Fox catches kudos wave

Surf's up at Teen Choice Awards

With awards like female hottie of the year and best summer song, along with life-size surfboards as trophies, it was obvious Fox wasn’t taking itself too seriously at Sunday’s inaugural Teen Choice Awards in Santa Monica. Fortunately, most of the honorees realized this as well.

“I’m actually a huge dork,” declared Jennifer Love Hewitt upon receiving her hottie award along with male hottie Freddie Prinze Jr.

The two-hour awards show, to be broadcast by Fox on Aug. 12, honored 34 sports, acting and music celebs voted on by teens throughout the country. The winners didn’t have to be teens — just the voters.

This was fortunate for 32-year-old Sandra Bullock, who took home the best hissy fit award for her bedroom tirade opposite Ben Affleck in “Forces of Nature.” “It’s not an easy job being angry because I’m a really nice person,” Bullock said.

The VIP after-party, in a tent adjacent Barker Hangar, carried through the surf theme with plenty of artificial palm trees, sand, corn dogs and myriad ice cream treats.

Ice skating Olympic gold medalist Tara Lipinski won the female athlete surfboard and said, while downing chips and ice cream, that she is starting to “feel more comfortable with the whole celebrity stuff here in Hollywood.” And she did seem right at home signing autographs and posing for photos with the autograph-book and camera-toting adolescents who got their chance to meet, greet and dance with their favorite celebs.

Other Teen Choice winners included: film drama, “Cruel Intentions”; summer movie, “Big Daddy”; TV actress, Sarah Michelle Gellar; TV drama,”Dawson’s Creek”; female artist, Brandy; music group, TLC; single, “Baby One More Time,” Britney Spears; album, ‘N Sync; summer song, “If You Had My Love” Jennifer Lopez.

Nearly everyone caught the lighthearted mood except perhaps pop phenomenon Spears, who seriously declared upon receiving her brightly painted surfboard trophy for singer of the year that this was truly “a precious gift.” Yeah, right. Surf’s up.

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