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Beauty With Attitude

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    (Photo : Getty Images/Frederick M. Brown)

    Donald Trump upset a lot of people with his anti-immigration comments. The current Republican frontrunner got fired from NBC and is being probed by New York City authorities. One of Trump's biggest critics was Jeannie Mai,  who co-hosts Trump's Miss USA pageant. Mai also hosts the daytime talk show The Real.

    Jeannie Mai says she will continue to co-host Donald Trump's Miss USA Pageant even thought she takes issue with Trump's remarks.

    "While I absolutely do not condone Mr. Trump's statements, after careful deliberation I have decided to continue my role as co-host of the upcoming Miss USA Pageant," Mai, 36, says in a statement.

    But she's not doing it for Trump, Mai is doing it for the women in the competition.

    "I support every single woman that is standing on that stage that understands what it's like to be committed to getting to where they are right now," Mai told ET.

    "If this one man is going to make these comments it's going to stop you from representing your family and what you believe in? No, not for me at least."

    Mai said she is supported by her family.

    "For the past several years, I have been co-hosting both Miss USA and Miss Universe aligned to support President Paula Shugart. I can't abandon these women when they need our support now more than ever. The mission of the Miss Universe organization has always been to unite women from all over the world and celebrate different cultures.They empower women to become role models in their communities in order to build self-esteem and advance philanthropic initiatives."

    Trump, 69, Mexican immigrants "rapists" who bring "drugs" and "crime" across the border.

    "When Mexico sends its people, they're not sending their best. They're sending people that have lots of problems. They're bringing drugs. They're bringing crime. They're rapists," Trump said while throwing his hat into the ring.

    Trump insisted his words were taken out of context.

    "I never singled out Mexico," Trump explained to ET.

    "What I said is that people are coming across the border and they are coming through Mexico. Mexico is doing very little to stop it, that I can tell you. They are coming from all over the place, but it's illegal immigration. They come in unlawfully and there is tremendous crime around the people that are coming in."

    Cheryl Burke and rapper Flo Rida pulled out of the annual beauty contest.

    NBC and Univision will not to air Miss USA. Colombian singer J Balvin canceled his performance. Trump is now suing Univision for $500 million.

    The pageant will be in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on July 12 as planned. 

    Source:, July 3, 2015

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  • 07/03/15--21:08: Miss World America 2015

  • Critical Beauty Images

    Victoria Mendoza, 19, from Phoenix, Arizona was crowned as the first Miss World America on July 3 at the Auditorium of the University of the District of Columbia, Washington, D.C. She will now compete in Miss World 2015 pageant to be held in Sanya, China in December. Her court includes 1st runner-up Teresa Scanlan of Nebraska (who was Miss America 2011), 2nd runner-up Rachel White of Texas, 3rd runner-up Kristy Landers Niedenfuer of Louisiana (who represented Tennessee in Miss USA 2014),  and 4th runner-up Arielle Saige Rosmarino of Virginia (who competed in Miss USA 2014).

    Miss United States 2014 Elizabeth Safrit and Miss World 2014 Rolene Strauss assisted in the coronation of the winner. 51 young women from all over the United States including American Samoa participated in the first edition of the pageant. The state of Wyoming did not send a representative.

    The 22 quarter-finalists were cut down to 12 semi-finalists which included the delegates from Missouri, Louisiana, Virginia, Arizona, Texas, Nebraska, Delaware, Maryland, Kansas, Illinois, Florida and
    Massachusetts. The Beauty With A Purpose Award was won by Maude Gorman of Massachusetts.

    Photo credit: Miss World America 

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    Miss Universe Paulina Vega is being urged to give up her crown to protest organization owner Donald Trump's harsh remarks about Mexicans. Trump has called her a 'hypocrite' for not stepping down herself

    Real-estate magnate and presidential candidate Donald Trump blasted another one of his critics early Sunday morning.
    Trump said the reigning Miss Universe pageant winner, Colombia's Paulina Vega, was a "hypocrite" for criticizing him without giving up her award.
    "Miss Universe, Paulina Vega, criticized me for telling the truth about illegal immigration, but then said she would keep the crown-Hypocrite," Trump, who helps run the pageant, tweeted at roughly 5 a.m.
    According to the Associated Press, Vega said last Thursday that Trump's controversial comments about Mexico were "hurtful and unfair" but she had no intention of giving up her crown "because the Miss Universe organization does meaningful social work in communities around the world."
    She was referring to comments made during the Republican businessman's June 16 campaign launch, in which he railed against Mexico for supposedly sending its "rapists" and drug runners to the US.
    "When Mexico sends its people, they're not sending their best," Trump said then, according to a transcript. "They're bringing drugs. They're bringing crime. They're rapists. And some, I assume, are good people."
    Several prominent companies have cut ties with him. These include Macy's, which has a Trump clothing line and fragrance, and two television stations that were going to air the upcoming Miss USA pageant.
    Trump reacted aggressively to each of the provocations. He said he is suing Univision for $500 million and slammed NBC for being "weak."

    Source: Business Insider, July 5, 2015

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  • 07/05/15--11:48: Miss Venezuela World 2015

  •  Anyela Galante Salerno, 24,  from Guanare (in the state of Portuguesa) was crowned the new Miss Venezuela Mundo 2015 at the Venevision Studio 1 in Caracas. Twelve young women competed in this year's pageant. Galante will now compete in Miss World 2015 this December in China. The first runner-up is Karielys Cuadros (left) and the second runner-up is Maria Jose Brito (right) 

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  • 07/05/15--18:53: Miss United States 2015


    Summer Priester of South Carolina was crowned Miss United States 2015 at the University of the District of Columbia Auditorium on Sunday, July 5th. She is the first national winner from her state. Her court includes 1st runner-up Haley Holloway of West Virginia, 2nd runner-up  Iman Oubou of New York,  3rd runner-up Sara Blanche Comiskey of Louisiana, and 4th runner-up Katie Himes of Kentucky.  


