Merkel movie set for 2017 - but who will play her?

BERLIN (AFP) - A movie about the life of German Chancellor Angela Merkel looks set to hit the big screen in 2017 under plans announced by a TV production company on Tuesday.

But the big question of who will take on the role of the 60-year-old often described as the world's most powerful woman is not expected to be decided until later this year, said the company, AVE.

The international co-production - currently under the self-explanatory working title "Angela Merkel" - is due for release in two years' time, when Germany is next scheduled to hold general elections.

Merkel - a pastor's daughter and trained scientist who was raised in communist East Germany - became Germany's first female chancellor in November 2005.

At the height of the euro zone's debt woes, Merkel was vilified abroad and portrayed with a Hitler moustache for pushing austerity, but applauded at home for her prudent crisis management.

Polls now suggest she would win a fourth term as chancellor in 2017 if she runs again, which analysts currently expect her to do.

"She is charming and known worldwide. She causes quite a stir, she gets involved. It's time to film her life for a worldwide audience," AVE head Walid Nakschbandi said in a statement.

Behind the movie's screenplay is a journalist from Spiegel news weekly and author, Dirk Kurbjuweit.

"She's the most fascinating politician of our time," he said.

During the last election year in 2013, the notoriously guarded conservative leader revealed small glimpses into her private life - saying she finds "nice eyes" attractive in men and can easily handle an all-night summit without sleep.

News of the planned biopic appeared to have captured Twitter users' imaginations.

"This is one biopic I'd pay good euros to see: #Merkel the movie is in the works," read one Tweet.