The Colombian contestant, Ariadna Gutierrez Arevalo, was already wearing the Miss Universe crown when host Steve Harvey returned to announce on live television that he had mistakenly read from a cue card, and that the contestant from the Philippines was actually the winner.
Steve Harvey says Miss Colombia Ariadna Gutierrez is not returning his phone calls after his horrendous gaff in Las Vegas last month.
The talk show host finally broke his silence of more than two weeks after mistakenly calling out runner-up Gutierrez, not Miss Philippines Pia Wurtzbach, as the new Miss Universe.
During an interview on “The Steve Harvey Morning Show” on Monday, he revealed that he has tried to reach out to Gutierrez but has only heard radio silence.
"When I did it, it was horrible for Miss Colombia and she's the only one I haven't had a chance to talk to," Harvey said about the last several weeks. "I've had a chance to talk to Miss Philippines. I've talked to all the pageant people. I've talked to people backstage. Even me and the director had a long talk, but I haven't been able to reach out and talk to Miss Colombia. Now, have I tried? Yes, but have not gotten a response."
Of his blunder seen around the world, Harvey said that he read the name on the card – which included the names of two runner-ups and the winner – and everything “was cool” but then it wasn’t.
“All hell broke loose," Harvey said during the radio show. "All I heard was people say, 'That's the wrong name' ... and all I hear is confusion backstage."
Harvey, 58, said a producer kept going on about something needed to be done to fix the mistake and he took it upon himself to do that something.
"Did I make a mistake? Yes I did, wholeheartedly ... so, I did what I was trained to do by my father," he said. "You make a mistake, own up to it, so I went out there and I said I made a mistake and I tried to fix it, I tried to fix it right there."
He continued: "All I could think of was 'here's a problem.' The lady who won Miss Philippines is standing there as a loser and she got all the votes and the points."
Despite all the apologies, Harvey said he still regrets how it all went down – not for him, but for Gutierrez.
"The only regret I have is how this must have made the woman from Colombia feel ... I don't feel sorry for me, I don't feel sorry for the pageant. The pageant will now be bigger than it's ever been," he said. "I felt for her more than me because ... I haven't been waiting all my life for this moment."
Meanwhile, speaking to the Spanish-language network Univision in an interview that aired Monday, Gutierrez expressed her displeasure about how the situation was handled.
"In four minutes they destroy your dreams, they throw [them] in a bag, and they throw [them] in the trash …" she said. "They could have done it another way… I feel like it doesn't matter to them the feelings of a girl who has worked her whole life for a dream."
The 22-year-old said that she is calmer now – after she “cried ton’ – and that those four minutes with the crown on her head were the happiest of her life.
“I was Miss Universe for four minutes; that will stay in history… It’s better to be in history than to be Miss Universe for a year,” she said.