    Completing the top 10 were the delegates from North Carolina, Tennessee, California, Virginia and Maryland. Brookley Wofford of Minnesota won the Miss Photogenic award while Leah Soloperto of New Hampshire won the People's Choice award.

    Priester had competed in Miss South Carolina USA 2015 where she placed 3rd runner-up. Unfortunately. she will not compete internationally. Her predecessor, Elizabeth Safrit of North Carolina, was appointed as the U.S. delegate to Miss World 2014 after the director of Miss United States, Christopher Wilmer, was awarded the U.S. franchise for Miss World in early 2014 by Julia Morley, the CEO of Miss World Organization. Morley wanted a national pageant to select the official U.S. representative to Miss World and not just appoint one. On July 3, Victoria Mendoza of Arizona was crowned the first Miss World America during a national pageant which gives her the right to represent the U.S. in Miss World 2015 to be held in Sanya, China in December.


    At the same event, Andrea Gibau of New York was crowned Miss Teen United States and  Gracie Gipson was crowned Miss Junior Teen United States.

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    Fashion expert Jeannie Mai has become the latest to distance themselves from the Miss USA pageant in light of Donald Trump's anti-immigration remarks.
    Just days after Mai sat down exclusively with ET to explain why she was staying on as Miss USA co-host, the 36-year-old announced on Monday via a message posted to Face that she was withdrawing from the show.
    "Last week I announced my heart-felt decision to support the women of Miss USA by remaining on board as a co-host," Mai wrote. "My focus was strictly on the women involved, who share the same ethics of hard work, commitment and passion for their careers and causes that I do. I have co-hosted for the last five years various Miss Universe events, and I'm grateful for the many women I've met and friends I've made along the way. I feel terrible that the women competing this year have fallen victim to current events.
    "Let me be clear, I condemn the recent words of Mr. Trump, and find them immensely offensive. At the time I made my decision to remain part of the Miss USA pageant, I was under the impression that Mr. Trump would no longer be involved in the production of the show in any capacity whatsoever. In addition, given Mr. Trump's ongoing antics, including his most recent episode today with the current Miss Universe, it is clear that Mr. Trump's actions have and will continue to distract focus away from the real stars of the show -- the women involved in the pageant.
    "Therefore, I am respectfully withdrawing from my responsibilities and commitment as co-host of Miss USA. From the beginning, I announced publicly that I was donating my compensation to a worthy charity. Although I will no longer be participating as a co-host, I still want to support the women competing in the pageant. I feel the best way to show that is to lend my support to this year's winner of Miss USA and to make the donation I promised to her platform and charity.
    "Ladies, you worked so hard to get here. I am proud of who you are and wish you the best of luck Sunday evening."
    Last week, Mai spoke to ET in an exclusive sit-down, saying that she would stay with the pageant despite Trump's controversial comments, because of the hard work the women of the competition put forth and to project a positive message to the country.
    "I support every single woman that is standing on that stage that understands what it's like to be committed to getting to where they are right now," Mai told ET. "If this one man is going to make these comments it's going to stop you from representing your family and what you believe in? No, not for me at least."
    Mai's exit follows those of Cheryl Burke and Thomas Roberts, who were slated to co-host the pageant.
    On Monday, Trump came out in defense of the speech that caused all the backlash in a statement.
    "I don't see how there is any room for misunderstanding or misinterpretation of the statement I made on June 16 during my presidential announcement speech," Trump wrote. "Here is what I said, and yet this statement is deliberately distorted by the media: 'When Mexico (meaning the Mexican Government) sends its people, they're not sending their best. They're not sending you (pointing to the audience). They're not sending you (pointing again). They're sending people that have lots of problems, and they're bringing those problems to us. They're bringing drugs. They're bringing crime. They're rapists. And some, I assume, are good people! But I speak to border guards and they tell us what we're getting. And it only makes common sense. They're sending us not the right people. It's coming from more than Mexico. It's coming from all over South and Latin America, and it's coming probably from the Middle East. But we don't know. Because we have no protection and we have no competence, we don't know what's happening. And it's got to stop and it's got to stop fast.'"
    "What can be simpler or more accurately stated?" Trump continued. "The Mexican government is forcing their most unwanted people into the United States ... I have great respect for Mexico and love their people and their peoples' great spirit. The problem is, however, that their leaders are far smarter, more cunning, and better negotiators than ours. To the citizens of the United States, who I will represent far better than anyone else as President, the Mexican government is not our friend...and why should they be when the relationship is totally one sided in their favor on both illegal immigration and trade. I have pointed this out during my speeches and it is something Mexico doesn't want me to say. In actuality, it was only after my significant rise in the polls that Univision, previously my friend, went ballistic. I believe that my examples of bad trade deals for the United States was of even more concern to the Mexican government than my talk of border security."
    The Miss USA pageant will now air on REELZ channel, after NBC and Univision cut ties with Trump.
    No replacement co-hosts have been named.
    Source: Entertainment Tonight, July 6, 2015

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    Todd Newton, Alex Wehrley

    TV personalities step in after five other hosts back out in wake of presidential candidate’s controversial Mexican immigrant comments
    The Miss USA pageant has named Todd Newton and Alex Wehrley as its new hosts, TheWrap has learned.
    Newton won a Daytime Emmy in 2010 for hosting “Family Game Night,” while Wehrley was Miss Wisconsin USA in 2009. OK! TV’s Julie Alexandria has also been named as backstage host.
    They join the pageant amid ongoing controversy surrounding its co-owner, Donald Trump.
    On Tuesday, Jeannie Mai joined fellow former co-hosts Thomas Roberts, Cheryl Burke, Roselyn Sanchez and Cristian de la Fuente in dropping out of Miss USA.
    The five hosts all walked away after Trump called Mexican immigrants “rapists” during his speech last month announcing his run for the White House.
    Univision was the first television partner to cut ties with the Miss Universe Organization following Trump’s comments. The network’s contract dictated that it would pay $13.5 million over five years to simulcast Miss USA  in Spanish. Trump is suing Univision for $500 million for dropping out.
    Reelz CEO Stan E. Hubbard told TheWrap that the network “does not endorse Trump’s comments regarding Mexicans. Hubbard, whose father, Stanley Hubbard, is a regular donator to Republican political campaigns, added, “I am not a supporter of Donald Trump’s for president.”

