SPOILER ALERT: We talked to the latest contestant eliminated on Tuesday night’s Dancing With the Stars! After the jump, learn more about the hoofer who said goodbye to all those blisters and grueling workouts.
Though she took a beating by the judges for her “catatonic” rendition of a foxtrot, Kate Gosselin may have single-handedly kept the viewers coming back to Dancing with the Stars. But the tabloids won’t have the mother of eight to knock around anymore (at least, not until her next TLC show, Twist of Kate, fires up sometime this summer). Gosselin and her partner Tony Dovolani talked to EW about her teary-eyed goodbye, and just how hard it was to deal with the relentless press coverage.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: You said to Tom Bergeron coming into this night that you were expecting to go, and yet you were speechless. What was going through your head?
KATE GOSSELIN: I have been crying all day today and telling the hair and makeup and everybody I saw goodbye, even though they hated to hear it. I knew. My gut feelings are always right. You can make them go away but I woke up this morning and I knew it was today. And it was okay. Everybody else — they are better dancers, they are wonderful people. I love watching them, I loved hanging out with them, I loved the opportunity. I love the Dancing with the Stars family and I was thrilled for the opportunity.
How did it feel when Bruno said you looked catatonic during your performance?
TONY DOVOLANI: Tonight we are focusing on the great journey we had together. The competition is over for us at this point. What’s great about it is we have a great friendship that we are going to continue. We had a lot of laughs, we had a lot of fun with each other. They didn’t show that, but we know we had a great time. She has a friend here [points to himself].
KG: Back at you!
Tom asked to forgo your goodbye package so he could keep going with the live interview. What did you think of that?
KG: I didn’t give it much thought. I love Tom. He’s been a great supporter. He always made sure I was okay, going out of his way to find me. He’s a great guy. I love Brooke. I love everyone here. I just think it was so amazing to have met such a wonderful group of people.
TD: I thought Tom was amazing for taking that moment. It was such an emotional moment and he wanted to share it with the audience. And he was amazing, he’s so great on his feet. The fact that he gave both of us the opportunity to speak from our hearts was emotional. Kate was very emotional but she was still able to find the strength to thank the fans, to thank me, to thank everybody around her, and to give all the other contestants hugs.
KG: He allowed me to finish crying so I could speak.
What are you going to tell your kids? Have you called them yet?
KG: I strategically had them watch a movie tonight instead of watching the show, and then I will tell them tomorrow personally. Every week they were getting more and more nervous with me. I wouldn’t discuss it with them, but every week they would come and say, ‘Mommy, I hope you make it.’ They were getting more and more concerned. They will be upset, but they will be okay.
Which dance did you think you did the best?
KG: The tango was the best.
TD: The tango was the best, yes. But I thought every week she showed improvement. That was the thing that was very impressive to me. She was slowly transforming, and I felt so thankful to the fans for giving us the opportunity to show that. It truly means that anyone can learn how to dance, regardless of what is going on in their life or with their physical ability. In this case, Kate had three other lives going on at the same time and still gave me 100 percent for my lessons. Where she found the energy, I don’t know. It’s beyond me, what she deals with in everyday life. Most people would probably crawl up in a corner and cry themselves to sleep. This one dusts herself off every day, and I mean every day. She had no clue what she was waking up to, reading the tabloids, what was being written about her, what was made up every single day — to the point they were making up stories about how we don’t get along, which was complete nonsense.
What was it like for you, Tony? She’s articulated what it’s like to endure all the press, but what was it like having a partner who was being constantly written about?
KG: I’m going to answer that and I’ll tell you why. Originally, when I met Tony I said, ‘You have no idea what you are in for, you have no idea what you are facing. Let me try to warn you.’ I tried to warn him and he said, ‘Oh, okay, we’ve dealt with paparazzi and press before.’ And I said, ‘yeah oooh-kay.’ So it wasn’t until two or three weeks ago when he called me after practice. I was standing at my kitchen sink and he called to say, ‘Honestly, seriously? Is this really what you deal with every single day?’ And I said, ‘Tony, YES.’ [She looks at Dovolani.] You didn’t have any words. He was silent.
TD: I didn’t have the words. Some tabloid had taken my words and twisted them. And I was very clear about my words. I don’t stumble very often. The fact that they took my words and twisted them, I was like, wow. I can only imagine. That made me read some of the articles about Kate. And I was like, whoa. This is weird. I can’t believe people actually read that.
Can you take a vacation now, Kate?
TD: You mean with those three other lives she has? She gave me six hours she didn’t have!
KG: The one thing you can say is that I don’t have six extra hours, but there were days of the week that I didn’t run for an hour. I will never NOT have an hour to run every day. To be honest, I’m looking forward to going back to running every day. It’s my stress relief.
Would you ever consider doing a scripted show in the future?
KG: I thought I would. I’m so real, I see myself as a co-host in the future, maybe not so much acting. Maybe after 150,000 acting lessons. But I don’t know. I wear my emotions on my sleeve. [Dovolani chuckles.] Tony is shocked to hear that.