- Miss Universe 2004
Miss Universe 2004 Date June 1, 2004 Presenters Billy Bush and Daisy Fuentes Venue Centro de Convenciones CEMEXPO, Quito, Ecuador Broadcaster NBC Entrants 80 Placements 15 Debuts Ethiopia, Georgia, Vietnam Withdraws Albania, Argentina, Mauritius, Namibia, New Zealand Returns Austria, Botswana, Chile, Denmark, Ghana, Kenya, Lebanon, Paraguay, St. Vincent & the Grenadines, Turks & Caicos, Uruguay Winner Jennifer Hawkins
Congeniality Laia Manetti
Best National Costume Jessica Rodríguez
Photogenic Alba Reyes
Delegates arrived in Quito from May 12, 2004 and participated in three weeks of events, rehearsals and preliminary competitions prior to the final televised competition. Events took place in Quito, Guayaquil, Cuenca, Riobamba and Latacunga.
At the conclusion of the final competition, Australian model Jennifer Hawkins was crowned Miss Universe 2004, by outgoing titleholder Amelia Vega of the Dominican Republic. Hawkins was the first Australian titleholder since Kerry Anne Wells won in 1972. She was also the first blonde Miss Universe since Angela Visser in 1989.
Quito, Ecuador was announced as host city of the pageant on 19 August 2003. The city paid $5 million for the right to host the event, although it anticipated recouping this through visitors and promotion of the country during the televised competition.
In March Ecuador's foreign trade minister was forced to reject rumours that the pageant was at risk of being moved to China, and he urged Ecuadoreans to back the pageant. As an added incentive for tourists, Ecuador American Airlines, official airline sponsor of the pageant, offered 5% off airfares to Quito for travel to the pageant, as well as 10% off for those who booked a month in advance. The attempted use of the pageant to promote Ecuador threatened to be derailed just prior to the telecast, when a corruption scandal led to growing demands for the removal of President Lucio Gutierrez in the politically unstable country.
Prior to the arrival of delegates in early May, officials in Quito attempted to renovate areas where they would be visiting, which involved temporarily removing beggars and homeless people from certain areas of the city. Similar action was taken in Bangkok, Thailand prior to Miss Universe 1992 and in Manila, Philippines prior to Miss Universe 1994. The event was protested by native Indian activists and environmentalists who accused the government of concealing the nations poverty whilst the pageant was being hosted.
The delegates, judges, media and tourists were heavily protected by a security detail involving over 5000 police officers. On 16 May, just hours before delegates were expected to participate in a parade in Cuenca, a pamphlet bomb was deactivated by police. Although it was protesting the economic policies of the Ecuadorean government, police suspected that the bomb, found just six blocks from the parade route, was timed specifically to coincide with the event.
Final results Contestant Miss Universe 2004 1st runner-up 2nd runner-up
- Puerto Rico - Alba Reyes
- Paraguay - Yanina González
- Trinidad & Tobago - Danielle Jones
Top 10 Top 15
Award Contestant Best National Costume Miss Congeniality
- Italy - Laia Manetti
- Puerto Rico - Alba Reyes
The judging panel for the final competition included:
- Bo Derek - Film actress.
- Bill Rancic - Winner of the first season of The Apprentice.
- Katie Pritz - Today Show's "You Be The Judge" contest winner.
- Wendy Fitzwilliam - Miss Universe 1998.
- Elsa Benitez - International supermodel.
- Jon Tutolo - President of Trump Model Management.
- Anne Martin - Vice President of Global Cosmetics and Marketing of Procter & Gamble Cosmetics.
- Monique Menniken - Supermodel.
- Petra Nemcova - Sports Illustrated supermodel.
- Jefferson Pérez - 1996 Ecuadorian Olympic Gold Medalist.
- Emilio Estefan - Music producer and entertainer.
Note: Kwame Jackson, runner-up on the first season of The Apprentice, was initially chosen as a judge, but he was disqualified because he inadvertently visited the hotel where the delegates were staying and interacted with some of the contestants.