    Source:, July 7, 2015

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    Set your watch for the prelims of Miss USA 2015 tonight which will be streamed live starting at 9 PM (Eastern), 6 PM (Pacific).

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    Judges Panel Revealed for 2015 MISS USA PAGEANT Airing on Reelz
    REELZ today announced the panel of nine telecast judges for the 2015 MISS USA(R) Pageant are all former titleholders of the Miss Universe Organization. The announcement comes on the heels of the news that Emmy Award-winning host Todd Newton and former Miss Wisconsin USA 2009 Alex Wehrley will co-host the 2015 MISS USA(R) Pageant, which airs live on REELZ Sunday, July 12 at 8 p.m. ET and 5 p.m. PT. Country music star and former "The Voice" contestant Adley Stump will perform as guest vocalist with a live in-house band. Music mogul Master P and his daughter Cymphonique- stars of the upcoming REELZ series "Master P's Family Empire"- will make special guest appearances with backstage host OK! TV's Julie Alexandria during the live telecast.

    The Panel of Judges Includes:

    Nana Meriwether - In addition to holding the MISS USA 2012 title, Meriwether is a two-time All-American athlete. She captained UCLA volleyball to the semi-finals and broke three NCAA records in the process. She graduated from UCLA with highest honors and a degree in political science, going on to complete postgraduate pre-med studies at USC. Meriwether was born in South Africa where she grew up in rural villages while her father was a medical missionary. She is the co-founder of the non-profit Meriwether Foundation, which serves the most impoverished sectors in five southern African nations. Meriwether currently lives in New York City where she works at Harper's Bazaar magazine.

    Leila Umenyiora - In 2011, Umenyiora (formerly Lopes) became the first woman from Angola to win the Miss Universe crown. Umenyiora used her title to champion HIV/AIDS prevention and works with organizations such as Youth AIDS/PSI, Latino Commission on AIDS, and Gay Men's Health Crisis, among others. She was named the Drylands Ambassador by the United Nation Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) in an effort to combat land degradation - an issue that affects not only her country but the entire continent of Africa.

    Rima Fakih - Crowned Miss USA 2010, Fakih became the first Muslim woman to ever win the title. Born in Lebanon, she immigrated to America in 1993. Following her reign, Fakih was named one of the Top 100 Most Powerful Arab Women, ambassador of the Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee and honored by the American Task Force of Lebanon. Notable moments include presenting at Ronald Reagan's Centennial Celebration and attending the American Chamber of Commerce conference alongside former President Bill Clinton. Rima recently returned to the United States after a successful run competing in the Lebanese edition of "Dancing with the Stars."

    Crystle Stewart - As Miss Texas USA, Stewart won the title of Miss USA in 2008 and was a spokesperson for breast and ovarian cancer education, research, legislation and early detection. Stewart donates her time to Best Buddies, an organization that pairs mentally challenged children and adults with a friend. Stewart currently stars in the Tyler Perry sitcom "For Better or Worse" on OWN.

    Danielle Doty - After winning Miss Texas Teen USA, Doty won the title of Miss Teen USA 2011. She has made guest appearances at notable events such as Glamour's Women Of The Year Awards and The People's Choice Awards, in addition to her work with the USO. Most recently Doty appeared as a host for FOX SPORTS SOUTHWEST and the nationally televised show, "Girls on the Go" Driven by FORD.

    Tara Conner - Conner won Miss USA in 2006 and became the first woman from Kentucky to win the title. After a very public struggle with her own addiction, Conner has become an advocate and works to raise awareness that addiction is a disease and many people go on to lead a healthy, productive life in recovery. In addition to her advocacy work, Conner is a television host, singer/songwriter, actress and model.

    Kimberly Pressler - Since winning Miss USA in 1999, Pressler has appeared on television screens across the globe as a sports reporter and host for networks such as FOX Sports, ABC, MTV and Red Bull Media, covering everything from X GAMES to the ACIS Fitness National Championship. Currently, Pressler is in her sixth season as lane-side reporter for ESPN on the PBA Tour.

    Brook Lee - Lee is the only native Hawaiian to win both Miss USA and Miss Universe titles. After winning Miss Universe in 1997, Lee made several appearances in television before becoming a host for ESPN's "Hawaii Sports Adventure" and E!'s "Behind the Scenes Look at Miss Universe." Brook is also a tech ambassador for

    Michelle McLean-Bailey - International TV personality, motivational speaker, entrepreneur and philanthropist, McLean-Bailey won Miss Universe at 19 for Namibia in 1992. Among her many philanthropic efforts, she established the Michelle McLean Children Trust, now in its 24th year, to raise funds for education of underprivileged children in Namibia. She has worked with Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt on a variety of charitable projects. McLean-Bailey has also been an ambassador for UNICEF and the Nelson Mandela Children's Fund. As a globally recognized motivational speaker on the topic of "Success Under Pressure," she aspires to be an agent of positive change in people's lives around the world.

    Special Guests for Live Backstage Coverage:

    Master P - Self-made hip-hop mogul, entrepreneur and philanthropist, Master P is a driven businessman who presides over a diversified business empire. Most of all, he is a loving father who guides his children to succeed. Master P stars in the upcoming REELZ original series "Master P's Family Empire" alongside his daughter Cymphonique.

    Cymphonique - Actress, singer, dancer and writer, Cymphonique is one of Hollywood's biggest teen phenomena. She is an R&B, pop and hip-hop artist and recently created a book series called Fabulous Girls to empower young girls. Cymphonique founded Fabulous Girls Charity to help bring awareness to kids with cancer and a performing arts school with the Let The Kids Grow Foundation.


