NEW YORK (McClatchy-Tribune) — Devon Bostick wasn't content to torment co-star Zachary Gordon on-screen. Oh, no. Even when cameras weren't filming "Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules," Bostick — who plays older brother Rodrick to Gordon's "Wimpy Kid" — stayed in character.
"I got a bunch of Oreos and put toothpaste in them," Bostick confessed during a press tour in anticipation of the movie's nationwide launch today. Gordon innocently took one.
The Oreo caper was angelic compared to the torment suffered by Gordon's character, seventh-grader Greg Heffley, in the flick itself. High schooler Rodrick locks his younger brother in the basement and videotapes him running through a retirement community in his tighty whiteys. Rodrick is a maniacal genius when it comes to tormenting Greg, Bostick said.
"The central conflict of the movie is the mother's desire to have the boys spend more time together, and the boys' desire to do anything but," said Jeff Kinney, author of the "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" books, upon which "Rodrick Rules" is based.
"Rodrick Rules" is a sequel to last year's "Diary of a Wimpy Kid." Groundwork is being laid for a third movie, Kinney said. "There's a practical limit to how many movies we can do with this cast because they are, of course, growing very quickly," Kinney said.
Kinney also is working on a sixth book, which will focus on winter. Some material will come from his own life: When his son turned 6, Kinney's wife told the other moms to give him books instead of toys. "A 6-year-old boy's worst nightmare at a birthday party is to get a pile of books," Kinney said. He'll incorporate that idea into Greg Heffley's birthday party. The idea will catch on with other moms in Greg's neighborhood, humiliating Greg.
Kinney has repeatedly said he isn't trying to moralize to kids, just make them laugh. But movies differ from books in that the audiences need a moral to feel satisfied, Kinney said.
This movie's? "Don't pick on your older brother because he will kill you," guessed Amaya Holland, 11, of Patchogue, N.Y., who attended the news conference as part of Newsday's "Kidsday" staff.
Nope, that's not it. It's this, Kinney said: "It might be hard to see it now, but one day you will get along with your siblings, and they might just be your best friends."