Designer STUART WEITZMAN has withdrawn his annual million dollar OSCARS shoes because he feels it would be inappropriate for such an elaborate show of extravagance to hit the red carpet while so many people are around the world are suffering.

The top footwear guru usually creates a special pair of shoes for a lucky unknown to wear to the Academy Awards.

But the tsunami tragedy in Asia and refugee problems in Africa have made Weitzman rethink his Oscar night idea this year (05).

Company spokesman JANE WEITZMAN says, "Two years ago (03) we pulled the ruby shoes we were planning to show off at the Oscars out of respect for those fighting in Iraq.

"And we feel very strongly that, the way the world is now, there's no place for something like this, while there is so much suffering."

Weitzman also laughs off claims that Halle Berry was to wear the million dollar shoes to the Oscars on 27 February (05).

She adds, "They're CINDERELLA shoes. They're not for actresses as big as Halle Berry."

Meanwhile, Weitzman's shoes will be on display for Oscar nominees and guests at the Regent Beverly Wilshire hotel in Los Angeles from 21 February (05). Among his regular clients are Oscar nominee Kate Winslet.

10/02/2005 21:26