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A series of film adaptations of the beloved book series of the same name. The films, like the books, chronicle the misadventures of self proclaimed "wimpy" kid, Greg Heffley, as he navigates through the perils of middle school life, getting into all sorts of shenanigans along the way, along with his best friend Rowley and his Dysfunctional Family, which include his big brother, Rodrick, his parents, Susan and Frank, and his little brother Manny.

To date, the series consists of four live action films and two animated films:

Films — Live Action

  • Diary of a Wimpy Kid (2010)
  • Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules (2011)
  • Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days (2012; combines material from The Last Straw and Dog Days)
  • Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul (2017; all-new cast)

Films — Animated

A three minute 2D animated short in the style of the novels was also released in 2012 titled Class Clown, featuring the cast from the first 3 films. It is included in the Dog Days DVD/Blu-Ray as a bonus feature.

For tropes shared by both the films and books, go to the books' page.

The films provide examples of:

  • Adaptational Angst Upgrade: in the books, Greg's Jerkass behavior and his less-than-stellar relationship with most of his family and friends is Played for Laughs. In the movies, it's played more seriously and usually leads to a Plot-Mandated Friendship Failure which Greg has to resolve by the end.
  • Adaptational Attractiveness:
    • Rodrick. His film self plays up the Loveable Rogue angle, with a few gratuitous Shirtless Scenes for extra fanservice.
    • Bill Walter is quite a bit more handsome in the movie than he is in the book, where he's depicted as a hairy middle-aged man with a beer gut.
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    • A cuteness variant. In the books, Manny looks like, in the author's words, a "buck-toothed alligator." In the movies, Manny looks like an adorable toddler to better play up his Deliberately Cute Child shtick.
  • Adaptational Heroism: Rodrick. The movies have him start off as an antagonist like his book counterpart, but the second and third films add more depth to his character by having him bond with Greg, becoming more of a Cool Big Bro.
  • Adaptational Intelligence: In the book, Rodrick's opening prank is him telling Greg that he slept through the entire summer, and that he needs to get ready for his first day of school. Here, Rodrick tells Greg the week before the actual first day that he overslept and needs to rush to make it in time. Let's just say, Greg comes off as much, much less of an idiot for falling for the second one rather than the first.
  • Adaptational Jerkass:
    • Chirag. In the books, Greg plays a cruel prank on him for no reason, so Chirag's hostility towards Greg is very understandable. In the movies, he is extremely condescending and arrogant for no real reason.
    • Patty Farrell. In the books, Patty is at worst a Teacher's Pet and is only implied to be an Attention Whore — in fact, she's never directly interacted with Gregnote . In the movies, she's a nasty two-faced egomaniac who goes out of her way to antagonize Greg.
    • Heather Hills. In the books we don't learn much about her, but what we did learn never implied she was the snobby stuck-up bitch she is in the movies.
    • Stan Warren. In the books, he doesn't receive much characterization, but the film portrays him as an arrogant jerkass.
    • Susan Heffley. In the books, she a typical nagging mother, but it's implied that she cares for her family. In the first three movies, she's much nicer. She may do things that embarrass her boys, but that's because she just wants them to be happy and safe. She even scolds Frank for taking away Greg's video games in the third movie. However, in the Long Haul movie, she acts like a jerkass that only cares about getting to Meemaw's house and having control over her family's electronic devices. She even scolds Greg for almost waking up Manny because he nearly got hit by a car, instead of asking Greg if he was okay!
  • Adaptational Nationality: Abe Hall, the last kid to get the Cheese Touch in the book, becomes a German exchange student named Dieter Muller.
  • Adaptational Nice Guy: All of the Heffley's in the film series are nicer.
    • In the books, Greg is a huge Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist. The movies defy this, as while in the first film he is almost as much of a Jerkass as he is in the books, he gradually humbles out and by Rodrick Rules and Dog Days he is ultimately more sympathetic. It helps that many of his larger Kick the Dog moments are removed and others are made more justified by the circumstances. Because of this, Greg's rivals Patty and Chirag get the Adaptational Jerkass treatment in order to make Greg's actions more understandable.