- Angola - Telma Sonhi
- Antigua & Barbuda - Ann-Marie Brown
- Aruba - Zizi Lee
- Australia - Jennifer Hawkins
- Austria - Daniela Strigl
- Bahamas - Raquel Horton
- Barbados - Cindy Baston
- Belgium - Lindsy Dehollander
- Belize - Leilah Pandy
- Bolivia - Gabriela Oviedo
- Botswana - Icho Keolotswe
- Brazil - Fabiane Niclotti
- Bulgaria - Ivelina Petrova
- Canada - Venessa Fisher
- Cayman Islands - Stacey-Ann Kelly
- Chile - Gabriela Barros
- China - Zhang Meng
- Colombia - Catherine Daza
- Costa Rica - Nancy Soto
- Croatia - Marijana Rupčić
- Curaçao - Angeline da Silva
- Cyprus - Nayia Iacovidou
- Czech Republic - Lucie Váchová
- Denmark - Tina Christensen
- Dominican Republic - Larissa Fiallo
- Ecuador - Susana Rivadeneira
- Egypt - Heba El-Sisy
- El Salvador - Gabriela Mejía
- Estonia - Sirle Kalma
- Ethiopia - Ferehyiwot Abebe
- Finland - Mira Salo
- France - Lætitia Bléger
- Georgia - Nino Murtazashvilli
- Germany - Shermine Shahrivar
- Ghana - Minaye Donkor
- Greece - Valia Kakouti
- Guatemala - Marva Weatherborn
- Guyana - Odessa Phillips
- Hungary - Blanka Bakos
- India - Tanushree Dutta
- Ireland - Cathriona Duignam
- Israel - Gal Gadot
- Italy - Laia Manetti
- Jamaica - Christine Straw
- Japan - Eri Machimoto
- Kenya - Anita Maina
- Korea - Choi Yun-yong
- Lebanon - Marie-José Hnein
- Malaysia - Andrea Fonseka
- Mexico - Rosalva Luna
- Netherlands - Lindsay Grace Pronk
- Nicaragua - Marifely Argüello
- Nigeria - Anita Uwagbale
- Norway - Kathrine Sørland
- Panama - Jessica Rodríguez
- Paraguay - Yanina González
- Peru - Liesel Holler
- Philippines - Maricar Balagtas
- Poland - Paulina Panek
- Puerto Rico - Alba Reyes
- Russia - Ksenia Kustova
- Serbia & Montenegro - Dragana Dujović
- Singapore - Sandy Chua
- Slovakia - Zuzana Dvorska
- Slovenia - Sabina Remar
- South Africa - Joan Ramagoshi
- Spain - María Jesús Ruiz
- St. Vincent & Grenadines - Laferne Fraser
- Sweden - Katarina Wigander
- Switzerland - Bianca Sissing
- Chinese Taipei - Janie Yu-Chen Hsieh
- Thailand - Morakot Aimee Kittisara
- Trinidad & Tobago - Danielle Jones
- Turkey - Fatos Segmen
- Turks & Caicos - Shamara Ariza
- Ukraine - Oleksandra Nikolayenko
- Uruguay - Nicole Dupont
- USA - Shandi Finnessey
- Venezuela - Ana Karina Áñez
- Vietnam - Hoàng Khánh Ngọc
- Although no countries placed for the first time, a number made the semi-finals for the first time in a number of years. Costa Rica last placed in 1954, the host country Ecuador last placed in 1981. Other nations who placed after many years without success were: Norway and Chile (1990), Paraguay (1991), Australia (1993), Switzerland (1994) and Mexico and Jamaica (1999). Colombia last placed in 2000, Puerto Rico in 2001, India in 2002.
- Countries that also made the cut the previous year were USA, Trinidad & Tobago, and Angola.
- Shandi Finnessey's first runner-up placement was the highest placement of the USA since Brooke Lee won the country's seventh Miss Universe crown.
- Yanina Gonzalez's placement was also only the third time in the forty-two years Paraguay has participated that their delegate made the cut.
- Ana Karina Añez, failed to place, breaking Venezuela's 21-year streak of placements from 1983 to 2003. This had included consecutive top six placements since 1991.
- Italy won its first Miss Congeniality award
- Puerto Rico won its 5th Miss Photogenic award, 4th consecutive win via internet voting since 2001.
- Panama won its second award in the category of Best National Costume.
- Some delegates had previously competed in Miss World, including three women who were runners-up at that pageant:
- Christine Straw (Jamaica) placed fifth runner-up at Miss World 1998 as well as making the top ten at Miss Universe.
- Zizi Lee of Aruba, was first runner-up at Miss World 2001 and Oleksandra Nikolayenko (Ukraine) was a semi-finalist. Both were unplaced at Miss Universe
- Kathrine Sørland (Norway) was third runner-up at Miss World 2002, as well as a semi-finalist at Miss Universe. Odessa Philipps (Guyana) also competed at Miss World 2002.
- Bianca Sissing (Switzerland), top fifteen at Miss Universe, was also a semi-finalist at Miss World 2003. Another semi-finalist in that pageant was Marie Jose Hnein (Lebanon), who did not place at Miss Universe. Anne-Marie Browne (Antigua & Barbuda), Angeline da Silva (Curaçao) and Lucie Vachova (Czech Republic) also competed at Miss World 2003 but were unplaced in both competitions.
