Already have an account?
Get back to the

Tributes to Len Goodman, ‘DWTS’ Judge Who Died Saturday at 78, Pour In — A Look at His Legacy and Memorable Quotes

Best known for his candid criticism, Goodman is remembered by celebrities around the globe.


Len Goodman, Dancing With the Stars judge for 17 years from 2005 to 2022, died on Saturday at 78 years old.

Goodman’s manager, Jackie Gill, reported the news to BBC in a statement on Monday morning. “It is with great sadness to announce that Len Goodman has passed away peacefully, aged 78,” she wrote. “A much loved husband, father, and grandfather who will be sorely missed by family, friends, and all who knew him.” Gill also noted that he died at a Tunbridge Wells hospice in Kent, England, surrounded by his family. He had bone cancer.

Len Goodman’s Most Memorable Commentary

As one of the original judges on DWTS, alongside Carrie Ann Inaba and Bruno Tonioli, Goodman was an icon on the competition series. He was best known for his cockney accent, candid criticism, and harsh jokes — which is why a “10 from Len” was one of the most coveted achievements on the show.

“I felt like a schoolteacher with a very precocious young child,” he once told Mario Lopez in Season 3, referring to his criticism of one of Lopez’s previous performances. “And if you’d done it again this week, I was putting you over this podium and slapping your bottom.” On Season 4, he told Billy Ray Cyrus: “You did all the right steps, but unfortunately all at the wrong time.”

While many celebrities found Goodman’s comments rude, others brushed them off with a laugh. Still others found them honest and helpful. Over the years, fans have compiled his quotes into a list of the most memorable ones (check them out below):

  • “Parts were magic, parts were tragic.”
  • “It was like a match. Hot at the top, wooden at the bottom.”
  • “You flew across the floor like a rampant crab.”
  • “If you were playing poker, you went all in.”
  • “Your feet are bloody big ugly.”
  • “The one constant throughout the whole thing was that your footwork was bad.”

Celebrities Remember Goodman

Bruno Tonioli was one of the first celebrities to write about Goodman’s passing. “Heart broken my dear friend and partner for 19 years the one and only ballroom legend #lengoodman passed away,” he wrote on Instagram. “I will treasure the memory of our incredible adventures and hundreds of shows we did together … there [sic] will never be anyone like you. We will miss you.”

“A Dancer. A teacher. A refined gentleman. A wonderful storyteller. A special soul. A mentor. A family man. And… A treasured friend,” co-judge Carrie Ann Inaba wrote in her own Instagram post. “Saying goodbye at the end of last season broke my heart. But today’s news has shattered it all over again. I can’t believe that you’re gone.”

Country singer and former DWTS competitor Lauren Alaina posted about Goodman on Instagram. “I am honored to have met this wonderful and talented man,” she wrote. “He was a pure joy to be around and learn from. Sending love to his loved ones and all of the @dancingwiththestars family. He will be missed, but his memory and influence will live on forever. Rest in peace, Len.”

Use left and right arrow keys to navigate between menu items. Use right arrow key to move into submenus. Use escape to exit the menu. Use up and down arrow keys to explore. Use left arrow key to move back to the parent list.