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TV Bulletin Board (Tues., March 4) -- Dancing with the Stars throws out latest cast -- and a changeup

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Just a hunch, but comedian/game show host Drew Carey would seem to be at a disadvantage opposite Olympic ice dancing champs Charlie White and Meryl Davis when ABC’s Dancing with the Stars returns for its 18th edition on Monday, March 17th.

Via Good Morning America, ABC announced a dozen new hoofers Tuesday. The show also has a first-year co-host, ESPN’s Erin Andrews, and a “dramatic new twist” called The Switch Up. Viewers will make the calls, with contestants required to change professional partners at some point in the season. DWTS continued to fade in the prime-time ratings last season, particularly among advertiser-prized 18-to-49-year-olds. It now has a top-heavy older audience appeal -- at least as far as ABC is concerned.

Here are the 12 newcomers:

Drew Carey (paired with Cheryl Burke)
Charlie White (Sharna Burgess)
Meryl Davis (Maksim Chmerkovskiy)
Former NHL hockey star Sean Avery (Karina Smirnoff)
Author and ex-Full House star Candace Cameron Bure (Mark Ballas)
Reality TV habitué NeNe Leakes (Tony Dovolani)
Singer/actor James Maslow (Peta Murgatroyd)
Former Wonder Years co-star Danica McKellar (Valentin Chmerkovskiy)
Endurance swimmer Diana Nyad (Henry Byalikov)
Paralympic snowboarder Amy Purdy (Derek Hough)
Pop singer Cody Simpson (Witney Carson)
Actor Billy Dee Williams (Emma Slater)

The show’s three charter judges -- Len Goodman, Carrie Ann Inaba and Bruno Tonioli -- will all return.

***On Monday’s Jimmy Kimmel Live!, the host announced his first batch of guests for the March 10-14 shows from Austin. He plans to welcome Willie Nelson, Gov. Rick Perry, Seth Rogen and Rosario Dawson among others. The shows are tied to the annual SXSW music festival.

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