Back to IndieWire

“Was It The Best Film Of The Year? I Don’t Think So”: Paul Haggis Reflects On His Oscar Wins For ‘Crash’

"Was It The Best Film Of The Year? I Don’t Think So": Paul Haggis Reflects On His Oscar Wins For 'Crash'

Don Cheadle and Paul Haggis on the set of “Crash.”

It’s coming close to a decade since Paul Haggis‘ “Crash” took home three Oscars, including Best Original Screenplay and Best Picture, and many are still upset about it. The film competed against “Brokeback Mountain,” “Munich,” “Capote,” and “Good Night And Good Luck,” and many thought it wasn’t worthy of any Academy Award honors. To this day, it’s trotted out as an example of the industry voters getting it wrong, but Haggis has plowed ahead and returns this week behind the camera of David Simon‘s terrific miniseries “Show Me A Hero.”  But in the course of doing the interview rounds for the show, the inevitable question were asked about “Crash.”

“Was it the best film of the year? I don’t think so. There were great films that year. ‘Good Night and Good Luck’ —amazing film. ‘Capote’ —terrific film. Ang Lee’s ‘Brokeback Mountain’ —great film. And Spielberg’s ‘Munich.’ What a year. ‘Crash’ for some reason affected people. And you can’t judge these films like that. I’m very glad to have those Oscars. They’re lovely things. But you shouldn’t ask me what the best film of the year was, because I wouldn’t be voting for ‘Crash,’ only because I saw the artistry that was in the other films,” he told HitFix.

READ MORE: Review: Paul Haggis’ Embarrassing ‘Third Person’ Starring Liam Neeson, Mila Kunis, James Franco, Olivia Wilde & More 

“For some reason, that’s the film that touched people the most that year. So I guess that’s what they voted for, something that really touched them. And I’m very proud of the fact that ‘Crash’ does touch you,” he continued. “People still come up to me more than any of my films and say, ‘that film just changed my life.’ I’ve heard that dozens and dozens and dozens of times. So it did its job there. I knew it was the social experiment that I wanted, so I think it’s a really good social experiment. Is it a great film? I don’t know.”

And while it’s easy to say that “Paul Haggis wouldn’t even vote for his own film!” he’s being modest while standing by his work. And he’s right that the drama did affect many, certainly those within the Academy. However, these comments will likely inspire the Oscar debate all over again so share your views down below.

Sign Up: Stay on top of the latest breaking film and TV news! Sign up for our Email Newsletters here.

This Article is related to: News and tagged ,

Get The Latest IndieWire Alerts And Newsletters Delivered Directly To Your Inbox