Fox 2000 finds its 'Wimpy Kid'

Zachary Gordon cast in lead role of novel adaptation

Zachary Gordon has nabbed the title role in "Diary of a Wimpy Kid," Fox 2000's adaptation of Jeff Kinney's best-selling illustrated novels. Chloe Moretz is in negotiations for the female lead.

Thor Freudenthal is directing, and Nina Jacobson is producing via her Color Force banner along with Brad Simpson.

"Wimpy Kid" follows the travails of smart-aleck middle-school student Greg Heffley (Gordon) during the course of an academic year.

Moretz will play an intense student with a wry sense of humor who dresses in all black.

Rachel Harris ("The Hangover") has been cast as Gordon's mother.

The "Wimpy Kid" stories were told in a diary and cartoon format; more than 16 million copies are in print. Jeff Filgo & Jackie Filgo and Jeff Judah & Gabe Sachs wrote the screenplay. Carla Hacken and Nick D'Angelo are overseeing the project for Fox 2000.

An open casting call for extras is being conducted in Vancouver, where the movie begins principal photography Aug. 12. "Wimpy Kid" is set for an April 2 release.

A relative newcomer, Gordon has appeared in such films as "National Treasure: Book of Secrets" and "The Brothers Bloom," guest-starred on CBS' "How I Met Your Mother" and done voice work for the Nickelodeon series "Bubble Guppies." He is repped by Coast to Coast Talent and 3 Arts Entertainment.

Moretz, repped by Innovative Artists and 3 Arts, appears in "(500) Days of Summer" and plays Hit Girl in "Kick-Ass," Matthew Vaughn's adaptation of the Mark Millar comic book.