12 Book-to-Movie Adaptations With Drastic Plot Changes

by: on | in Random Stuff | 13 Comments


Obviously when a book is made into a movie, there are going to be some changes. However, there are some book-to-big screen adaptations that shift things around entirely, making it seem like a brand new concept.

This can certainly be said for the upcoming movie adaptation of Gillian Flynn's popular book, Gone Girl. Though the movie isn't hitting theaters until October, there have been reports that the whole third act of the Ben Affleck flick is drastically different from the book. However, we'll have to wait and see the movie when it actually comes out to be the judge of that.

Either way, this wouldn't be the first time film makers took creative liberty and decided to shake things up on the big screen. Oh and just a heads up, the gallery is going to have some major SPOILERS, so you've been warned. To see some of the most drastic plot changes, click through the gallery below!

1. My Sister's Keeper

"At the end of the movie, Kate (Sofia Vassilieva) dies. In the book, Anna (Abigail Breslin) wins her court case, then while driving to the hospital with her attorney, they are in an accident. Anna is brain dead, and her lawyer, who now has power of attorney, gives permission for her kidney to be given to Kate. Kate then makes a full recovery and goes into remission." (via IMDB)

Photo: New Line Cinema

2. A Walk to Remember

The book is set in the 1950s, while the movie is set in "current" day (2002). Also, there is a scene in the book where Jamie gives Landon her mother's Bible, but in the movie she gives him her mother's favorite book and specifically mentions it isn't a bible. Also, at the end of the book Jamie is so sick she can barely walk down the aisle at their wedding, but is eventually able to do so -- hence the name "A Walk to Remember." In the movie Jamie doesn't struggle walking down the aisle at all.

Photo: Warner Bros.

3. Harry Potter

There were tons of changes made in the big screen versions of this franchise, some of which include: Snape wasn't there for Lily's death; Harry was stupefied in the book when Dumbledore died, which is why he didn't/couldn't move when Snape killed him; in the movie, Snape said shh and that was it.

Photo: Warner Bros.

4. Gone Girl

About halfway through the book, you find out that Amy had set up an elaborate plan to frame her husband Nick for her disappearance, then at the end of the book Amy and Nick end up staying together because she's pregnant, even though they both now know all of each other's secrets. It remains to be seen how the ending of the movie will change, but it's reported that it'll be different from the book.

Photo: Entertainment Weekly

5. Breaking Dawn Part II

The movie added an entire fight sequence where there were many character deaths which lead many to think they were actually dead. However, the whole fight scene was merely a vision of what COULD have happened if the two sides did fight.

Photo: Summit

6. PS, I Love You

The book is set in Ireland, while the movie takes place in NYC (but does have scenes in Ireland). Also, in the book there are far more male characters, but they were taken out in what many assume was a ploy to make the movie more "girly."

Photo: Alcon Entertainment

7. Divergent

There is a whole subplot involving Edward getting his eye stabbed by Peter in the book, but Edward is barely involved in the movie. Also, when Tris is attacked by Peter and Al, there is a sexual assault element where they make fun of Tris' body -- this was removed from the movie. Also, Tris is only a couple of years younger than Four in the book, but age isn't really explained in the movie.

Photo: Summit

8. Dear John

There were MANY changes made in this adaptation, but some include: "In the book, Savannah was a brunette, with a small gap in her teeth; in the film, she is a blonde with no gap in her teeth" also, in the book, Savannah and John do NOT end up together, but they do in the movie.

Photo: Warner Bros.

9. The Hunger Games

The character of Madge was completely cut out of the movie, also, the muttations that attacked the remaining tributes at the end of the games were "ghosts" of the former tributes in the book. In the movie, they were just rabid animals.

Photo: Lionsgate

10. The Notebook

At the end of the book, Allie recognizes Noah, and it's hinted that they are about to make love. In the movie, they die in each other's arms.

Photo: New Line Cinema

11. The Mortal Instruments

"They didn't have Simon change into a rat, which actually kinda ruins a major plot point in the remaining books. In the book, he bites a vampire while he's a rat, so he becomes a special type of vampire that can walk around during the day (Daylighter); in the movie, he never becomes a rat and it looks like he got bitten by a vampire, so... he'd theoretically just be a regular vampire that has to stay indoors in the sequels."

Photo: Sony

12. Jurassic Park

Just about everyone in the book dies in the end, while in the movie most everyone is able to escape.

Photo: Universal

Divergent's final movie getting split into two!

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  • Triauna

    Yep. The divergent ending was completely different from the book and the scenes with Edward. He was mentioned but I feel that it was important for him to be in it. Breaking Dawn ending was good though despite it not being in the book; it was good that they added that.

  • Isabel Reyes

    Ummm Simon is a Daylighter because he drank some of Jace’s blood in City of Ashes. Had nothing to do with him becoming rat, that’s just how he became a vampire in the first place since he was a normal vampire until he drank the angel blood that comes from a shadowhunter

  • Sammy

    Breaking Dawn Part 2 had the biggest plot twist!

  • Haley

    alos Ella Enchanted, and Blood and Chocolate…..

  • Carla

    Here to comment about Simon from TMI, but seems like a bunch of people already did. The fact that he’s a normal vampire at the beginning of his vampire life is kind of an important subplot in City of Ashes, because it makes it a lot more complicated for him, since he thinks at some point he will have to tell his mom about vampirism because she will notice that he doesn’t go out in daylight anymore. Also, you’re suggestion that drinking vampire’s blood will turn you into a daylighter is wrong; it’s actually just part of the regular process of becoming a vampire, at least in the TMI/TID books.

  • jackie

    Umm… peetas leg anyone?

  • Lisa

    You forgot to mention that the end of ‘Divergent’ was changed COMPLETELY – ruined the book.

  • Gabby

    Actually Sinton became a Daylighter because he drank angel’s blood from Jake not because he turned into a rat… but the vampire in the movie drugged Simon, kidnapped him and bit him. If that happened in the book the vampires would have been killed since all the things they did go against the rules of the accords.

  • Annabeth

    Percy Jackson should be there. The movie was NOTHING like the books.

  • Hana

    Um, Your facts on the mortal instruments movie is wrong, Simon didn’t turn into a daylighter until the end of city of ashes.

  • Quenna

    ACTUALLY in the City of Bones, Simon IS a regular vampire, that is until he DRINKS Jace’s blood, which is what makes him different.. Who writes these posts?

    • Morgan

      I’m so glad that there are other people to explain this to them! I always feel like I’m the only one who catches these things! Even though I know I’m not

  • Sw

    Simon doesn’t become a daylighter because he bites a vampire while he’s a rat. He becomes a daylighter because Jace gives him his blood.