    Viewers can catch the excitement and the action of the 2015 MISS USA(R) Pageant on REELZ, which reaches 70 million homes on DIRECTV channel 238, DISH Network channel 299, Verizon FiOS TV channel 233, Time Warner Cable channel 128, AT&T U-verse channels 799/1799HD and cable systems nationwide. Find REELZ in your area by visiting REELZ is a High-Definition network and if it is not available, or not in HD, on your cable or telco provider, we encourage viewers to call them and ask for it.

    About ReelzChannel - Hollywood Happens Here(TM)

    REELZ is a leading independent cable and satellite general entertainment network, connecting its viewers across America with the magic, wonder and excitement of Hollywood wherever it happens. The network is home to cutting-edge factual entertainment and reality programs, compelling television events, miniseries, movies and series featuring big stories and big stars. Programming ranges from the critically acclaimed and award-winning The Kennedys to Hollywood Hillbillies, Beverly Hills Pawn, Branson Taxi, Autopsy: The Last Hours Of... , Celebrity Legacies, OK! TV, Hollywood Scandals, the upcoming series Master P's Family EMPIRE and miniseries The Kennedys: After Camelot and much more that connects directly to the world of entertainment. REELZ also showcases top movie and entertainment expert Leonard Maltin who provides specific on-air recommendations for movies viewers can watch at home. Owned by Hubbard Media Group, REELZ is headquartered in Albuquerque, NM with national ad sales based in New York City with offices in Boston and Chicago. As one of the last truly independent television networks remaining in today's media landscape REELZ has created the Independence Happens Here(TM) website to help keep free thought and innovation alive by highlighting the importance of independent businesses. The website can be found at
    Image courtesy of Miss USA
    SOURCE:, 7/10/2015

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  • 07/11/15--16:21: Miss World Argentina 2015

  • Daniela Mirón, 22, was crowned Miss World Argentina 2015 last night at the Centro de Convenciones de City Center in Rosario. The first princess is Helena Zuiani (right) and the second princess is Priscila Carello (left). Daniela will not represent Argentina in the 2015 Miss World pageant to be held in Sanya, China in December. 

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  • 07/11/15--16:36: Miss Universe Korea 2015

  • Lee Min-ji, 24, from Gyeonggi Province, was crowned Miss Universe Korea 2015 last July 9th at the Universal Arts Center in Seoul. The runners-up were Kim Jung Jin, 20, of Sejong, and Kim Ye-rin, 19, of Jeju.  Min-ji will now represent Korea in the next edition of Miss Universe who date and venue have not yet been confirmed.

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    BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Olivia Jordan of Oklahoma was crowned Miss USA on Sunday, wearing a hot pink strapless dress as she deftly fielded the interview portion of the competition by saying the country needed to improve race relations to beat out 50 other contestants.
    After weeks of controversy generated by pageant co-owner Donald Trump’s critical comments about Mexican immigrants, the pageant passed with no mention of the real estate mogul who was not in attendance.
    Instead, the focus was on women like Jordan and others who’d worked hard to get to the stage.
    The 26-year-old winner was followed by first runner-up Ylianna Guerra, 22, of Texas, and second runner-up Anea Garcia, 20, of Rhode Island. They were followed by 25-year-old Miss Nevada Brittany McGown as third runner-up and then Miss Maryland Mame Adjei, 23, rounding out the top five.
    Jordan, who takes over from 2014 winner Nia Sanchez of Nevada, was a standout during the interview segment when each contestant was asked two questions and given 30 seconds to answer each. When asked what the next big issue is that the U.S. needs to tackle, she said it was race relations.
    “We have not solved this issue,” Jordan said. “We really need to work on being an accepting society.”

    During the second interview question about which woman should be put on the new $10 bill, she initially said she wished television star Oprah Winfrey was eligible before ending by suggesting Harriet Tubman, a former slave who led other escaped slaves to freedom.
    Asked afterward by The Associated Press about the Trump controversy, Jordan responded: “We have freedom of speech in this country, and immigration is certainly an important issue.”
    She added, “This organization is not one person. It’s definitely not just me. It’s a family. This organization celebrates diversity, and I think that was clear on the stage tonight, and I look forward to spreading a message of love and diversity and acceptance.”
    The annual contest, generally known for its dazzling dresses and sexy swimsuits, was this year under an uncomfortable spotlight due to comments made by Trump, the pageant’s co-owner.
    Trump slammed Mexican immigrants during his announcement that he was running for president. That led to widespread fallout against his business dealings, including the pageant.
    Broadcasters, including NBC and Univision, dropped the pageant and a slew of celebrities lined up to perform, judge and host dropped out just as the pageant was kicking into high gear in Baton Rouge.
    Pageant organizers rushed to fill the gap so the show could go on. Satellite and cable channel Reelz television stepped in to air the show, while assuring people that Trump would not benefit financially. It was also streamed live on the pageant’s website. And former Miss USA and Miss Universe winners were recruited as judges.
    The pageant featured an evening wear and swimsuit competition as well as the question and answer session. The preliminary contest was held earlier this week and then the number of women remaining was progressively narrowed during the course of Sunday evening’s telecast.
    Jordan, of Tulsa, Oklahoma attended Boston University, where she earned a B.S. in Health Science and was a group fitness instructor and a personal trainer. She has appeared in several national and international commercials and feature films, most recently, Hot Tub Time Machine 2.

