Miss Universe 2015: Does Donald Trump own the pageant?

20 Jan 2016 | Author: | No comments yet »

Miss Universe contestants bare it all!.

LAS VEGAS – Donald Trump’s pageant days are over after his controversial comments about immigrants created a backlash, but the Miss Universe show must go on. When the first Miss Universe, Finland’s Armi Kuusela, won the crown in 1952, she donned authentic Karelian clothing — featuring a long-sleeve blouse and ankle-length skirt — as a nod to her Finnish heritage.A number of contestants have started posted selfies of themselves on Twitter using the hashtag #ConfidentlyBeautiful in which they appear without any make-up. The pageant that pits international beauties against one another returns to Las Vegas on Sunday to crown a winner on a new network, with a new Spanish-language broadcaster and a new pageant owner. In 1992, Miss Paraguay Pamela Zarza won the costume portion by wearing a seven-foot-wide feathered creation that blocked Miss Panama and Miss Peru from sight.

Reigning Miss Universe Paulina Vega, from Colombia, kick-started the craze, laying down the gauntlet with a challenge tweet to this year’s wannabes that read: “Every #MissUniverse is #ConfidentlyBeautiful. This year’s most notable looks include Miss Hungary dressed as a Rubik’s Cube (inventor Erno Rubik hails from the European nation), Miss Thailand’s “tuk tuk” — complete with working headlight — and Miss Australia, who sported a giant headdress made to resemble Dame Edna Everage’s trademark campy glasses. That led Spanish-language network Univision to pull out of the broadcast for what would have been the first of five years airing the pageants and NBC to cut business ties with Trump. The former star of the “Celebrity Apprentice” reality show sued both companies, settling with NBC in September, which included buying the network’s stake in the pageants. “It’s quite a telenovela to be honest with you,” said a laughing Manuel Abud, president and CEO of Azteca America, referring to the Spanish-language soap operas. Woke up fresh faced and ready to do this!” Others, like Miss Ireland Joanna Cooper, opted for a traditional ‘duck face’, while Lisa Drouillard (Miss Haiti) used the challenge as an opportunity to express her gratefulness, saying: “Today is the day #missuniverse #prelims, words cannot convey how thankful I am!” The models are following in the footsteps of countless celebrities to have stripped off the cosmetics in the name of honesty this year.

Stars such as Cindy Crawford, Cameron Diaz and Demi Lovato have all shared ‘no make-up’ selfies in recent months, with actress Salma Hayek jumping on the bandwagon just two days ago. Despite Trump disappearing from the business, Abud said his company didn’t jump right in, concerned there might still be lingering anti-Trump sentiment connected to the pageant.

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