ABC looks for replacement stars for "Dancing"

Fri Mar 6, 2009 3:17pm EST
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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - "Dancing with the Stars" producers scrambled on Friday to find two swift replacements for next week's season premiere after singer Jewel and celebrity journalist Nancy O'Dell dropped out with injuries.

The hit ABC show said it would not reveal the replacements until the eighth season kicks off on Monday.

But celebrity news sites said former Playboy model Holly Madison was expected to be one of them.

Madison, 30, was Playboy founder Hugh Hefner's "number one girlfriend" and starred in the U.S. TV reality show "The Girls Next Door" before ending her relationship with Hefner last year.

"She's wanted to do it for so long," Madison's friend Bridget Marquardt told the Fox News Strategy Room discussion show.

"It just never worked with her schedule and Hef was always like 'I don't want you to do that,' and now it's her time, so I'm really happy for her," Marquardt said.

ABC said that Jewel, a Grammy winning singer, had to leave the show after suffering a fractured tibia in each leg.

O'Dell, a journalist from the celebrity news show "Access Hollywood," was sidelined with a torn meniscus in her knee. Both contestants suffered the injuries in practice.

There was no news Friday on who might replace O'Dell.   Continued...

<p>Singer Jewel arrives at the 43rd Annual Academy of Country Music Awards show in Las Vegas, Nevada, May 18, 2008. REUTERS/Steve Marcus</p>