Is Maks Chmerkovskiy officially leaving "Dancing with the Stars"? TMZ says yes.
Sources close to production reportedly told TMZ that Chmerkovskiy met with producers earlier this week to inform them that he wouldn't return for the next season of ABC's reality hit.
Chmerkovskiy's looming exit has been rumored for some time. Back in September 2012, the dancer told The New York Post that he planned to leave the series after his contract expired this year.
“What else do I have to do there after 15 seasons?” he told The Post. “It makes total sense. The audience can’t expect for me to want to stick around, and the producers can’t expect for me to want to stick around.”
After backpedaling on that statement, Chmerkovskiy reiterated his desire to leave "DWTS" in November, writing in a TV Guide post: "I have not made a decision about next season yet. To be honest, I have many offers and I might need a break."
According to TMZ, Chmerkovskiy's brother Val will return to the series. A rep for ABC told The Huffington Post that the network doesn't comment on casting rumors, but that the cast for the latest cycle of "Dancing with the Stars" will be announced live on "Good Morning America" on February 26.
Do you want Chmerkovskiy to stay on "DWTS"? Weigh in below!