When diminutive French leader Nicolas Sarkozy conducted a talk at a factory he was flanked by workers no taller than him - leading to accusations of a set-up.
At 5ft 5in (165cm) Nicolas Sarkozy is merely an 2.5ins shorter than the average French male, though his height is often talked about. Now aides to the French president are accused of searching for only short individuals to make their boss appear taller.
Using a visit to a motor technology workshop in Normandy, 20 of the shortest workers were picked out to share a stage with Mr Sarkozy. One told Belgian TV she had been chosen simply because her small stature wouldn't result in the president look short.
But the Elysee Palace dismissed the allegation as "absurd and grotesque".
Yet Mr Sarkozy may not be the very first man to attempt to look taller. So do you know the common methods that short men and women utilize to further improve their height?
1. Use shoe lifts. Needless to say you don't need to be short to make use of height increase insoles. Sir Cliff Richard admitted using height increase insole to further improve his 5ft 10in (178cm) frame during performance, to match his tall dancers. And Sir Mick Jagger, who stands shoulder to shoulder with Sir Cliff on height, if not sexual politics, has used elevated Nike trainers on the red carpet to turn out to be nearer to his 6ft 2in (188cm) girlfriend.
2. Try a footstool. Mr Sarkozy's people may be rebuffing claims that he surrounds himself with shorter individuals, but there was no denying the president's use of a footstool at the D-Day anniversary this season. Speaking from the same lectern as Prime Minister Gordon Brown (5ft 11ins) and President Barack Obama (6ft 1in), he stood on a box to give his speech.
3. Other than height increase insoles, you may use increase shoes, for a extra beneficial rise. It's not the kind of boots that comes in a High Street shoe shop, but there are a lot of options available on the web, giving a height increase of anywhere between two and five inches. Advertising commentator Vince Graff, who is "5ft 2-and-a-bit inches", tested out them for a night out, getting a four-inch boost. Instead of showing a big, chunky heel, the footwear conceals the lift it provides inside the shoe - making for a "discreet" way to grow instantly taller. However the deception comes at a cost to the wearer - Graff likens the experience to wearing a pair of stilettos.
4. Fashion technique. Fashion is governed by rules and dressing to give the illusion of a few additional inches is no different. The important points consist of wearing one colour head-to-toe and avoiding turn-ups as they contain the outcome of shortening the length of the leg, reported by the Style Directions internet site. On top of that, try well-fitted apparel as poor fitting ones can emphasise width which often reduces the perception of height.
5. Find an individual who is willing to compromise. Love is a two-way street, which presumably explains why Rod Stewart's partner Penny Lancaster, 6ft 1in, reportedly steps off the kerb for publicity and also paparazzi photos shots, therefore she doesn't tower over her husband, who is 5ft 8ins.
6. Understand your limitation when choosing a partner. "When you're a teenager, you learn quite quickly that if you're 5ft 2ins you can't date a woman more than 5ft 6, " says Mr Graff. "Even if you don't think it looks ridiculous, passers-by do. "
7. Clever editing. Pedestals are likely to be deployed in Hollywood, especially for actors who have the looks even when they do not have a excellent stature. As an example, within Top Gun, viewers remain unaware that Tom Cruise is a few inches shorter than co-star Kelly McGillis, thanks to brilliant camera work.