    • Rodrick starts out pretty similar to his book counterpart, but he does go on to be a Cool Big Bro in the second and third movies.
    • Frank in the films makes more of an effort to be a good father to his sons, and while still strict on them, he's actually less so than Susan is.
    • Susan doesn't force the others to do the things only she wants like she tends to do in the books and she is more understanding of Greg's problems.
    • Even Manny is noticeably less of an Annoying Younger Sibling and never reaches the Troubling Unchildlike Behavior territory.
  • Adaptation Expansion:
    • The mother-son dance was added to the first movie mostly to bridge the gap between Greg and Rowley's initial falling-out and their fistfight on the playground. Greg tries to talk to Rowley again, but gets turned away, which is followed by Rowley and his mother performing a dance that gets widely cheered. Later at the playground, Rowley approaches him seemingly not angry... to ask Greg to give him back a game he left at his house once since Collin is sleeping over. Thanks to envy over Rowley's popularity combined with his own bitterness at being rejected, Greg isn't feeling too charitable.
    • In the books, at Rodrick's Wild Teen Party, Greg is locked in the basement all night until Rodrick needs help cleaning up from it. In the movie, Rodrick locks Greg in the basement, only for him to find a phone down there and call Rowley to come rescue him. When his parents call, Greg threatens to tell their parents about the secret party if Rodrick doesn't let him out, so Rodrick lets him out. Also in the book, their parents don't find out until they go through the camera and see a picture accidentally taken of the party. In the movie their mom finds out when a bathroom door they had to replace has no lock on it, which their father had questioned in the books.
    • The movies expand on the school that Greg goes to; it's called "Westmore Middle School" and has a hornet as its mascot.note 
    • While Rowley only appears briefly in a flashback in the book version of The Long Haul, the movie has him actually show up in person. Granted, his movie appearance isn't particularly long, but he does have more of a role in the film.
    • The characters in the movies are much more layered than how Greg portrays them in his diaries, making them seem more human and more like people you would most likely meet in real life.
  • A Day in the Limelight: Like the book it's named after, the Rodrick Rules focuses more on... well, Rodrick.
  • Alpha Bitch: Heather Hills in the third movie. She is pretty, rich and popular, and uses this as an excuse to treat everyone, including her sister, like dirt.
  • Amazingly Embarrassing Parents:
    • Subverted in the first movie. While at a school dance, Rowley dances with his mom. Greg expects it to go terribly... only to find out that she and Rowley are actually really good dancers, and everyone else likes it.
    • Played straight with Susan, whose worst moment is unintentionally causing Greg to suffer a massive Humiliation Conga in the roller rink intro of the second movie.
  • Art Evolution: In the first movie, the Imagine Spots done in the style of the books were done in cel-shaded CG. In the sequels, while they are still cel-shaded, the fact that they were computer-animated is less obvious.
  • Art Shift: Sometimes the perspective will change from live-action to animated versions of the book illustrations.
  • Bedmate Reveal: In the fourth film, Greg wakes up in the hotel, and sees Mr. Beardo sleeping next to him. He then freaks out and wakes everyone up.
  • Be Yourself: The moral of the hilariously Eighties-tastic movie Greg watches in one of his classes.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Coach Malone fends off the teenagers (and recognizes their leader as Pete Hosey in the process) from the first movie, as opposed to them leaving on their accord in the book.
  • Bird-Poop Gag: The second movie has Rowley's bird poop on Patty.
  • Bratty Food Demand: In the first movie, when Greg is imagining his adulthood with him as a pampered rich man, he demands that his servant replace his ice cream sundae as he wants the vanilla on the bottom and chocolate on the top.
  • Break the Haughty: The first film centers around Greg's desperate attempts to be popular all the while leaving Rowley on the short end of the stick. It takes nearly all of his attempts going awry and even Rowley ditching him for Greg to eventually redeem himself by taking the fall for him on eating the Cheese.
  • Bridal Carry: In the second movie, Greg's dad has to do this to him while in the middle of a roller-skating rink.
  • Canon Foreigner: The first movie features a character named Angie played by Chloë Grace Moretz who was not in any of the books. She mysteriously disappears in the sequels without explanation.
  • Comes Great Responsibility: Spoken by the Safety Patrol teacher in the first movie.
  • Creator Cameo: Jeff Kinney appeared in the second and third movies as Holly Hills' dad.
