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[03/05/09 - 02:02 PM]
Dancing with the Stars Contestants Jewel and Nancy O'Dell Withdraw from Competition Due to Injuries
Jewel was diagnosed with a fractured tibia in both legs, O'Dell a torn meniscus.

[via press release from ABC]

"DANCING WITH THE STARS" CONTESTANTS JEWEL AND NANCY O'DELL WITHDRAW FROM COMPETITION DUE TO INJURIES

Both Celebrities to Appear on "Dancing with the Stars" Season Premiere, Monday, March 9

Additional Changes to the Cast Will Also Be Announced

Multi-platinum singer/songwriter Jewel and "Access Hollywood" host Nancy O'Dell have withdrawn from Season Eight of ABC's "Dancing with the Stars" citing injuries. Jewel was diagnosed with a fractured tibia in both legs, O'Dell a torn meniscus. The injuries were sustained while training for the competition.

Jewel and O'Dell will appear on the season premiere of "Dancing with the Stars," MONDAY, MARCH 9 (8:00-10:02 p.m., ET) to address their injuries. The women were paired with professional dancers Tony Dovolani and Dmitry Chaplin, respectively. Additional changes to the cast will also be announced during Monday's premiere.

"Like most sports, dancing can be a demanding, physical activity. Each participant of 'Dancing with the Stars' warrants in contract that they are physically fit enough to participate in the competition. We love and appreciate Nancy and Jewel's competitive spirit, drive and desire to perform their best. Though we share in their disappointment that they can no longer continue, their physical well-being takes precedent above all else. We thank them both for giving it their all and wish them a quick and full recovery," said Executive Producer Conrad Green.

"When the doctors told me my injuries were so severe that I couldn't walk, let alone compete, I was devastated that I couldn't continue the show," said Jewel. "I have every intention of being at 'Dancing with the Stars' this season supporting my husband, Ty, and his partner, Chelsie (Hightower). I hope to be back on the show in the future."

"Beyond disappointment doesn't even being to describe how I feel about not being able to continue on 'Dancing with the Stars,'" said O'Dell. "It has been one of my favorite shows since Season One! But I have torn the meniscus in my knee in two places, which requires surgery. 'Dancing with the Stars' was a great experience. I'll miss working with my partner, Tony Dovolani, and all the other wonderful people on the amazing production that is 'Dancing with the Stars'"

Hosted by Tom Bergeron ("America's Funniest Home Videos") and Samantha Harris ("The Insider"), "Dancing with the Stars" is the U.S. version of the international smash hit series, "Strictly Come Dancing." This version is produced by BBC Worldwide Productions. Conrad Green serves as executive producer and Rob Wade and Matilda Zoltowski are co-executive producers. Alex Rudzinski directs. "Dancing with the Stars" is broadcast in 720 Progressive (720P), ABC's selected HDTV format, with 5.1 channel surround sound and Spanish audio via SAP.





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· AMERICA'S FUNNIEST HOME VIDEOS (ABC)
· DANCING WITH THE STARS (ABC)
· INSIDER, THE (SYNDICATION)





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