'Dancing With the Stars' Gilles Marini: 'Hard work just doesn't cut it sometimes'
Even though the French actor consistently wowed the judges with his technical skill, he suggested to reporters tonight that his fate was sealed after he and partner Peta Murgatroyd were booted early from the swing-dance marathon two weeks ago.
"They did something," he said carefully. "How do I describe ... the marathon dance -- out of nowhere you can pick and choose because it's ... it's not a pure dance.
"The public may not pay attention to that and you can shut things down very quickly. Well, we were pretty much the first ones to go and having to catch up and make up so many points, it's absolutely difficult so you cannot ... Even if I had scored three 10s yesterday, I wouldn't be in tonight. The marathon just did it. It did me in."
It's ironic, because Gilles earned the admiration of all the dancers -- including the pros - for his relentless dedication. "I'll work until I drop dead," he told us.
"I have to make sense in my life about where I should apply this, because sometimes it doesn't matter how hard you work," he continued, with disappointment clouding his usually radiant countenance. "Sometimes it doesn't take just hard work, it takes something else -- and that's something else I will have to find in my life, because hard work just doesn't cut it sometimes."
Arbitrary marathon ouster aside, Gilles acknowledges that fan voting also played a role in his departure.
"You know what, if you don't pick up the phone, we're gone -- no matter what score we have."
In the end, he insists, "it's not about winning -- it's about how hard you try."
And he credits his partner with what he was able to accomplish on the dance floor. "Peta pushed me to the limits of... I could never believe I was about to do those steps and those moves."
But the "Switched at Birth" star offered an interesting response when asked whether he has any regrets about participating in "DWTS" a second time. "I plead the fifth."
Then he qualified: "No, no regrets because I met Peta." And to hammer home his point, he repeated: "No regrets because I met Peta, and no regrets because I met Peta. No regrets because I met Peta."
What was your reaction to tonight's elimination? Do you think Gilles and Peta got a fair shake?