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Gladys Knight ‘honored’ by mistaken identity with Dionne Warwick at U.S. Open

A photo of a woman smiling while looking to the left next to a photo of a woman smiling while looking to the right.
Dionne Warwick, left, and Gladys Knight, both seen in 2021.
(Chris Pizzello / Invision/AP; John Amis / AP)
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It seems the U.S. Open had a two-for-one deal for celebrity mixups.

Commentators seem to have mixed up the identities of legendary singers Dionne Warwick and Gladys Knight, who were both in the stands Wednesday for Serena Williams’ match against Anett Kontaveit. The mixup comes just days after “Orange Is the New Black” actor Laverne Cox was mistaken for Beyoncé at the annual tennis Grand Slam event.

“Got some more stars,” Chanda Rubin said as she was calling the match when the camera zoomed in on Warwick.

“Gladys Knight,” Mary Carillo said, then Rubin repeated the name as footage continued to linger on the “Walk On By” singer.

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Carillo is a longtime analyst for Tennis Channel and a former tennis pro. Rubin is a former Grand Slam winner who in recent years has served as a commentator for Tennis Channel.

Several Twitter users and broadcasts of the U.S. Open mistook actor Laverne Cox for musician Beyoncé cheering on Serena Williams from the stands.

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Like clockwork, people on social media quickly noticed the slip-up. One Twitter user called out the commentators for the “unacceptable” mistake, as another claimed that Rubin’s and Carillo’s comments were a “disgusting display of ignorance and bigotry.”

Twitter user @4BlackCulture wrote, “these media outlets gotta start doing their homework,” and attached a video of TV personality Gayle King telling late-night host Stephen Colbert to tell his colleagues that “all Black people do not look alike.”

Amid the backlash, Rubin attempted to clear the air. Responding to a critic on Twitter, she said the mistake could have been a result of the live production setup.

Complete coverage from the Los Angeles Times of what could be the final Grand Slam of Serena Williams’ prolific career at the 2022 U.S. Open.

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“Too bad I was initially looking at the court (where Auntie Gladys was in the stands) and not our program monitor that showed Ms. Dionne...mistake was immediately corrected,” she said on Wednesday.

On Thursday, she further defended her actions on Twitter, noting that she was “mid-sentence caught up watching this historic match & was late seeing the program.”

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Warwick and Knight, however, didn’t have any hard feelings.

“Hi, I’m Gladys Knight...,” Warwick tweeted on Thursday. “And instead of taking that midnight train to Georgia, I won’t walk on by but will say a little prayer for you.”

“Dionne and I have been sisters for a long time and I hope she is as honored to be mistaken for me as I would be for her,” Knight tweeted Thursday. “I’m sure it was an honest mistake. It was a blessing to be in the house to see Serena’s greatness.”

Knight also retweeted Warwick’s cheeky tweets and shared a GIF of her onstage with Warwick.

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