When Jaleel White was announced as part of the “Dancing with the Stars” Season 14 cast, fans immediately wanted to know if the funnyman would honor his “Family Matters” roots by letting a few of Steve Urkel/Stefan Urquelle’s dance moves seep into his routines with professional partner Kym Johnson.
Fortunately, Jaleel says he just might give the fans what they want – if they prove their loyalty by voting him through a few rounds of the reality competition first.
“If [‘Family Matters’ fans] can keep me on the show long enough, I think we’ll have some fun stuff for them that will invoke some nostalgia, but at the same time keep it classic to where I’m at in my life now,” Jaleel told Access Hollywood correspondent Kit Hoover at his and Kym’s “DWTS” rehearsal in Los Angeles on Thursday, when asked if he’ll pay homage to his bespectacled/suspendered former character.
While the 35-year-old actor is remaining humble about his “Dancing” potential, Kym – who was partnered with David Arquette last season — said coaching Jaleel has been a joy thus far.
“He’s got natural moves and he’s got rhythm, which is the most important thing,” she told Kit. “So, he’s making my job very easy.”
And Jaleel is no stranger to the routine “DWTS” weight loss – the actor revealed he’s already shed some extra weight.
“I already lost 10 pounds,” he told Kit. “I lost six just trying to get in shape for [the show]… I was running hills and doing high knees and I was really getting after it.”
And if Jaleel’s nervous for the season premiere (where he and Kym will perform the foxtrot as their first dance), he’s not letting on.
“I actually embrace a crowd,” he told Kit. “Anytime [Kym] has us do the dance in front of somebody, we don’t make mistakes. When we’re in here by ourselves, we’re making mistakes constantly!
“So, I kind of work in reverse because of my sitcom past,” he added. “When you put the audience there, I know it’s go time!”
Watch Jaleel and Kym in action when “Dancing with the Stars” Season 14 premieres on March 19 at 8/7c on ABC.