    Source: The Washington Times, July 13, 2015

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    After ratings for Sunday's Miss USA pageant were announced, Reelz Channel's CEO said the network would like to air the Miss Universe pageant.
    Move over, NBC. The Reelz Channel is very interested in becoming the new home of the Miss Universe Organization's system of pageants. 
    "Miss USA 2015 is Oklahoma!"
    This comes after it aired the Miss USA pageant Sunday night, having acquired the telecast just 10 days before its air date once NBC decided not to air the pageant because of the controversial comments part-owner Donald Trump made about Mexican immigrants.
    Not surprisingly, Reelz CEO Stan E. Hubbard is now saying the network would be interested in picking up the Miss Universe pageant if its telecast becomes available. 
    While it'd be a good deal for Reelz, it could go either way for the pageant organization.
    Sunday's three-hour Miss USA pageant saw some of the highest ratings Reelz has ever received: 925,000 viewers. Yep, slightly under 1 million. 
    That's the second highest ratings Reelz has ever received, just behind its 2011 miniseries "The Kennedys," which starred Katie Holmes. 1.3 million people tuned in for the show's premiere. 
    Reelz turned around and aired the pageant again directly after the first telecast Sunday — that second airing brought in just under 250,000 viewers according to Variety. 
    And if you only counted viewers who watched at least six minutes of the three-hour-long production, then the New York Post says the Miss USA pageant brought in around 2.5 million viewers for Reelz. 
    Whichever way you choose to look at the number of viewers, it's still a large nosedive from what the Miss USA pageant brought in last year on NBC.
    5.6 million people tuned in to watch Nevada's Nia Sanchez get crowned Miss USA in 2014. 
    Still, Forbes points out this year's numbers are as much as nine times what Reelz brings in on average on a Sunday evening. The network is only available in 70 million homes and its shows focus primarily on celebrity backstories. 
    And if Reelz acquired the rights to the Miss Universe pageant sooner rather than later, it would have plenty of time to bring in some money from advertisers. 
    Having acquired the rights to the Miss USA pageant just 10 days before its July 12 air date, Reelz mostly played promos for its other shows — like "Master P's Family Empire" — during the telecast. 
    And Hubbard expressing interest in airing the Miss Universe pageant, which is usually in the beginning of the year, is a good thing for the pageant system. 
    It means the organization has a network to fall back on if NBCUniversal, which is its other owner, decides to cut ties completely with the pageant system. So far, NBC only announced it wouldn't air Miss USA.
    Source:, July 15, 2015

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    Donald Trump is ready to ditch the tiara.
    The real-estate magnate is exploring a sale of his 49 percent stake in the Miss Universe Organization after NBC and Univision dumped the beauty pageant business over remarks he made about Mexican immigrants in announcing his run for president last month, The Post has learned.
    Trump is mulling a sale after getting approached by several interested parties, said a source close to the situation. NBCUniversal co-owns Miss Universe, which also includes the Miss American and Miss Teen pageants.
    NBC and Spanish-language broadcaster Univision refused to air the Miss USA pageant, as scheduled, on July 12. Niche cable network Reelz picked up the rights.
    The pageant drew just 925,000 viewers on Reelz, down sharply from the 5.6 million viewers who watched the show on NBC in 2014, according to Nielsen data.
    Trump has sued Univision in New York state court for $500 million over its decision to drop the pageant programming and plans to file a similar suit against NBC, a source said.
    But the fallout could not have come at a worse time for Miss Universe
    While Trump didn’t start the Miss USA pageant, he did come up with the idea of turning it into franchise business. Franchisees who buy the rights to hold state contests are busy preparing for pageant season that kicks off in the fall.
    In New York, Debbie Miller and Cindy Provost are trying to sign up sponsors and contestants, who pay to participate. The Miss New York USA and Miss New York Teen USA contests are scheduled for Jan. 15 to 17 in West Harrison. Franchisees will have a harder time attracting interest if there is no hope for the local winner to get on broadcast television.
    “There have been some [local] sponsors that showed concern,” actress Shanna Moakler, who also runs the Nevada Miss USA and Miss Teen pageants, told The Post.
    The organization can rebound if Trump sells or finds new broadcast partners willing to replace NBC and Univision, she added.
    “I’m hoping within the next couple of months they figure out what to do with the franchise,” Moakler said. “It’s really critical something takes place in the next couple of months.”
    She said she makes a small amount of money from the pageant after accounting for the franchise fee she pays.
    “Right now I think it would be best if we sold to another person because his comments were so polarizing,” said Moakler, who has a teenage daughter with Mexican-American boxer Oscar De La Hoya.
    ‘They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us,” Trump said during his presidential announcement speech. They’re bringing drugs, they’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.’ “
    Moakler said she supported the organization over the past month because the contest is about the women and not its owners.
    “I am not going to allow comments made in the political arena impact my girls.”

    Source: The New York Post, July 17, 2015

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  • 07/19/15--05:52: Miss Universe Thailand 2015

  • 21-year-old Aniporn Chalermburanawong (center) as crowned Miss Universe Thailand 2015 at Royal Paragon Hall, Siam Paragon in Bangkok on July 18. She will now compete in the next edition of Miss Universe pageant whose date and venue have not yet been confirmed.  

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    Miss USA 2015: Olivia Jordan Says Nude Movie Scenes Are 'OK' For Miss Universe 2015

    Olivia Jordan says that everything is “OK” for Miss Oklahoma now that she has been crowned Miss USA 2015. While Jordan is all set to represent the United States for Miss Universe 2015, some beauty pageant fans question whether her nude movie scenes should disqualify her from competing based upon the standard contracts. But Jordan thinks that seeing Miss USA naked in a TV show is a “positive thing.”
    In a related report by the Inquisitr, the new Miss USA 2015 has been featured in movies like Ted, Here Comes The Boom, Jobs, Sophie, Starving In Suburbia, 10.0 Earthquake, and Hot Tub Time Machine 2. According to pageantry fans, what the Miss Universe 2015 officials may consider questionable is Olivia Jordan’s nude scene in the TV series Murder In The First.
    The reason for the controversy is that Jordan strips down to nothing but a green bra. During multiple scenes, she is completely naked from the chest down. The camera also lingers on her bare behind as she leans over.
    When it comes to the Miss USA contract, you would presume this would be a problem since a requirement for becoming Miss USA 2015 asks all beauty queens whether they have “appeared, or agreed to appear, in any other television show or motion picture.” In addition, the contract stipulates that being “photographed in a state of partial or total nudity or in a lewd, compromising or sexually suggestive manner constitutes a violation of this provision.”

