Busy Breslin preparing for laughs, thrills


NEW YORK -- Spencer Breslin has landed the title role in the high school comedy "Harold" opposite actor-producer Cuba Gooding Jr. and a lead role in M. Night Shyamalan's thriller "The Happening."

Breslin, known for his title role in "The Kid" and lead performances in "The Cat in the Hat" and the two "Santa Clause" sequels, will star as Harold, a prematurely balding student trying to adapt to a new high school. Gooding will portray a janitor who befriends the teased teen in the City Lights Pictures/M.E.G.A. Films production.

In 20th Century Fox's "The Happening," Breslin appears with Mark Wahlberg, who plays a father trying to lead his family to safety when a natural disaster threatens to destroy the planet.

Breslin, the 15-year-old older brother of "Little Miss Sunshine" Oscar nominee Abigail Breslin, describes his role in "Happening" as "a typical teenage boy, a bit of a smartass." He claims he "hasn't been clued in" to other aspects of his role in the film, which he begins shooting in August in Philadelphia, including whether his character is part of Wahlberg's family. Like most of Shamalayan's movies, the project is shrouded in secrecy. "I read an older draft of the screenplay which may change," Breslin said.

The actor knows he's right for "Harold," which starts filming this month in New York. "It's only one of a couple scripts over the last two years that made me laugh nonstop," he said. "My friends always call me 'the neurotic old man,' and my character acts like an old guy, so it's a good fit."

Danny Fisher's City Lights Pictures and Morris S. Levy of M.E.G.A. Films are producing and financing the film. The executive producers are Sam Zietz, City Lights CEO Fisher and Maxwell Sinovoi. Jason Shuman and William Sherak will produce for Blue Star. Michael Califra will co-executive produce for City Lights.

Breslin is co-repped by WMAWilliam Morris and Coast to Coast Talent Group and managed by Beth Cannon at Envision Entertainment.