It's a bad time to be backstage at ABC: not even twenty-four hours after word broke about behind-the-scenes in-fighting at The View, the Chicago Sun-Times is reporting similar agita over at Dancing with the Stars, where the tyrannical Cloris Leachman has proven impossible to send home. It appears the producers and fellow dancers are firmly on Team Florence Henderson, as they're tired of the 82-year-old Leachman evading the ax simply by hamming it up for the cameras. "She has a Quentin Tarantino role to get to," they cry! "Does she need anything else?"
This source said "Dancing" competitor Susan Lucci is "fit to be tied. She is working so hard and is outraged that others have been eliminated who are far better than Cloris. It's all about her obnoxious schtick. ... There are deep concerns that people are going to tune out, thinking this has become a big joke and not the serious though entertaining dance competition it's supposed to be. ''Everyone assumed it would be Cloris and not Toni Braxton who would be eliminated [Tuesday],'' added the source. ''There was even some gallows humor going around today. ... People joked it must be a whole lot of CBS, NBC and Fox executives getting everyone they know to vote for Cloris — to try and wreck the show,'' the staffer said with a rueful laugh. Along with all of the judges, show co-host Samantha Harris is said to be ''sick and tired'' of Cloris and ''her attempts to dominate everything,'' said my source. It even was evident when Harris snapped at Leachman to get away from the kids who had just danced in a junior competition on the show Tuesday night. ''After we were off the air, Samantha, Susan and a lot of others were saying they had had it with Cloris.''You'd better watch yourself, Cloris; not everyone is as susceptible to your cavernous cleavage as Bruno Tonioli. When will Leachman realize that Dancing with the Stars is a serious, well-respected forum for Mormon child stars to play out their apple-cheeked nervous breakdowns on-camera, not some mere lark?
- Sick of Cloris' shtick [Chicago Sun-Times]