- Image of German Chancellor chatting with a relaxed-looking U.S. president has entertained internet pranksters
- They manipulated the photograph to make it look as if Merkel was a character in 1965 film The Sound of Music
- Other shots were altered to make it look as if Obama was taking a bath or relaxing in a presidential hot tub
- Meme-makers also edited the photograph to make it look as if the world leaders were starring in Game of Thrones
By JOHN HALL FOR MAILONLINE
A photograph of Angela Merkel engaged in an expressive conversation with Barack Obama in front of a stunning Alpine backdrop has gone viral and inspired dozens of new memes online.
The German Chancellor was pictured with her arms outstretched as she engaged the relaxed looking U.S. president outside Elmau castle in the Bavariam village Kruen yesterday afternoon, ahead of a meeting of the G7 industrial nations.
The image immediately drew comparisons with Julie Andrews’ character in The Sound of Music, but internet users have since expanded on the idea, digitally altering the image to make the pair look as if they are in a hot tub and even posing with Tom Hanks’ character from the film Forrest Gump.
The hills are alive: The photograph of the German Chancellor with her arms outstretched has inspired dozens of memes, such as this one comparing her pose to one seen in the film The Sound of Music
Chilled out: This photograph was manipulated to make it look as if Merkel and Obama were sharing a hot tub stamped with the famous Seal of the President of the United States. Former American leader George W Bush is also seen in the image
Internet users have have gone to town with the image, even making it look like a scene from Tom Hanks’ hit 1994 film Forrest Gump
Twitter pranksters jumped on the opportunity to mock the world leaders, using the candid photograph as a canvas on which to place unrelated movie characters, incongruous props and hilarious captions or phrases.
Most of the images take advantage of the juxtaposition between Merkel’s stern expression and demonstrative gestures and Obama’s incredibly relaxed pose – which sees him casually sitting on a bench with his arms outstretched.
The stunning Bavarian backdrop isn’t overlooked either, with the fluffy white clouds engulfing the mountains inspiring comparisons with the setting of the 1965 musical The Sound of Music, in which Julie Andrews’ character Maria strikes a similar pose to Merkel as she skips through the Alpine grass.
More creative memes included editing the setting of the photograph to make it look as if Merkel and Obama were characters from the hit TV series Game of Thrones, or the 2006 American fantasy war film 300.
Others mocked Obama’s relaxed pose by Photoshopping the image to make it look as if he was relaxing in the bath or a hot tub stamped with the famous Seal of the President of the United States, while former American leader George W Bush washes Merkel’s back.
There were another set of shots that were more straightforward, either suggesting that Merkel was trying to hug the U.S. president or was otherwise simply telling him: One day, son, all of this will be yours’.
Taking it easy: Most of the images take advantage of the juxtaposition between Merkel’s stern expression and demonstrative gestures and Obama’s incredibly relaxed pose – which sees him casually sitting on a bench with his arms outstretched
Cuddles: There were another set of shots that were more straightforward, suggesting that Merkel was trying to hug the U.S. president
More creative meme-makers edited the setting to make it look as if Merkel and Obama were characters from the hit TV series Game of Thrones
The memes came as the leaders of the world’s major industrial democracies resolved to wean their energy-hungry economies off carbon fuels, marking a major step in the battle against global warming that raises the chances of a U.N. climate deal later this year.
The Group of Seven’s energy pledge capped a successful summit for host Merkel, who revived her credentials as a ‘climate chancellor’ and strengthened Germany’s friendship with the United States at the meeting in a Bavarian resort.
Ties between the Cold War allies have been strained in the last couple of years by spying rows but Merkel appeared to put that behind her on welcoming Obama, who declared their countries were ‘inseparable allies.’
Meeting in the picturesque Schloss Elmau at the foot of Germany’s highest mountain, the Zugspitze, the G7 leaders pressed Greece to accept painful economic reforms to resolve its debt crisis and struck a firm tone on Russia’s role in Ukraine.
They agreed that existing sanctions against Russia would remain in place until Moscow and Russian-backed rebels in eastern Ukraine fully respect a ceasefire negotiated in Minsk in February, and said they could escalate sanctions if needed.
This meme suggests Merkel was simply telling the American president that he would one day own the Bavarian mountain-scape before him
Chaos: This photograph was manipulated to make it look as if Barack Obama was being berated by Merkel for destroying the planet
On climate change, the G7 leaders pledged in a communique after their two-day meeting to develop long-term low-carbon strategies and abandon fossil fuels by the end of the century.
‘We commit to doing our part to achieve a low-carbon global economy in the long-term, including developing and deploying innovative technologies striving for a transformation of the energy sectors by 2050,’ the communique read.
The leaders invited other countries to join them in their drive, saying they would accelerate access to renewable energy in Africa and intensify their support for vulnerable countries’ own efforts to manage climate change.
The summit revitalised Merkel’s green credentials, after concern among diplomats and environmental campaigners that Japan and Canada might torpedo her efforts.
The G7 stopped short of agreeing any immediate collective targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, which the Europeans had pressed their partners in the club to embrace.
But they said a U.N. climate conference later this year should reach a deal with legal force, including through binding rules, to combat climate change.
Power: This meme was digitally edited to make it appear as if Merkel and Obama were characters in the 2006 American fantasy war film 300.
This lighthearted meme pokes fun at Americans for not following football – a sport Merkel regularly watches and is known to enjoy
The picture that inspired a thousand memes: This is the original photograph of Merkel and Obama talking in the Bavarian countryside
Green lobby groups – routinely critical of the advanced economies’ record on climate change – welcomed the thrust of the summit commitments.
‘Merkel’s G7 says ‘Auf Wiedersehen’ [goodbye] to fossil fuels,’ global activist network Avaaz declared in a statement.
‘Elmau delivered’, enthused environmental pressure group Greenpeace, adding that ‘the vision of a 100 percent renewable energy future is starting to take shape.’
The G7 leaders supported a reduction in global greenhouse gas emissions within a range recommended by the United Nations climate change panel, and backed a global target for limiting the rise in average global temperatures to 2C (3.6Ft) compared with pre-industrial levels.
Their accord helps set up the U.N. Paris conference, at which some 200 countries will try to reach agreement on limiting the rise in global temperatures to 2C and seal a new worldwide agreement to curb greenhouse gas emissions.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/