Lisa Azuelos and Kamir Aïnouz are preparing a biopic about music icon Dalida.

Nadia Fares will play the singer, who committed suicide in 1987 after selling more than 125m records worldwide.

The movie will show the rich and tormented life of Yolanda Gigliotti, born in Cairo to an Italian immigrant family, who became Miss Egypt in 1954 before heading to Paris, where she became Dalida and gained celebrity in the 1960s, singing in French, Spanish and German.

The film will be produced by Les Productions Martal (Steven Chasman), Pathé (Jérôme Seydoux, Romain Le Grand and Florian Genetet-Morel), and Bethsabée Mucho (Lisa Azuelos and Julien Madon), with the involvement of Orlando, Dalida’s brother and agent. Pathe will handle distribution.

Lisa Azuelos and Kamir Aïnouz previously worked together on the US remake of family comedy LOL.

Dalida’s biopic — as yet untitled — is scheduled to be shot in 2012 in France, Italy and Egypt. A release is planned for 2013 for the project, which has an estimated budget of €12m-€15m.

Producer Julien Madon said: “this biopic is aimed to interest fans, of course, but also all the people that never knew her.”

Dalida’s story was previously told in a French-Italian TV miniseries in 2005, as well as in a Quebecois musical.