Review: The Wimpy Kid Movie Diary
The Wimpy Kid Movie Diary: How Greg Heffley Went Hollywood
By Jeff Kinney
The Wimpy Kid Movie Diary aims squarely for its audience—fans of Jeff Kinney’s Diary of a Wimpy Kid and its sequels—and hits the sweet spot with a book that keeps some of the tone of the original while turning the subject around to the making of the Wimpy Kid movie.
The result is actually quite interesting. Kinney discusses all the aspects of making a movie, from choosing the cast and adapting the book to a screenplay to the nuts and bolts of building the scenery and feeding the crew. Everything is presented in simple, readable language and accompanied by illustrations from the book as well as plenty of photographs. This book seems to be even more generous with pictures than the original Wimpy Kid books, making it a quick read.
Despite its accessibility, the book is filled with interesting facts. I was particularly intrigued by the lengths to which the crew goes to create a new reality, down to making special posters to go on the walls and writing fake newspaper articles about the characters. Kinney also includes snippets of his own sketchbook, the director’s childhood diary, and the writings of the cast members.
Kinney assumes that the reader has already read the Wimpy Kid books, and his tone is familiar and chatty. However, he does explain each piece of the story that is touched on in this book. So while the natural audience is Wimpy Kid fans, the book is accessible to newcomers as well.
While it’s not great literature, The Wimpy Kid Movie Diary is well written and engaging, and the quality is far higher than the standard movie tie-in—perhaps because it’s based on a book. This is a great read for Wimpy Kid fans as well as movie fans who want to learn about what goes on behind the scenes.
This review is based on a review copy supplied by the publisher.
About Brigid Alverson
Brigid Alverson, the editor of the Good Comics for Kids blog, has been reading comics since she was 4. She has an MFA in printmaking and has worked as a book editor, a newspaper reporter, and assistant to the mayor of a small city. In addition to editing GC4K, she is a regular columnist for SLJ, a contributing editor at ICv2, an editor at Smash Pages, and a writer for Publishers Weekly. Brigid is married to a physicist and has two daughters. She was a judge for the 2012 Eisner Awards.
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