Artisan Entertainment has acquired life rights to the true story of 60s pop group The Shaggs with a view to making a film based on their brief rise to fame to be written and directed by Katherine Dieckmann.

A three-sister outfit, The Shaggs only produced one album Philosophy Of The World, but the film will focus on their father Austin Wiggin Jr and his crazed determination that they would become the next Beatles. The story was brought to Artisan's attention by vice president of acquisitions and production Rachel Cohen who will oversee the film's development and production. Artisan said that it will likely go into production in the first half of 2001.

Dieckmann has one film to her name - A Good Baby starring Henry Thomas which premiered at the 1999 Los Angeles Independent Film Festival. She also directed episodes of Nickelodeon's live action series The Adventures Of Pete And Pete and a host of music videos for artists including REM and Aimee Mann. Prior to a career in directing, Dieckmann was a journalist for The Village Voice.

' Last week, Artisan promoted Nicolas van Dyk to the newly created position of executive vice president of corporate development and chief strategic officer. He was previously senior vice president, corporate development and strategic planning.