A woman whose photograph of a naked man in pursuit of a wild boar at a Berlin lakeside went viral has said she might take legal action against a company that has immortalised the spectacle for model railway enthusiasts.
Adele Landauer, an actor and charisma coach, told German media she resented the fact that others were making money from her snapshot, which went around the world last August.
The drama she captured played out after a wild boar, nicknamed Elsa by bathers, stole the man’s laptop in a bag that she was likely to have believed contained food. It has now been adapted into a plastic figurine set costing €13.99 (£11.90) and being sold by a model railway company as an embellishment for the landscape of a model railway set.
According to the manufacturer’s description, the so-called action set of a “naked man pursuing a wild boar who has stolen his bag – after a true event at the Berlin Teufelssee – including two air mattresses” – can contribute to the “realistic revival” of a model railway world. Missing from the set are the two piglets who followed their mother as she charged into a nearby wooded area, as well as the onlookers in various states of dress who watched the chase with startled glee.
Landauer told the tabloid Bild: “I had a huge amount of work due to that picture, but financially I got nothing from it. I don’t like the fact that others are now earning money from it without asking me.”
A spokesperson for Busch, the company behind the action set, has said “sales are going well”.
At the time the picture went viral, Landauer said that the man in question had given his permission for her to post the image on social media. His identity has never been made public, so it is unclear what he makes of his latest depiction.
Authorities’ subsequent announcement they would hunt the wild boar down triggered a protest by animal rights activists.
But almost a year on, it appears that Elsa is no more. Almost 2,000 wild boar in and around Berlin have been slaughtered amid attempts to stop the spread of African swine fever, and Elsa is believed to be among them.