Miss Universe hosts announces wrong winner
LAS VEGAS - Agence France-Presse
Miss Philippines Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach reacts as she is called back to the stage to be crowned Miss Universe during the 2015 Miss Universe Pageant in Las Vegas, Nevada December 20, 2015. REUTERS photoMiss Colombia was wrongly named Miss Universe in a dramatic mix-up in front of a global television audience of millions on Dec. 20, before the rightful winner Miss Philippines was finally handed the glittering crown.
The pageant’s host, US comedian Steve Harvey, misread his cue card and initially announced Miss Colombia, Ariadna Gutierrez, had triumphed.
She was fleetingly crowned and congratulated at the ceremony in Las Vegas and started waving to fans. But as she blew kisses to an adoring crowd, Harvey was forced to come clean and announce the real winner.
“OK folks, I have to apologize. The first runner up is Colombia.”
“Miss Universe 2015 is Philippines,” he added as the music began anew, with the actual winner, Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach, a high-profile actress and television host, looking stunned and mouthing “what?”
Harvey attempted to explain the error to a perplexed audience, who greeted the news with both cheers and boos.
“This is exactly what’s on the card. I will take responsibility for this. It was my mistake, it was on the card,” he said.
“It was my mistake, still a great night,” added the talk show host, saying the audience should not “hold it against the ladies.”
The glittering crown was then promptly placed on Wurtzbach’s head. She later told reporters she wished Miss Colombia the best.
“I’m very sorry, I did not take the crown from her and I wish her well in whatever she wants to pursue after this pageant,” she said.
News of the error spread rapidly on social media, with the #MissUniverse2015 hashtag trending.
“People are human, mistakes can happen. Luckily some have the bravery to own it & take a step to correct it. Hugs to #MissUniverse2015 wow,” tweeted Audrey Bolte, who described herself as Miss Ohio USA 2012.
Some viewers appeared to be gloating. “It’s okay Miss Colombia. At least you know how it feels to be Miss Universe, at least for a few minutes,” one Filipino said on Twitter.