May 24 2011 10:53 PM ET

Anna Kournikova joins 'Biggest Loser' as celebrity trainer for next season

Categories: Reality TV, Television

The Biggest Loser has netted a new celebrity trainer: Tennis star Anna Kournikova will join NBC’s popular weight-loss competition next season, a network spokesperson confirmed today. The 29-year-old Russian is filling the  slot that is being vacated by Jillian Michaels —  who announced her impending departure back in December — though the Biggest Loser team is not viewing Kournikova as a substitute. “We intentionally tried to not replace Jillian,” executive producer Todd Lubin told Vulture, which first reported the news about Kournikova, who appeared on an episode during Biggest Loser’s tenth season. The direction of the show will be “getting slightly away from just the tape measure, and getting into overall well-being and health,” added Lubin. “That’s where Loser needs to go.” UPDATE: An NBC spokesperson also confirmed to EW that current Biggest Loser trainers Brett Hoebel and Cara Castronuova, who joined the series this year, will not return for season 12. The season 11 finale airs tonight.

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  • Craig

    Great choice!

  • trystan

    When did she become a trainer?

    • el

      Yeah this seems kinda odd. Being an athlete doesn’t automatically make you a great trainer I’d think.

    • HR

      Who the f*ck cares? She’s much easier on the eyes than that over the hill lesbian they got now.

  • Hoboken Loser

    Where the heck was Rulon, the Olympic Champion that Biggest Loser loved to promote incessantly tonight? Did he put weight back on? Did he leave the show on bad terms?

    I am a huge BL fan, but Anna K. is NOT a good replacement for Jillian Michaels. I do kind of hope that Brett and Cara come back, I was starting to warm up to them.

    God forbid, I thought the new trainer might be Jackie Warner from the Bravo Show work out. She would be more in line with this show.

    Bring back that super hottie, Kim Lyons from a few seasons back. She was unfairly judged against Jillian AND she is hotter than Anna K, imho.

    • John

      Rulon left the show but the story is he was sneaking phone calls home and that was against the rules.

      • Hoboken Loser

        Thanks for the update. You figure they would at least mention his DQ. They promoted the crud out of him and his story. Don’t you think fans would wonder a little bit where he was?

        What is BL going to do if people get to pick trainers next year. Bob’s entire team is going to fill up before Anna gets one by default!

  • Abby

    ha, after 10 minutes of Anna, the world will be “Jillian WHO??” glad to see the end of her. I couldn’t decide which personality of hers I hated more, the SCREAMING in your face, or the treacly sickeningly fake ‘trauma counsellor’ Ugh she was insufferable.

  • JJ

    Kornikova couldn’t capture a grand slam win in her entire career and only ended becoming famous because most tennis players before her were not considered to be “hot”. She’s never been known to have an amazing body even in the world of tennis and she’s never struggled with being overweight or trained normal every day people to personal success. NBC is now trying the celebrity route given the success of The Voice. No thanks, bring back Kim from the first time Jillian was gone.

    • anonymous

      Just to clarify, Anna Kournikova is not nearly the tennis slouch that people make her out to be. While she never won a singles title, she did reach the top 10 in singles as well as a Grand Slam semifinal at Wimbledon in 1997. She’s also a former world number one in doubles, with two doubles Gran Slams to her name. While her fame might have had more to do with her looks than her tennis, you can’t deny that she was actually a pretty good tennis player.

      • Em

        um… she really wasn’t that great. in fact, compared to most, she wasn’t that good. signed, all the tennis fans

      • anonymous

        How many tennis players have been ranked number one in either singles or doubles? How many have won multiple slams, even if only in doubles? How many have been ranked in the top 10 in singles? I’m not saying she’s one of the greatest of all time (or even close to being one of the greatest), but she’s done a lot better than most professional players ever will.

  • Mermaid

    Abby – You are SO right! I just know that if I had ever encountered Jillian offering me any type of her version of “encouragement,” I’d have wanted to haul off & slap into next Tuesday. And I’m not a violent person. She’s just that aggravating, annoying, offensive…I could go on. And then when she decides to dig deep into contestants past lives to help them figure out “the why” – when did she become a certified trauma specialist?

    Now, I don’t know a whole lot about Anna K, but what I do know is that a lot of guys think she’s very HOT stuff. She’s a very fit tennis player (who’s never won a major singles tourney). Male viewers are gonna love her!

    And Biggest Loser – sure wish they wouldn’t call the show “Couples.” This implies a romantic relationship between the 2 contestants. The pairings can be anything – husband-wife, parent-child, siblings, friends, co-workers, random, etc. How about “Pairs,” just like tennis? jmho

  • kate middleton

    Total stunt choice to get press. She is a decent (at best) tennis player who only got by on her looks. Not a trainer.

  • pat day

    this show is not about hottie trainers or about a persons sexuality it is about changing lives so lets focus on that and leave the negative comments out of this forum

  • george bush

    Pat day I think you need to enlist and lighten up

  • jean louise

    NO ONE gets in the top ten of a professional sport on their looks! The media made it about her looks…oh my, wow what a shocker! You gotta be a whole lot more than pretty a professional tennis player. duh!

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