In “Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days,” which combines elements of both the third and fourth of the “Wimpy Kid” books, the good news is that school is out for the summer and Greg is looking forward to a vacation spent playing video games, hanging out with his best friend, Rowley, and working his way into the affections of the girl he has a crush on, Holly Hills. The bad news is that Greg Heffley being Greg Heffley, nothing is going to go as planned.
“At the start of the film Greg’s dad takes away all of his video game privileges and basically decides Greg should spend all his summer hanging out with him and doing outdoor stuff like camping and swimming,” explains Zachary Gordon.
Zachary’s Greg still plays off his friends, including Rowley, and troublemaker older brother Rodrick, but DIARY OF A WIMPY KID: DOG DAYS also sees Greg spending more time with his dad, Frank.
Robert Capron again brings his signature charm to the role of Rowley. “He walked in and he was Rowley,” Simpson remembers of Capron’s audition for the first picture. “He has a huge heart, is excited about life and the world, and has some of the same qualities that Rowley has.”
Devon Bostick returns as Greg’s older brother, Rodrick, who upon learning that Greg has been sneaking into the country club, wants to get in on the high-class action, as well. “It’s Greg’s nightmare,” says Jacobson. “Rodrick is loud and lazy and Greg is a little embarrassed by his brother in this movie.
Peyton List is back as Holly Hills, who had moved to town in the last movie and stole Greg’s heart. In DIARY OF A WIMPY KID: DOG DAYS, Holly and Greg have become friends, but he wants to take it to the next level – whatever that means for someone in middle school. “Peyton really glows,” says Simpson. “She’s a delight to have on set and it feels like any middle school boy would have a big crush on her.”
Also back are the oddball Fregley (Grayson Russell), a misfit among misfits, the deadpan, wise-cracking Chirag Gupta (Karan Brar); and Patty Farrell (Laine MacNeil), who is the biggest thorn in Greg’s side.
The close-knit cast and crew were thrilled to reunite. For the Wimpy Kid, himself, working on the film series has been nothing less than life changing. “This has been wonderful for me,” says Zachary Gordon. “It was so much fun, even though it was a lot of hard work. It was way better than just having a regular summer vacation!”
“Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days” opens August 15 in theaters from 20th Century Fox to be distributed by Warner Bros.