    When Olivia Jordan spoke to the radio talk show hosts at 97 Rock, they asked why she is not in trouble already, so she provided an explanation for these nude scenes. “It was something that I shared with them before – I had to make sure that I cleared with them and it was still on brand with what they are doing. I’m an actress and that was an acting role for a television show. I have no regrets about my decision.”
    In response, the radio show hosts said,“We have no regrets at all… seeing your heiny.”
    “Well, good,” said Olivia to laughter. “It was a great acting opportunity and, you know, if you look at all the actresses who have come before me, nudity is sometimes necessary to tell a story.”
    At this point, the radio show hosts brought up the case of Vanessa Williams, who lost her Miss America crown after nude photos were leaked. They suggested the lack of an outcry over Olivia Jordan’s nude video was a “step toward openness,” which Miss USA 2015 agreed to readily. “You know, I think we need to come into a time where we empower women and this was a choice I consciously made to take an acting role. I think that… I celebrate the female body and not everyone is going to support that or love that out of Miss USA but I think that’s a positive thing, I think we’re moving in a positive direction of acceptance. I think that we should accept people. Society is getting more understanding about what is real, what is real life. I think that acting is a reflection of what real life is.”

    Miss USA 2015 Olivia Jordan (Getty Images)

    At this point, it remains to be seen whether the Miss Universe 2015 organizers would agree, but based upon their prior history it seems very likely. Back in 2010, multiple Miss Universe contestants were part of an official photo shoot which featured body paint and topless photos. When Miss Universe was criticized for this decision, this is how the organization responded.

    “The contestants who compete at Miss Universe are diverse as they represent more than 82 countries around the globe. Many of their cultures embrace nudity,” a rep said in a statement at the time, according to Fox News. “These photos are a form of artistic expression for each contestant and we respect their desire to pose topless, or not. We feel the images captured are fashionable and cutting edge!” Angie Meyer has worked with the Miss USA contestants and the organization for years, and she believes the trend toward open nudity is bad for the beauty pageant industry.

    “It’s alarming that this has been turned into a playboy-esque masquerade,” Meyer said. “When you bring nudity into the equation, the pageant no longer becomes about the entire package of brains and beauty. Rather, the focus shifts to body image. The notion that ‘beauty’ embodies absolute physical perfection is a frightening slippery slope, and quite dangerous for young women around the world to adhere to.”

    Do you think Olivia Jordan’s nude scenes push the boundary too far as Miss USA 2015?

    Source:, July 22, 2015

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         FOR THE SECOND YEAR in a row, Baton Rouge, the capital city of Louisiana, hosted the Miss USA 2015 pageant. Miss Oklahoma USA Olivia Jordan, 26, a stunning 5'11" blonde from Tulsa was crowned as the 64th Miss USA, making her the first woman from her state to win the coveted crown. Jordan will now represent the United States in the next edition of Miss Universe pageant whose date and venue are yet to be confirmed. Jordan is a pageant veteran; she had previously represented the country in Miss World 2013 pageant in Bali, Indonesia where she placed in the top 20. She had also competed in Miss California USA 2013 where she placed first runner-up. 

         The lucky contestants who made made the Top 15 list were:

    1. Miss Texas USA Ylianna Guerra  
    2. Miss Maryland USA Mamé Adjei
    3. Miss Arizona USA Maureen Montagne
    4. Miss Michigan USA Rashontae Wawrzyniak
    5. Miss Virginia USA Laura Puleo
    6. Miss Rhode Island USA Anea Garcia
    7. Miss Kentucky USA Katie George
    8. Miss Hawaii USA Emma Wo
    9. Miss New York USA Thatiana Diaz
    10. Miss Illinois USA Renee Wronecki
    11. Miss Nevada USA Brittany McGowan
    12. Miss Oklahoma USA Olivia Jordan
    13. Miss Delaware USA Renee Bull
    14. Miss Louisiana USA Candice Bennatt
    15. Miss Alabama USA Madison Guthrie

         After competing in the swimsuit segment, five were eliminated: Arizona, Illinois, Kentucky, New York and Virginia. However, Kentucky passed to the next round thanks to an interactive audience voting to save one contestant. The eleven remaining contestants then competed in the evening gown segment to demonstrate their grace, poise and sense of style. These were my favorite gowns of the evening because they embody real sophistication (Hawaii, Delaware), sensual elegance (Nevada, Alabama), and bold glamour (Michigan, Maryland).

         Then the group was dwindled down to the top five: Nevada, Maryland, Rhode Island, Texas and Oklahoma. 

         The question portion of the competition consisted of two parts. First, each of the five finalist had to pick a plaque containing the name of a particular judge who asked them a unique question. Every year when I watch Miss USA, I always look forward to this segment because it is the most crucial part of the competition: a girl's answer could either make her or break her. All five questions revolved around current social and political issues. Here's how the finalists responded to their respective questions:

    Miss Oklahoma USA Olivia Jordan
    Q: "The Confederate flag, excessive force by police and same-sex marriage are all recent, hot-button issues in our country. What do you think will be the next that we need to tackle on a national level?" (asked by Brook Lee, Miss Universe 1997)

    A: "I think we still need to talk about race relations in this country. We have not solved this issue. We are still having problems and we keep hearing about new issues that are coming up. We really need to work on being an accepting society and being a society where every single person, no matter your race, no matter your gender, is given the same rights and privileges and opportunities."(Not only was Olivia's delivery smooth and persuasive, but the substance of her answer was on point.)

