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Steve Harvey sat down with Miss Colombia, Ariadna Gutierrez, for the first time since the comedian mistakenly crowned her Miss Universe before revealing that he made a mistake and that Miss Philippines, Pia Wurtzbach, was the winner.
The talk-show host devoted two episodes of his eponymous daytime program to revealing the truth about what happened on the pageant, telling his side of the viral gaffe, and talking with Wurtzbach and Gutierrez about how they felt during and after his mistake. Harvey said he especially wanted to check in with Gutierrez, whom he hadn’t spoken to since the pageant.
“I want to make sure she’s OK,” Harvey told the audience before his interview with Gutierrez, which aired on Tuesday. “I hated what happened for her. I do need this, though. I really need to see her. I really, really do. I need her to hear it from me. I hope she’s forgiving. If she’s not, I’ll stay in the mist a little while longer. I’m tired of it, really.”
When Gutierrez walked out onstage, the two shared a long hug before an emotional Harvey apologized for what happened.
“You’re the one person that I really wanted to talk to,” he said. “Because of a mistake I made, I cast you into a spotlight of a place that I never intended to — that I would not want to happen to anybody. I just want to say how sorry I am. I’m beyond sorry for what happened that night and that it was you.”
Gutierrez said that after the incident, it took her some time to accept that the viral moment actually occurred, adding that she took some time away, with her family.
“After all that happened, the only thing I wanted to do was, like, being with my family and, like, take a rest from everything that I went through,” she said. “It took time because I couldn’t stop thinking, like, ‘Oh my God, it really happened.’ It was like a nightmare. I was watching, like, the videos and I couldn’t believe that happened to me. I needed time to be with my family to calm down and think about what I’m going to say now, what I’m going to do now. I’ve already moved on, but this is our destiny. That’s why we’re here.”
Gutierrez also indicated to Harvey that rumors of her filing a lawsuit over the incident aren’t true.
“I’m not going to take your mansions or your car,” she said. “I never thought of suing you. That’s not me. That’s not who I am. But a lot of lawyers wanted me to sue.”
Indeed, Gutierrez indicated she was over it, telling Harvey, “I really forgive you.”
And she apologized on behalf of Colombians who criticized Harvey.
“I don’t feel proud about that, because Colombians are not like that, you know,” she said. “But we have to understand that people got angry because they felt like they got robbed … people felt bad in Colombia and in the Latin community. They felt humiliated, and it was so harsh to watch the show and that moment when I was waving my little flag. I don’t know how to say it now, but it was like really, really, really harsh to watch it. I have to apologize for them because we’re not like that.”
Harvey and Gutierrez also shared their favorite memes of the mistake, with Gutierrez saying her favorite was the Oprah meme reading, “You’re Miss Universe, and you’re Miss Universe! Everyone is Miss Universe!”
“If I’d have gave everybody a car, they’d have forgave me right away,” Harvey said. “But I ain’t got Oprah money, so ….”
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