Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo
Culture > Entertainment

Selma Blair And Her Legacy On Dancing With The Stars

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at U Conn chapter.

Selma Blair is an amazing actress, known for her various roles in both movies and television. She is primarily known for her role as Vivian Kensington in Legally Blonde. However, her life was turned upside down in 2018 when she was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, an unpredictable disease in which the immune system eats away at the protective covering of nerves, causing chronic nerve pain throughout the body. Due to this diagnosis, she decided to take a hiatus from the big screen to focus on her well-being and to figure out how to mitigate her symptoms. Since her diagnosis, Selma Blair has only been able to walk mainly with a cane in order to alleviate the pressure on her nerves and joints throughout the day. However, what she didn’t know was that she was about to take on the challenge of a lifetime.

This year, she was selected to be one of the sixteen celebrities on the 31st season of Dancing with the Stars. Many celebrities who have participated in this competition have come out on the other side, whether they won the competition or not, both physically and mentally stronger. Not only does participating in this show provide the celebrities an opportunity to problem-solve in new ways but it also gives these celebrities an opportunity to establish a creative outlet to help clear their mind of any emotions. Professional dancer, Cheryl Burke, explains that this show has changed her life immensely and it has helped her find a reason to “get out of bed” and it gives her “a purpose in life regardless” of whatever hardships she may face. After hearing many testimonies like this, Selma Blair reluctantly accepted her invitation to be on the show, acknowledging the toll this might take on her already weak body.

Despite her physical ailments, Selma Blair was able to impress the judges with her dedication to improvement. She and her partner Sasha Farber were able to make it through four weeks of the competition, pushing her body to the limit each week. It seemed as though nothing was going to slow her down. She was seen as a favorite by the judges as well as by the audience.

However, at the end of the week four competition, Selma Blair made an announcement that would shake the competition and break our hearts. This competition had taken a serious toll on Selma Blair’s body and she decided that for her own well-being, she would not be able to compete further in the competition. She explained that due to the intense nature of the show she accumulated “intensive bone trauma and inflammation among rips and tears” in her muscles. Although her decision to stop dancing on the show was not an easy decision for her, she knew that her body could not take this damage anymore.

Although Selma was only able to compete for a couple of weeks, the impact of being on the show would stick with Selma for much longer. She was able to end her career on Dancing with the Stars with one final, gentle dance with her partner Sasha Farber. She put her all into this dance and her raw emotions were seen by the judges, the audience, and the viewers at home. One of the four judges, Carrie Ann Inaba, explains that her dance was “like watching a living, breathing, elegantly dancing miracle,” on the stage. With tears In her eyes, she continues: “[She] brought so much awareness for people who struggle with chronic illness, who deal with chronic pain,” and she should be proud of everything that she has achieved in this competition and beyond. This competition is tough both mentally and physically for all the performers but to perform with the extra obstacle of this degenerative disease is what has made Selma Blair such an inspiration to everyone.

Selma Blair reciprocated the adoration by explaining that this show has been filled with “a lot of love and to walk away, to have to let the love continue without you” is heartbreaking. Despite her physical decline due to her disease, she has walked away stronger than ever. She has made connections through being on the show that she never would have made otherwise. The show will not be the same without Selma Blair on it but her legacy remains forever. On the bright side, her perseverance in this show allowed her to be nominated for a People’s Choice Award for her spectacular performance. You can vote for Selma Blair, some of her other fellow contestants, Charli D’amelio and Gabby Windy, as well as the overall show using this link.

Emily Markelon is the Twitter and Facebook Chair for the University of Connecticut chapter of Her Campus. She writes a wide range of articles about topics such as mental health, environmentalism and pop culture. She is a junior environmental studies and journalism double major. When she is not writing for Her Campus, she loves going on walks, listening to music, and journaling.