Strictly Come Dancing Star Aljaž Škorjanec Retraining As An Actor To Pursue Hollywood Dreams

“I’m just a fan of the craft and am trying to get my foot in the door."

Aljaž Škorjanec was used to leading on the Strictly Come Dancing dance floor, but he’s revealed that he has his sights set on a different kind of leading man – on the big screen.

The former Strictly champion, who announced in March that he was quitting the BBC dance show, has been taking acting lessons and auditioning for roles in an attempt “to get his foot in the door” of Hollywood.

The Slovenian dancer had been on Strictly for nine years, and news of his exit came less than a year after his wife, fellow dancer Janette Manrara, stepped down from the show to become the co-host of spin-off It Takes Two.

Aljaž Škorjanec
Aljaž Škorjanec
Mike Marsland via Getty Images

Aljaž told Hello magazine: “Being a couple on Strictly gave us an edge and I feel like it can be exactly the same when it comes to, potentially, one day being on a different kind of TV programme together.

“I’ve had an incredible nine years on Strictly and have felt so lucky to be there, but it felt like the right time to take a risk and open myself up to new challenges.

“I want to try other things like film, TV and radio while I’m still young enough and my body is 100% capable.

“I’m just a fan of the craft and am trying to get my foot in the door.

“Do I want to go to Hollywood? Of course! If I didn’t dream big I would never have ended up on Strictly.”

Janette added: “I already imagine him as a Hollywood leading man, he definitely has what it takes and he has always been my Prince Charming.”

Janette Manrara and Aljaž Škorjanec have both left Strictly for new pursuits.
Janette Manrara and Aljaž Škorjanec have both left Strictly for new pursuits.
Eamonn M. McCormack via Getty Images

In his Strictly debut series, Aljaž clinched the prize with model and TV presenter Abbey Clancy during the first all-female final on the show.

In 2017, he reached the final with partner Gemma Atkinson but missed out to winners Joe McFadden and Katya Jones.

Speaking about his decision to leave the show, he said: “Janette and I were a team and helped choreograph each other’s routines and every time I needed a shoulder or a hug she was there.

“But last year was different because, for the first time ever, I felt like I was doing Strictly on my own.”

Janette and Aljaz
Janette and Aljaz

Janette added: “The day he made the announcement we were literally holding hands with tears in our eyes because it was a bittersweet feeling.

“We always say it was never a Strictly curse for us, it was always a blessing and the best thing for us – in our marriage, in our careers and everything.”

The couple said they would like to present a TV show together, inspired by husband and wife duo Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford.


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