Rachel F. Elson
October 09, 2003 10:23 AM

First the movie career, then the governorship, then — natch — the biopic.

The A&E network already has a film in the works about the life of California’s new governor-elect, Arnold Schwarzenegger, the New York Post reports.

Network execs tell the paper that the unauthorized film, “See Arnold Run,” will compare his quest for the Mr. Olympia bodybuilding title 30 years ago with his race for the California governor’s seat — making the movie a cross between “Primary Colors” and “Pumping Iron.”

The film is slated to begin shooting next spring, with a planned airing next summer.

Although the network’s execs wouldn’t discuss casting, the Post says producers are approaching actors Willem Dafoe, Dennis Quaid and Viggo Mortensen, among others, to play the new Gov. Possible actresses for the role of Schwarzenegger’s wife, Maria Shriver, include Courteney Cox and Demi Moore.

The real Shriver is busy ironing out her own career plans, scheduling a meeting back at the office to determine how her job will change.

Shriver took a leave of absence during the campaign, and NBC News President Neal Shapiro has already confirmed that she’ll steer clear of any story relating to California politics. “She’s not going to report on California politics nor anything that a Governor Schwarzenegger might have to make a ruling on,” Shapiro told the Associated Press.

Nonetheless, he expressed confidence in her ability to stick with the job. “She’s an experienced and talented and hardworking journalist,” Shapiro said. “I see no reason why her career should be wiped away because her husband has a career in public life.”

Meanwhile, actors turned politicians from around the world offered their own advice to the pumped-up politician.

Ousted Philippine president Joseph Estrada, who had a successful film career in the 1960s before turning to politics — and who is now serving time in Manila on corruption charges — tells the Associated Press that Schwarzenegger needs to take his new responsibilities seriously.

“The pitfall is if you do not perform in the movies, it’s just acting,” Estrada said. “But in politics, it’s real life.”

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