  • Did You Just Flip Off Cthulhu?: In the movie when Rodrick catches Greg and Rowley in his room, Rowley clings to Rodrick's leg to hold him off.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Patty holds a massive grudge over Greg because he insulted her in kindergarten. And the movie deals with the characters entering middle school.
  • Do Well, But Not Perfect: When Rodrick cleans the house after a party, he sprinkles some pretzel crumbs on the carpet so the house's condition isn't suspiciously good.
  • The Dreaded Toilet Duty: Downplayed. Greg accidentally pees on Rodrick because the latter startled the former while he was peeing. Susan, the boys' mother, makes Greg clean up, partly as punishment but mostly more of a "you made this mess, you clean it up" kind of deal.
  • Embarrassment Plot: A sub-plot in The Long Haul includes Greg becoming a meme known as "Diaper Hands" from getting a diaper stuck on his hand at the ball pit.
  • Entertainment Above Their Age: Invoked in the first movie. Greg lures Manny into reading Rodrick's magazine Moto Mamas by putting a Tootsie Roll in Rodrick's backpack so that he can get Rodrick in trouble.
  • First Day of School Episode: The first movie focuses on Greg's first day of middle school.
  • Foul Ball Pit: In The Long Haul, Greg lands in a ball pit at Corny's after going down a slide to catch Manny. He digs through the pit to look for Manny and finds that a diaper is stuck to his hand, so he starts screaming about it. This goes viral.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus:
    • In the first movie, when Greg and Manny are having breakfast, you can see Ice Age playing on a TV in the background.
    • Also in the first movie, during rehearsal for the school play, one of the kids can be seen playing Mario Kart DS.
    • During The Stinger of Rodrick Rules when Greg and Rowley are checking out their YouTube video, you can see that while the video only got 4 views, it received 24,963 comments.
    • In the third movie, the news report near the end has a ticker filled with strange news items, such as "High school kid accidentally eats salad", and "New 'square' wheel fails to impress".
    • In the Long Haul movie, the Beardos' van has a Florida license plate.
  • Garbage Hideout: In the film adaptation of Dog Days, Rodrick hides in a dumpster while he waits for Greg to sneak him into the club. He gets trash dumped on him when Greg takes too long and is not amused.
  • Generation Xerox: A blink and you'll miss it moment during the corn dog scene in the second movie shows three kids similar to Greg, Roey and Fregley sitting on the cafeteria floor like they did in the first movie.
  • Grossout Fakeout: In "Rodrick Rules", Greg goes to church, having sat on a candy bar. A little girl notices the stain and exclaims, "Poop! He's pooped his pants!".
  • Humiliation Conga: Greg suffers one at the beginning of the second movie, which finishes with him falling into a cake and subsequently getting beaten up by the irate birthday girl and her friends.
  • I Know Mortal Kombat: In Dog Days, Greg mistakenly believes that he knows how to play tennis because he's played Ultimate Tennis on the Wii, which is "basically the same thing".
  • Implausible Deniability:
    Frank: (displaying a photo of Rodrick's party on the TV screen) Can you explain what you're doing in this photo?
    Rodrick: That's not me.
    Frank: (lowers eyes) That's not you?
    (Beat)
    Rodrick: (averts eyes) Nope.
  • Insecure Protagonist, Arrogant Antagonist: Greg is an Easily Embarrassed Youngster like in the books, whereas Patty, his Sitcom Arch-Nemesis, is arrogant and entitled.
  • Instant Humiliation: Just Add YouTube!:
    • In the second movie, Greg and Rowley get a successful viral video out of Susan and Löded Diper, "Lame Band with Crazy Mom Dancing!" Rodrick is enraged.
    • And then there's the "Diaper Hands" subplot in the fourth film...
  • I Will Tear Your Arms Off: When Greg accidentally damages Pete Hosey's truck, the teen leader flips out:
    Pete Hosey: Are you kidding me?! I'm gonna rip off your arms and punch you in the face with your own FISTS!
  • Kiss of Life: Rodrick gets one of these when he pretends to be drowning in order to attract Heather Hills, who's working as a lifeguard. Unfortunately, Heather ignores him, and Rodrick gets the Kiss of Life from a big burly guy, despite Rodrick being both conscious and obviously breathing.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: For Greg in the second movie: Chirag Gupta is actually the one who gets the last laugh in Greg's "invisible Chirag" prank by tricking Greg into acknowledging him by pretending to have Holly want to meet Greg, only for it to be Chirag dressed like Holly instead. The result is Greg losing the little game as Chirag celebrates and the nearby Circle of Shame laughs at him.
  • Ludicrous Gift Request: In the adaptation of the first book, Rowley is seen sitting on Santa's knee and asking for a puppy, a cat, and a gumball machine.
