coming back to the show for another season on Tuesday:
“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.' 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 the show. I'm going to take this time to dive into producing and acting, while fulfilling my sponsorship obligations.
“A big thank you to all of my fans for your never-ending support. I also want to thank the entire cast and production of ‘Dancing With the Stars.’"
Some of his fans are wondering if he got fired or quit, but it doesn’t seem “Maks” will be revealing that information anytime soon.
His younger brother Val, who’s been on the show for the past three seasons, will be returning for the 16th season of the show.
[Check out the full cast of “Dancing With The Stars” season 16]
Other “DWTS” pros who have left the show have gone of to find success, most notably Julianne Hough, who appeared in "Footloose,” “Burlesque,” "Rock of Ages,” and currently in the Nicholas Sparks film “Safe Haven,” opposite Josh Duhamel.