DAME Elizabeth Taylor has declined an invite to speak at pal Michael Jackson's memorial on Tuesday (07Jul09) because she doesn't want to be a part of the "whoopla" surrounding the event.
The 77-year-old movie star was rumoured to be attending the tribute with Barry Manilow, but she reveals she won't be going to the Staples Center event in Los Angeles.
In a message to fans via Twitter.com, the actress writes, "I've been asked to speak at the Staples Center. I cannot be part of the public whoopla. And I cannot guarantee that I would be coherent to say a word.
"I just don't believe that Michael would want me to share my grief with millions of others. How I feel is between us. Not a public event. I said I wouldn't go to the Staples Center and I certainly don't want to become a part of it. I love him too much."
Mariah Carey, Jennifer Hudson, Usher, Lionel Richie and Jackson's former 'girlfriend' Brooke Shields have been confirmed as participants in Tuesday's memorial.
The Staples Center tribute will also feature performances and speeches from basketball stars Kobe Bryant and Magic Johnson, Motown founder Berry Gordy, Martin Luther King III, John Mayer, Stevie Wonder and Smokey Robinson.