Chancellor Merkel’s visit to Los Angeles

Angela Merkel and Mayor Villaraigosa
Chancellor Merkel and Mayor Villaraigosa at the Getty Center in L.A. on April 14, 2010.

It has been more than 18 years since a Chancellor of Germany added the film metropolis to the itinerary of any official visit. On Tuesday, April 13, 2010,  however, Chancellor Angela Merkel stopped for a visit in Los Angeles after attending the Nuclear Energy Summit in Washington DC.

Merkel was greeted by Governor Schwarzenegger and his wife Maria Shriver at Los Angeles International Airport on Tuesday evening. The next morning, on April 14, she met with Governor Schwarzenegger for breakfast at the Four Seasons Hotel in Beverly Hills . Afterwards, she and her delegation of 30 scientists, film experts, and economy strategists were greeted by Los Angeles’ Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa  who invited the Chancellor to Warner Brother Studios for a behind-the-scene visit. A physicist by profession, Chancellor Dr. Angela Merkel showed a lot of interest in the editing part and the generating of special effects of a movie.  The next stop on her agenda was a visit to the Getty Museum where she strolled through one of the exhibition halls and met with leaders of the film industry and VIPs of the German community in L.A. for a luncheon at the museum’s restaurant that offers a nice view over the hills of Bel Air and to the ocean. Speaking to the press, Chancellor Merkel remarked that she could easily imagine that Los Angeles must be a very pleasant place to live. She mentioned further that the cooperation between the two film producing hot spots Los Angeles and Berlin-Babelsberg have developed extremely well in the past and she expressed her hope that this trend would even grow stronger in future. Merkel looked very good in a red and black trouser-suit-combination and seemed to enjoy her visit to L.A. Since the museum had not been closed down to the public, she also chatted with some of the visitors, such as a group of school children. She explained to them that she was the Chancellor of Germany and asked if they knew where Germany was and the name of the German capital. Mayor Villaraigosa flashed a proud smile when one of the students answered “Berlin.”

Visitors were in for a few other celebrity sightings that day.  Supermodel and TV host Heidi Klum with her husband Seal, for example, arrived for the luncheon. According to her publicist, Klum had never met Chancellor Merkel before and was very much looking forward to meeting her. Klum who was dressed in a very conservative black-and-white outfit even seemed a bit nervous. Other celebrities included Thomas Gottschalk, film producers Arthur Cohn, Uli Edel and Michael Ohoven, TV star Eric Braeden , German actress Desirée Nosbusch, and director Achim Freyer.

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Other reports about the visit of Chancellor Angela Merkel to the US in April 2010:

News from the Germany Information Center in Washington D.C.:

Chancellor Merkel at the Nuclear Energy Summit

Chancellor Merkel and President Obama at the Nuclear Energy Summit

Chancellor Merkel Visits Hollywood

Chancellor Merkel Visits Northern California

Several articles on Spiegel-Online

Official statement of Chancellor Angela Merkel on her trip to the US in April 2010