The Oscars red carpet Godzilla claw shoes are one of Hazama's ‘dark fantasy’ designs.

Urawa, Japan — Kitsch sneakers that looked like Godzilla's claw caught notice on the Oscars red carpet. They were made by Ryosuke Matsui, who recently expressed his excitement at witnessing “Godzilla Minus One” director Takashi Yamazaki and his Shirogumi special-effects team walk the red carpet and win the visual effects Oscar in his shoes.

The director likes my sneakers. He calls them his uniform," Matsui told . Matsui, 35, runs Hazama, which means “the space-in-between” in Japanese, on his fashion career of less than a decade.

Hazama, a six-person company, sells girlie dresses with puffy skirts, Gothic themes, gradient kimonos and sweaters, coats with Andy Warhol-inspired designs, sofas and coffee tables, and crazy-heeled shoes. One pair's handgun trigger can be pulled without rounds, while another looks like it's stuck in an alien's blood-red teeth.

Matsui labels his themes “dark fantasy”. Witches, terrifying penguins, and iridescent polar bears inhabit his imagined world, where objects dissolve, faces become huge roses, and horrible hands grip your heel from underground. Matsui uses his brand's in-between areas to tell his hypnotic stories of the beginnings of time and “the people” he creates. His dream is to open a café or animate.

Of course, cool people look great in whatever they wear, but clothes can change the way you think, relate to others, and build your confidence,” he remarked. Contrary to his subdued appearance, Matsui is friendly. He wore a Hazama-designed sweatshirt with rainbow-tinged “aurora shark” fangs for studs, torn Yves Saint Laurent trousers, and Nike sneakers at his workplace on Tokyo's outskirts, surrounded by cartons and shipments of goods. He was working and didn't wear Godzilla sneakers.

The film's producer ordered the Godzilla sneakers for the October Japan premiere. They stole the spotlight at the recent Academy Awards without scripting it. The initial three designs—75,000 yen (about $500) red pumps for actress Minami Hamabe, 88,000 yen ($600) shoes for Yamazaki, and 105,500 yen ($700) boots with jagged scales for Godzilla co-star Ryunosuke Kamiki—took Matsui about a year to complete.

All few hundred in the initial batch sold out. Plans are ongoing to create more, possibly in gold to honor the Oscar statue. According to Matsui, interest is high. However, Godzilla sneaker fans should ultimately get one.

Matsui, a graduate of Keio University, might have easily become a successful “salaryman” like other young Japanese men. His loving family sent him to piano, swimming, and “juku” cram schools. He refused to lose his blond hair. He always respected Yohji Yamamoto, but he focused on color and fabric texture instead of black and austere lines.

Matsui said he enjoys working in Japan when questioned about his global goals. Creating apparel for Japanese rock band Bump of Chicken is his dream.

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