Author: Bernd Jacobs, Michael Kloft
It is her toughest defeat to date: the nomination of Joachim Gauck as candidate for the office of German President by the Liberals, Social Democrats and Greens has brought Angela Merkel to her knees. Now that her own two candidates – Köhler in 2010 and now Christian Wulff - have been forced to resign, Merkel has finally relented.
This is not untypical for the 58 year old, who, in her almost seven years as Chancellor, has steered the fate of the Federal Republic, both as the first woman to hold the office and the first person from the former East.
On the one hand, she comes across as assertive and highly determined, insisting on Germany’s leading role in saving the Euro. Yet at the same time, she is regularly accused of indecisiveness and weak leadership.
Who is this woman, who first spoke out against the GDR when the regime was on its last legs?
Ever reluctant to speak about her background, an interview, given a couple of years ago to SPIEGEL TV, is one of the rare opportunities to learn more about Angela Merkel the person, and her long path to the top of the political world.
The never-before-aired interview forms the basis for this documentary, which shows the many stages on Merkel’s route to political power:
From her childhood as pastor’s daughter from Uckermark to East German physicist, from apolitical scientist to Deputy Spokesperson for the GRD’s final government, from minister in Helmut Kohl’s cabinet to becoming the first female Chancellor in German history.
year of production: 2012