- Heba El-Sisy (Egypt) later competed at Miss World 2004, along with Stacy Anne Kelly (Cayman Islands), Anita Uwagbale (Nigeria), and Joan Ramagoshi (South Africa). Nigeria placed as semi-finalist in Miss World 2004.
- Yanina Gonzalez (Paraguay), placed third runner-up at both Miss Universe and Miss Earth 2004. Marifely Arguello (Nicaragua) and Liesel Holler (Peru) were unplaced at Miss Universe but made the semi-finals at Miss Earth 2004.Marifely Arguello from Nicaragua would also win Miss Expo World later that year. Ferehyiwot Abebe (Ethiopia) and Silvia Gabriela Mejia (El Salvador) were unplaced at both pageants.
- Oleksandra Nikolayenko (Ukraine) was invited to judge the Miss Universe 2005 finals in Thailand and later became director of the Miss Ukraine Universe pageant.
- Andrea Fonseka (Malaysia) is the daughter of Josephine Lena Wong Jaw Leng, who was Miss Universe Malaysia 1970 and competed at Miss Universe 1970 and placed Top 15,Top 10 Best in Swimming Suit & won Expo Queen award.
- Andrea Fonseka (Malaysia) later take over the Miss Universe Malaysia franchise and become director since 2010.
- Zita Galgociova was initially chosen to represent Slovakia, but she was replaced with her first runner-up Zuzana Dvorska because she was under the minimum age.
- Maricar Balagtas (Philippines) was Miss Globe International 2001 winner.
- Georgia , Ethiopia and Vietnam competed for the first time.
- Nations who returned from the pageant after years of absence were St Vincent & the Grenadines (last competed in 1991), Austria (1999), Denmark (2000), Botswana (2001), Turks & Caicos (2001), Lebanon (2001), Paraguay (2001), Chile (2002), Ghana (2002), Kenya (2002), and Uruguay (2002).
- Countries that sent delegates to Miss Universe 2003, but did not send one to the 2004 pageant were: Albania, Argentina, Mauritius, Namibia, and New Zealand.
These are some of the networks outside the United States (telecasted on NBC and Telemundo) that showed the 2004 Miss Universe pageant live (or recorded earlier) in their respective countries and territories:
- ^ "Ecuador assigns 8,500 police to safeguard Miss Universe pageant". Associated Press. 2004-05-14.
- ^ "Access Hollywood's Billy Bush and Model Daisy Fuentes to Co-Host the 53rd Annual MISS UNIVERSE(R) Pageant Live on NBC Gloria Estefan, the World's Most Celebrated Latin Artist, to Perform" (Press release). Miss Universe Organization. 2004-05-12.
- ^ "Australian model becomes Miss Universe 2004". Agence France Press. 2004-06-01.
- ^ "Ecuador picked to host 2004 Miss Universe pageant". Reuters News. 2003-08-19.
- ^ "Minister scolds Ecuadoreans for not being excited about Miss Universe". Associated Press. 2004-03-23.
- ^ "Enjoy the sights and sounds of the Miss Universe pageant in Ecuador thanks to discounts offered by American Airlines Take Advantage of a Bonus Discount When Booking the Trip 30 Days in Advance" (Press release). American Airlines. 2004-04-07.
- ^ Hayes, Monty (2004-05-31). "Ecuador looks to Miss Universe pageant to improve image tainted by political crisis". Associated Press.
- ^ "Quito primps for Miss Universe pageant by clearing out beggars". EFE News Service. 2004-05-12.
- ^ Shenon, Philip (1991-08-25). "Thailand Evicting the Poor: Coming Events Spur Leaders to Level Slum". Los Angeles Daily News.
- ^ "Police roundup of Manila street children under probe". Straits Times. 1994-05-02.
- ^ "Activists say poor Ecuador no place for Miss Universe contest". EFE News Service. 2004-05-31.
- ^ "Ecuador to assign 5,250 police to safeguard Miss Universe pageant". Associated press. 2004-05-31.
- ^ "Police deactivate pamphlet bomb in Ecuador town hosting Miss Universe parade". Associated Press. 2004-05-16.
- ^ "U.S. Miss Universe judge disqualified for visiting contestants". EFE News Service. 2004-05-31.
- ^ "Miss Universe Slovakia Won by 17-Year-Old from Trnava". Tlacova Agentura Slovenskej Republiky. 2004-03-21.
- ^ "Miss Universe Ethiopia to Participate in Miss Universe Pageant". All Africa. 2004-04-20.
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