Miss Universe said she’s sorry for the debacle that resulted in runner-up Miss Colombia mistakenly being crowned pageant queen, but not enough to share her reign.
Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach, of the Philippines, spoke against her rival’s suggestion that they share the crown in an interview with Good Morning America on Monday.
The interview happened on Wurtzbach’s first official day as working Miss Universe, and she also took the time to speak about her plans for her reign and her ambitions to become a Bond girl.
‘I think it would be a little bit difficult for two girls to share a crown,’ Wurtzbach said, smiling, ‘but I have high hopes that this will this give great opportunities for me and Miss Colombia.’
Wurtzbach was responding to comments Miss Colombia made in a recent interview, saying the accident was a ‘great injustice’.
New Miss Universe Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach, from the Philippines, appeared on Good Morning America for an interview on Monday
During the pageant on December 20, Miss Colombia, Ariadna Gutierrez Arevalo, was initially crowned the winner by host Steve Harvey, when he accidentally announced the runner-up’s name first instead of the winner.
A few seconds later he was forced to apologize, and say that he had made a mistake.
The crown was then taken off Arevalo’s head and given to an equally confused and emotional Wutzbach.
In the immediate aftermath of the crowning mix-up, Wurtzbach says she was unable to comfort Arevalo since she was surrounded by a group of other women.
But in her GMA interview, Wurtzbach says she has since spoke to Arevalo, on Miss Colombia’s birthday on Christmas, and she says she’s recovering from the embarrassing live television disappointment.
The newly crowned queen spoke out against the suggestion that she share her reign with runner-up Miss Colombia
The interview happened on Wurtzbach’s first official day as working Miss Universe, and she also took the time to speak about her plans for her reign and her ambitions to become a Bond girl
‘She’s OK, I understand how she feels…I know that she is a beautiful young lady. She’s very talented and I think shell have a lot of other opportunities,’ Wurtzbach.
The interview came on the first official day of Wurtzbach’s reign as Miss Universe, a time she plans to spend raising awareness for HIV/Aids, cyberbully and perhaps achieving her dream of becoming a Bond girl.
Wurtzbach also says she doesn’t blame Harvey for what happened, and would love to see the ‘breath of fresh air’ back as host of the competition next year.
‘It’s OK. He’s huma – people make mistakes,’ Wurtzbach said. ‘It’s live television, it’s not easy.’
When asked how the crown feels, Wurtzbach said it’s ‘a little bit heavy, but I’m not complaining! It can stay there for a long time.’
On December 20, Miss Universe host Steve Harvey, left, accidentally crowned Miss Colombia Ariadna Gutierrez Arevalo, right, the winner after mixing up the names on live television
A few seconds after Miss Colombia was crowned, Harvey came out on stage to apologize and say he had named the wrong winner
The crown was taken off Miss Colombia’s head and given to the real winner, Miss Philippines, right
Miss Colombia was comforted by the other contestants after the emotional mix up last month
As televised on Fox, the contest was down to Ariadna Gutierrez Arevalo of Colombia and Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach of the Philippines when Harvey, a first-time Miss Universe host, proclaimed Gutierrez the winner after a long dramatic pause.
Music swelled, Gutierrez was fitted for a sash, given flowers and a crown was placed on her head. That made it two straight Miss Universe winners for Colombia, where the pageants are taken seriously. She bathed in applause for nearly two minutes before Harvey slowly made his way back onto the stage.
‘I have to apologize,’ he said. ‘The first runner-up is Colombia.’
The camera switched to a bewildered-looking Wurtzbach, who came back on the stage to get the crown as the same celebratory music repeated. Harvey said she’d be taking her first walk as Miss Universe, but mostly she stood immobile. A woman stood in between the two contestants, trying to comfort Gutierrez by rubbing her back.
Two minutes later, the comedian who hosts his own daytime talk show as well as the game show ‘Family Feud’ returned, saying ‘let me just take control of this.’
Harvey explained on the air that he misread the card he was given with the names of the winners. Colombia was listed as the first runner-up, and he’d been confused with how it was written. He held up the card for the camera.
‘It is my mistake,’ he said. ‘Still, it’s a great night. Please don’t hold it against the ladies. We feel very badly, but it’s still a great night.’
Celebrations quickly turned to anger in Colombia, where the hashtag ‘Respect the Crown’ was the country’s top trending topic on Twitter. Even the president was upset.
‘They put the crown on her head,’ President Juan Manuel Santos said Monday. ‘The photos are there to prove it. To me, as a Colombian, she is still Miss Universe.’
It was the pageant’s first time on Fox, and the Nielsen company said the contest was seen in the United States by 6.2 million people – strong numbers for the network. The previous Miss Universe on NBC, in January, reached 7.7 million people.
NBC dumped the pageant after Trump, its then-owner, angered many Latinos with comments about immigration. Trump subsequently sold the pageant and tweeted after the flub that it ‘would never have happened’ on his watch. He retweeted someone else’s comment that Trump must be happy that the pageant had gone ‘off the rails’ after he sold it.