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Ouch! The force just wasn't with Billy Dee Williams on 'Dancing With the Stars'

Adam Taylor / Today
Billy Dee Williams pleased "Star Wars" fans with a tribute performance on the premiere week of "Dancing With the Stars," but by week-three, his ballroom adventure was over.

It's back to Cloud City for Lando Calrissian! "Star Wars" actor Billy Dee Williams bid bye-bye to the ballroom on "Dancing With the Stars" Monday night due to a bad back.

“My back is really hurting,” Williams told TODAY shortly after host Tom Bergeron announced that the actor wouldn’t be continuing in the competition.

Williams and his pro partner, Emma Slater, learned that he needed to withdraw just days after last week's performance.

"We went to rehearsals on Tuesday and by Wednesday, Billy went to see the doctor,” Slater told us. "On Thursday, we realized that it was going to be a bigger issue than we realized. The doctor didn’t want to clear Billy to compete.”

Even though his stay was a short one, Williams has no regrets.

"I had a great time,” he said of his experience on the show. “I wish it could continue.”

Alas, his injury, which stems from his past on-screen work, won't allow for that.

“This is a result of all the stunts I’ve done in movies,” he explained. “I’m 77 years old!”

The actor said he’s been advised against having surgery to correct his condition. So looking back, was doing all those "Star Wars" stunts worth it?

“Of course,” he said. “I can’t say it’s not worth it. I had a good time and I made a lot of money!”

Slater, who went to the semi-finals last season with funnyman Bill Engvall, also has no regrets about exiting so early.

"This decision wasn’t as difficult as I thought it would be because it was the right one to make,” she said. “We’re celebrating the time we’ve had together.”

And there's a chance they might still have a little more time together on "Dancing With the Stars" yet — during the May season finale when all the eliminated couples return for one last dance.

"I’m hoping we get to the dance that we were going to do (Monday night),” an optimistic Slater said.

"I don’t know yet,” Williams cautioned. “We’ll see. But, sure, why not?”



See how the rest of the competition fares as the ballroom bash continues. "Dancing With the Stars" airs Mondays at 8 p.m. on ABC.