    Miss Texas USA Ylianna Guerra
    Q: "Last year, CEOs in the United States made around 300 times as much as the average worker salary. Should the government impose boundaries on salaries of executives?" (asked by Michelle McLean-Bailey, Miss Universe 1992)

    A: "That's a very good question. You know, I think that if you work hard enough, you can attain anything. This is the land of opportunity and CEOs -- I believe that they work hard enough for their money, so I believe that they should be able to attain whatever it is they are working for."(Ylianna has one of the most beautiful faces in the pageant and I think she should have won the Miss Photogenic award. Her response was a little shaky in the beginning, but she managed to hold her ground.)

    Miss Rhode Island USA Anea Garcia
    Q: "Recently, comedian Jerry Seinfeld spoke out against political correctness in our culture. Do you think political correctness is hurting or helping this country and why?" (asked by Tara Conner, Miss USA 2006)

    A: "That's a very good question. I think it'a balance of both. Definitely, we need  -- I'm sorry, please repeat the question." (Judge repeated the question.) "I think that it's a balance of both. We need the people to remind us, especially politicians, to remind us what to do right and when to do wrong." [the buzzer rings to indicate that time is up]  (Anea's response will go down in pageant history as one of the worst answers. There's no doubt that she did not understand what "political correctness" means, and her awkward answer was only compounded by her awkward walk in that poorly hemmed gown.)

    Miss Maryland USA Mame Adjei
    Q: "The United States has agreed to formally reopen its embassy in Cuba. Do you think this change will be a positive one for both countries?" (asked by Nana Meriweather, Miss USA 2012)

    A: "I think that it will be a positive trade. I think that it is an awesome thing to open our doors to all countries, all nations and to mend our relations with everyone. We should not be holding on to old grudges. We should be moving forward and accepting each other and loving one another and moving forward so that we can create better relations, better society, better govern -- govern our countries better that way."(Mamé nailed the question, but she stammered a little and she used some words more than once, which to me reflects limited vocabulary.)

    Miss Nevada USA Brittany McGowan
    Q: "What would you do to improve race relations in the U.S.? Please be specific." (asked by Crystle Stewart, Miss USA 2008)

    A: "What I would do to improve race relations in the U.S. is get the more races grouped together and be able to be with each other in a -- in a non -- I think what we need to do is bring -- we need to be more accepting of each other and we need to bring people together, and that's what we need to do. Thank you so much." (Ouch! Brittany's answer, though not as bad as Anea's, was just too painful to the ears. Oh, well... she looked radiant nevertheless and she was able to keep her composure.)

        Earlier during the week, Reelz had invited viewers to submit a final question with the hashtag #askMissUSA either on Facebook or Instagram. I submitted a question on my Instagram account, but as soon as co-host Todd Newton announced, "Here is your Facebook question," I immediately said to myself, "They lied about Instagram. Bastards! LOL!" Anyway, the final question picked from Facebook came from a viewer from South Carolina:
    "In the year 2020, a woman will appear on the $10 bill. Which American woman would you like to see on the first printing of the bill and why?"

    Oklahoma: "Well, I wish that Oprah was an eligible candidate because I would love to see Oprah on a bill. But there are some amazing women in American history. I think Harriet Tubman would be a beautiful example of where we have been, and how far we are coming and how far we still have to go. Thank you."(Again, Olivia's delivery was impeccable and persuasive. I am glad that she chose Harriet Tubman over Oprah, not because Oprah is less significant but because Harriet Tubman's name deserves historical perpetuity, considering that many of today's youth in America have never even heard of her.)

    Texas: "That's a very good question. On the bills that we have right now, they are all of presidents, and so I think we should just wait until the upcoming election. We have both a Republican and Democratic candidate running for president and I think we should just wait and see." (Huh? I was totally flummoxed by Ylianna's bizarre response. Either she knows little of American history, or she was seriously hoping that either Democrat Hillary Clinton or Republican Carly Fiorina would win the 2016 presidential election just so a woman would appear on the $10 bill in 2020. Bad answer.)

    Rhode Island: "I think that it's long overdue that we haven't had a woman on our dollar bill. Having gone to an all girls' school, I've realized that there are so many powerful women that can really be an example, and the woman I would choose would have to be Catherine McAuley. She's the founder of the Sisters of Mercy, and she founded our school because she really wanted to show the world that women are really, can really be empowering to the rest of the world and be an example and an advocate as well as an inspiration." (I don't think most viewers knew who Catherine McAuley was until Anea mentioned her name. Realistically speaking, a nun's face will never appear on paper currency because it would suggest that the government favors a particular religion, which would be against the First Amendment. Even though Anea's response this time was so much better than the first one, her choice was just not as popular as Harriet Tubman).

    Maryland: "Honestly, I would like to see Oprah, I think she's a great role model. She's a person that has transcended so many adversities. She's an example of someone that's been so steadfast in following her dreams, never letting go and always holding herself accountable to reaching her goals. That is someone I hold in high esteem and that I look up to, and I want to be just like that woman because of what she's gone through and what she's surpassed. No matter what you go through, you can do whatever you want, and that to me is inspiring." (Mamé's choice of Oprah was not surprising, considering that Oprah has indeed been a great role model for young women. But Oprah is still very much alive and we expect her to live beyond 2020, so in this regard she lacks historical significance.)

    Nevada: "I would love to see Rosa Parks on the $10 bill. That would be fantastic. As an African American woman, I feel connected to her and I'm here because of her, and it would be fantastic. I think it would be amazing to have Rosa Parks on the $10 bill, and I'd like to say that race relationships should be helped. It starts at home, so I think if we just continue to -- we need to bring respectfulness from home, it will solve it."(Rosa Parks was a very good choice, but unfortunately, Brittany's delivery came out a big choppy and unconvincing. Notice, too, that she tried unsuccessfully to transition this response to her first question about improving race relations.)

         Based on the delivery, poise and substance, I would rank Oklahoma as Miss USA 2015, followed by Maryland, Nevada, Rhode Island and Texas. It's odd because I didn't even have either Oklahoma or Texas on my Top 10 list, but they proved me wrong with their fine performance. This goes to show you that the judges saw more in these women on stage that we failed to see as mere spectators on our television screen.

