Steve Harvey Reveals His One Regret About the Miss Universe Mix-Up's "Painful" Aftermath

Steve Harvey reflects on his infamous blunder at the 2015 Miss Universe competition, saying, "When I woke up the next morning, it was everywhere...and it was the worst week of my life."

By Alyssa Morin Apr 08, 2021 12:11 AMTags
Watch: Steve Harvey Feels "Horrible" Over Miss Universe Mistake

Steve Harvey is looking back at one of his biggest blunders.

No one knows the ins and outs of the entertainment business quite like the actor and longtime talk show host. However, even Hollywood pros make mistakes. And back in 2015, the Family Feud host had a major snafu—on live television, no less—when he announced the wrong Miss Universe winner.

The moment became infamous and it's something Steve described as "the worst week of my life" when speaking on SiriusXM's Comedy Gold Minds with Kevin Hart podcast on April 7. According to the 64-year-old star, the mix-up wasn't his fault.

"They said, 'We'll announce the second runner-up, and then we'll have standing there the first runner-up, and Miss Universe, and we'll do it that way,'" he recalled ahead of crowning the new winner. "Well, the lady that did the show when [Donald] Trump owned it, she decided on the night of, after two days of rehearsal, I'm putting the third name on there, and they printed it on the card."

He continued, "Well, in the teleprompter after I announced the second runner-up, the teleprompter said, 'And the new 2015 Miss Universe is...' The dude in my ear, said, 'Read the next name on the card, Steve. Hold, hold, hold.' I looked at the next card. I said, 'Miss Colombia!' That white boy said, 'Good job, Steve. Go to the back.'"

Steve Harvey's Most Controversial Moments

During the beauty pageant, Steve announced Miss Colombia, Ariadna Gutiérrez, as the 2015 Miss Universe. 

But minutes later, the host shocked viewers and audiences alike when he came back on stage and corrected his error, saying the real winner was, in fact, Miss Philippines, Pia Wurtzbach.

Steve revealed to Kevin Hart that he actually only learned about his blunder after someone from his team told him, "Big dog, you said the wrong name."

John Locher

"I said, 'Man, the f--k you talking about? I didn't say the wrong name, I read the name that was on the f--king card,'" the talk show host recalled of his conversation. "'... I said, 'Bitch, ain't nobody told me! Hold up, hold up. No, dog.' I'm really back there cussing."

The Steve Harvey Show host claimed the Miss Universe team originally wanted to correct the error the next day. However, he made the decision to "go out" on stage "and fix it."

"I took my stupid ass back out there," he shared. "I should have let them announce it the next day in the newspaper. I wouldn't have caught none of the hell I caught."

The Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man author opened up about the aftermath of his snafu, saying, "It was a painful ass night there, dog. I didn't know the pain I was in. I didn't know how bad the mistake was..."

"You know, I knew it was bad when it happened, and really it wasn't my fault..." he explained, adding, "When I woke up the next morning, it was everywhere. It was the headline in every country. And it was the worst week of my life, man, in show business."


According to Steve, people were driving by his home in Atlanta, Ga. and "throwing rocks" at his gate with the word "puta" written on notes. The term can hold several meanings in Spanish, including bitch, slut, motherf--ker and more.

"I don't know Spanish, but I know 'puta.' They call you 'puta' a lot of times," he said. "I know that ain't good because it was 'puta' in all the notes and all the texts."

Just four months ago, Miss Colombia reflected on the infamous moment in an exclusive interview with E! News.

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"I'm in awe that something so crazy and beyond reality could ever happen to me," Ariadna shared in December 2020. "It's crazy that it actually happened. It sounds like it's from a movie or something."

"In the beginning, I was devastated," she admitted. "It was my dream since I was a little girl. Imagine having your biggest dream come true, and then somebody just takes it away from you." 

Ariadna has since moved on from the incident and revealed she's actually close with both Steve and his wife Marjorie Bridges.

"I love him, and it wasn't his fault," she said. "It was just an accident or destiny—whatever you want to call it. It wasn't ever about him. People think that I hated him, that I have so much anger and hatred towards him. I never hated him. Throughout the competitions and rehearsals, I was his No. 1 fan."

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