  • Missing Child: In the movie adaptation of The Long Haul, Rodrick and Greg sneak off to a video game convention and their mother Susan notices they're gone. However, she sees them on TV and goes to the convention to tell them off.
  • Mr. Fanservice: Rodrick in the first three movies, thanks to several Shirtless Scenes and a heaping dose of Adaptational Attractiveness.
  • Oh, Crap!: Greg and Rowley at the end of the second movie when Rodrick finds out that they uploaded his talent show performance to YouTube with Susan dancing on stage.
  • Outfit Decoy: To trick Coach Malone whoo is chasing him and Rodrick in the 2nd movie, they put their hoodies on clothestand in the mall. Sure enough, Malone sees the hoodies from behind and tackles them to the ground, only to find that they're mannequins.
  • Petty Childhood Grudge: Patty Farrell hates Greg and is a rude Academic Alpha Bitch to him because he insulted her in front of their classmates when they were only in kindergarten.
  • Pottery Barn Poor: There are several instances of this in the films:
    • In the first movie, Greg and Rowley go off to the "rich part of town" on Halloween because the families living there give away more candy, when the decor of Greg's and Rowley's own houses (including Rowley's Cool Starship bed), tends to say that their own section of town isn't too badly off.
    • In the Movie Diary book, it's pointed out that Greg's pants were specifically faded to show that his clothes are hand-me-downs from his older brother, Rodrick. We can only assume that it's just the pants, because all of Greg's shirts look brand new.
  • Product Placement:
    • A Freeze-Frame Bonus in the first film shows a TV set playing Ice Age, another 20th Century Fox production.
    • Greg and Rowley are seen playing the Wii in the same movie.
  • Retraux: In the film version, "It's Awesome to Be Me" appears to have been made in the 1980s, complete with obviously outdated fashion. The book describing the film's production even lampshaded it.
  • Roger Rabbit Effect: There's at least one moment in every one of the live action films that briefly depicts the Heffley family and Rowley in the style of their original 2D illustrations against the live action setting, before going back to their live action forms. Usually in their introductions.
  • Scarily Specific Story: Rodrick scares Greg and Rowley with a story he made up to explain how Devil Worshipper Woods got its name. He makes a big point of the two victims of the devil worshippers being middle school kids, just like Greg and Rowley.
  • Secondary Character Title: Given that Dog Days is a combination of the titular book and The Last Straw, Sweetie the dog is barely in it and could be removed from the movie without affecting the plot much.
  • Serenade Your Lover: In the third movie, Rodrick tries to win Heather Hills with Justin Bieber's "Baby". Given she loathes Rodrick and the series' tendency for Comedic Sociopathy, it goes downhill pretty fast.
  • Shout-Out: In the movie adaptation of the first book, Greg's mom tells him something along the lines of: "It's our choices who make us who we truly are..."
  • Stereotypical South Asian English: Chirag Gupta speaks in a strong Indian accent, which is a major difference from his book counterpart, whose name is the only indicator of his ethnicity. His actor, Karan Brar, actually had to work with a dialect coach to get the accent right.
  • Title Drop: A non-verbal one in the second movie, when one of Rodrick's friends scribbles "Rodrick Rules" on the Heffleys' bathroom door.
  • Totally Radical: The It's Awesome to Be Me filmstrip in the first movie.
  • Trailer Spoof: A trailer for the Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul film starts out as yet another Marvel Cinematic Universe movie, until the Black "W" Symbol appears and fades to cartoon Greg Heffley in disguise of muscle and cape. When the announcer says "Wimpy", Greg deflates like a balloon as the disguise failed (the animation is actually reused from the first movie). Then the real trailer starts.
  • Unconventional Food Usage: In "Rodrick Rules", Rodrick puts a chocolate bar on Greg's car seat to make it look like he crapped his pants (in the book, Greg sat on it by accident).
  • War Reenactors: In the third movie, one of the many activities Frank forces Greg to participate in with him is a Civil War reenactment. Greg, of course, ends up ruining it.
  • Wholesome Crossdresser: In Rodrick Rules, Chirag dresses up as Holly to play a prank on Greg.


 
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Alternative Title(s): Diary Of A Wimpy Kid Rodrick Rules, Diary Of A Wimpy Kid Dog Days, Diary Of A Wimpy Kid The Long Haul

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Rowley calls out Greg for being a horrible friend after Greg tells him the trouble he got Rowley blamed for was his fault

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