         Compared to last year's which was virtually scandal-free (see my 2014 review), this year's pageant has been dragged into controversial politics after pageant owner Donald Trump, during his presidential announcement speech on June 13, criticized Mexico for sending criminals and rapists to the United States, in reference to the massive illegal immigration problem that has been plaguing the nation. Hispanic groups and their liberal allies quickly denounced Trump for his derogatory remarks regarding Mexicans and accused him of racism. This year would have been the first time for Univision to air Miss USA, but due to Trump's politically incorrect remarks the network cancelled its plan to air the pageant for the Spanish-speaking audience. The network also decided to boycott the next edition of Miss Universe. It snowballed from there as celebrities withdrew their support of the show. Colombian singer J. Balvin was the first entertainer to pull out. Puerto Rican actress-singer Roselyn Sánchez and Cristián de la Fuente of Chile were set to host the Univision broadcast of Miss USA, both announced on June 25th that they were pulling out of the pageant. When Univision announced it had pulled the plug on the pageants, NBC scrambled to distance itself from Trump, with whom it co-owns the Miss USA/Miss Universe pageants. Thomas Roberts and Cheryl Burke, who were supposed to co-host Miss USA for NBC, stepped down from their task. Jeannie Mai, who was last year's color commentator and backstage host, initially opted to stay in support of MUO and the delegates, but later changed her mind and pulled out as well. 

         With only two weeks to go before the finals, the pageant was left without a TV network, co-hosts, color commentator, and entertainers. Then a miracle happened. On July 2nd, Reelz, a relatively obscure and family-owned cable channel, announced that it has bought the rights to the pageant and that it would air the live show. The channel's CEO, Stan Hubbardsaid the decision to air the pageant "should not be construed as anything political" but as "an iconic television event" - a sentiment shared by many people especially by all 51 contestants. Pageant organizers quickly distanced themselves from the controversy and  moved forward for the July 12 event. "We're a little company that happens to have been caught between two behemoths," pageant president Paula Shugart told Entertainment Weekly. "The sash has been saved!" Miss Washington USA 2015 Kenzi Novell posted on Twitter after the distribution deal was announced. On its official website and Facebook page, Reelz proudly posted the graphic below:

         Overall, I enjoyed the show very much because it offered many memorable moments and refreshing changes, such as the absence of Jeannie Mai (thank God she pulled out!). In my last year's review, this is what I wrote about her: "Color commentator Jeannie Mai's comments absolutely brought nothing new or fresh that we avid pageant fans did not already know or expected. She's got to go, and should be replaced by someone who had actually competed in Miss USA and whose opinion truly matters to pageant followers." Well, what do you know? Jeannie did not return and someone who had competed before in Miss USA was hired as a co-host. And there are not enough words to describe Julie Alexandria's phenomenal stint as the new color commentator! I hope Julie becomes a permanent fixture! I love hearing her voice and she added a much needed class and elegance to the show.

      Kudos to Todd Newton and Alex Wehrley for preventing any dull moment from happening. Todd was a co-presenter at Miss Universe 2001 and Alex was Miss Wisconsin USA 2009. Together, they made a remarkable team!

         Pageant owner and real estate mogul Donald Trump had tweeted the day before that he would not be able to attend the show because he was campaigning in Phoenix, Arizona - even though he did not have any events scheduled that Sunday. But that's okay. No one missed him, except I who was counting on his presence just so he could further rebuke NBC and Univision for cancelling the broadcast of the pageant. But the Donald was wise enough to back off and to not take away the spotlight from the girls, though he kept himself busy by taking pot shots at his political rivals via Twitter. If he fails to win the Republican nomination, I'm sure he'll show up at the pageant next year - assuming that he remains as the co-owner. 

             The events leading to, during, and after the 2015 Miss USA pageant will certainly go down in history as some of the most indelible moments in pageant history. It was a moment of firsts. Oklahoma won its first Miss USA. Delaware made the semifinals for the first time. Two states tied for the Miss Congeniality award for the first time. In its 64-year history, it was the first time that the entire judging panel comprised of women, and it was also the first time that all the judges were former titleholders. And for the first time in the history of the pageant, the show was not broadcast by a major network but by a small, independent channel.


    by Rafa Delfin, 7/24/2015

    Photo credits: Miss Universe Organization

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  • 07/26/15--07:21: Miss Earth Reunion 2015

  • Jade Soune Seyne (center) was crowned Miss Earth Reunion 2015 on July 25 at Téat de Champ Fleuri in Saint-Denis. Her court includes Prescilia Pierret (Miss Air Réunion), Coralie Blanco (Miss Water Réunion) et Océane Cesar (Miss Fire Réunion). Seyne will now compete in 2015 Miss Earth pageant to be held in Vienna, Austria on December 5th. The current Miss Earth Jaime Herrell assisted in the coronation.


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  • 07/26/15--11:54: Miss World Fiji 2015

  • The new Miss World Fiji 2015 is Brittany Hazelman, 24, who was crowned July 26 at the Pearl South Pacific Resort in Pacific Harbour. Her runners-up are Varea Romanu and Anshuka Kumar.  Hazelman will now compete in Miss World 2015 to be held in Sanya, China on December 5th. 


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    Brittany Ann Payne, representing California, was crowned Miss Earth United States 2015 a the Radisson Hotel in Ontario, California on July 26. She was crowned by the 2014 titleholder Andrea Neu (Miss Earth Air 2014). Payne will now represent the U.S.A. in 2015 Miss Earth pageant to be held in Vienna, Austria on December 5th. Payne is a pageant veteran. She was 2nd runner-up in 2015 Miss California USA, 1st runner-up in Miss California United States 2013, 2nd runner-up in Ms. Racing Queen 2014 and also represented Bakersfield, California in 2013 Miss Hooters International. 

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