From great tragedy can come great triumph, and no one knows that better than Ariadna Gutierrez.
The 2015 Miss Universe runner-up appeared on Steve Harvey‘s talk show on Wednesday — over two years after the host’s infamous mix-up at the pageant. At the time, Harvey mistakenly announced — and crowned! — Gutierrez, Miss Colombia, as the winner. He realized the error a few minutes later, and informed Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach, Miss Philippines, that she was the real crown-holder.
“That night right there was so crazy, man,” said Harvey, 61, reflecting on the snafu.
But over time, he and Gutierrez, whom he called a “sweetheart,” eventually became friends.
“Her family was really kind to me — her father was who I really wanted to be cool with,” he said, quipping that if anyone had done that to his daughter, he’d be “looking for their a— for a long time.”
And even though she didn’t take home the crown, Gutierrez, 24, said that pageant still “changed my life forever.”
“I got to be in a movie with Vin Diesel!” she gushed, referencing last year’s xXx: Return of Xander Cage. “Now I have my own sunglasses line — everything changed.”
In 2017, Harvey returned to host the pageant once again — and made light of his big flub the year before, quipping that he had eye surgery done to help him see the cards better and announce the correct winner.
“I know what you’re thinking — ‘Is that the guy from last year? Did they bring back the guy from last year?’ ” he said. “When you make a mistake you just have to keep moving forward.”