Hollywood star Ashton Kutcher hit shopping centres in a wheelchair to prepare for his intense new role in The Butterfly Effect.

The hunky actor plays a wheelchair-bound character who can travel back in time in the new drama.

He says, "I went to a shopping mall to feel what that was like in a wheelchair. I wore glasses and I put cotton in my mouth to change my face. I changed the voice a little too - less confident and less protected.

"I did a lot of psychology study and met with people who have disassociation disorder, which causes them to have these blackout traumatic memories.

"I also went around my house for a week without trying to use my hands and legs."

Kutcher admits he was far from impressed with people's reactions to his apparent disability, "Everybody kind of sees it, but tries not to stare. But you notice every one of them staring. It makes you feel like you don't belong and that you are different."

18/01/2004 00:12