Despite his ceremony-ending mistake that named the wrong woman Miss Universe on Sunday, Steve Harvey is “absolutely” welcome back to host the 2016 pageant, says an executive with the company that produces the event.
Mark Shapiro, chief content officer for WME | IMG who was backstage at the pageant, made the comments on Jim Rome’s CBS Sports Radio show Tuesday. Shapiro said the Family Feud host was “humiliated” by accidentally announcing Miss Colombia Ariadna Gutierrez as Miss Universe when, in fact, Miss Philippines Pia Wurtzbach had won the crown.
“He was very remorseful in that dressing room. That wasn’t a good scene. I mean, he just felt miserable that he let so many people down,” Shapiro said.
The exec also called ideas (including one raised by TVLine) that the blunder might have been staged in order to get people talking about the pageant “ridiculous.”
He added: “That’s just humorous. All I can do is just laugh that off,”
Despite the low moment, Shapiro maintained that Harvey “did a great job. He was funny, he was informative, he’s high energy, he’s got a great following… I definitely want him back, and I would hate to see him not come back. He’s going to want a shot to redeem himself.
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