Grrr! Tinseltown Titans

"Crash" did a hit-and-run on "Brokeback Mountain," and I, for one, can't tell you how happy I am about that.

And that's not because "Brokeback" stars Heath Ledger, Michelle Williams and Jake Gyllenhaal refused to stop on the Oscars red carpet for my live stream on Indeed, director Ang Lee was cordial to every member of the press, and didn't rush on by like some holier-than-thou Obliviot — like his cast did.

And not because everybody, and I mean everybody, from "Crash" was awesome, from writer/director Paul Haggis to writer/producer Bobby Moresco, producer Mark Harris and best supporting actor nominee Matt Dillon, who showed class amid the hectic atmosphere of the red carpet.

There was even an awkward moment when I didn't recognize Robert Moresco and I told him as much, but after I knew who he was, we spoke a good 10 minutes about the film. He appreciated my honesty.

"Crash" deserved its win.

The film shows how everybody views racism, and the irony is while each character believes they are victims, they themselves are racist when confronted with their own fears. It is truly a unique twist on the age-old topic that has been the subject of countless films.

"It's not like those movies where the 'good white people' go down South to fight the 'bad white people' to defend the 'poor black people,' Haggis told me. "That itself is racist," he said.

If you haven't seen "Crash," it's worth watching. There are zero judgements made, and I think that's why it is perhaps the best illustration of how racism exists, and a really good start in helping others understand each other.

The Academy did a good job with its best picture choice, as well as honoring Philip Seymour Hoffman and Reese Witherspoon, George Clooney and Rachel Weisz, and perhaps the biggest indicator that the Academy is not the stodgy old group that we've come to know, Three 6 Mafia won for best song "It's Hard Out Here for a Pimp" from "Hustle & Flow."

Click on the Oscars videos in the video player and check out Bill McCuddy and me interviewing these guys, who all had diamond jewelry ... on their teeth! But Jon Stewart was right when he said that the group contained the most interesting people at the show.

I credit Academy president Sid Ganis for much of this year's turnabout. Ganis produced the comedies "Big Daddy" and "Mr. Deeds," both starring Adam Sandler and both hugely successful, and this being Ganis' first Oscars, some of his sense of humor and sense of popular culture rubbed off on the broadcast.

As for being on the red carpet and behind the scenes at Tinseltown's biggest event, I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised, especially by George Clooney. Clooney doesn't cower from his views, but he also doesn't shove them in your face.

I found that a lot of Hollywood is changing, and it appears that the majority of Americans are being heard, and heard where it hurts the most — the box office.

That said, I also found that the truly iconic players out here are no longer shying away from challenging questions. I saw many joust with Bill McCuddy and Roger Friedman, and I had some moments as well with some filmmakers and celebrities that amounted to spirited debate, and not just one-sided brown-nosing from the celebrity press.

If you click on the Oscars section, you can see all the video culled from the FOX News team out in Hollywood, including Bill McCuddy, Roger Friedman and Lisa Bernhard — who looked stunning in her red carpet gown and was one of the highlights of our live stream.

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