->''"From J.K. Rowling, the author of the book series that kept Borders open for another few years, comes the movie adaptation for people too lazy to read."''
-->-- '''WebVideo/HonestTrailers''', ''Film/HarryPotter''

Got a hit [[{{Literature}} book]]? Turn it into a hit [[TheMovie film]]. What could be more natural? The name alone will sell tickets, and adapting a hit book to the screen can't be that difficult, can it?

Unfortunately, as many studios have found, it's not quite that simple. Print and film are very different media; what works for one will fall flat on the other. A good rule of thumb is: Great literature usually makes a bad movie, while mediocre literature often makes a great movie.

In print, special effects are easy; in film, they are expensive. In print, describing a character's thoughts is normal; in film, a voiceover is seldom acceptable. In print, a story can take days to read; in film, audiences won't sit still for more than a few hours. Getting round these problems means changing the story, for better or for worse.

One issue is that a typical novel is simply [[DoorStopper much too long]] to fit all of it in a two (or even three) hour movie, so significant parts of it must be cut out. Sometimes entire characters may be changed, have their screen time lengthened/shortened (if not cut altogether), or important book-related plot points may be whizzed by, creating a moment of FridgeLogic. All of this tends to a trendy belief that no matter how good or bad the movie is, "The book was better."

Sometimes the film is so successful [[AdaptationDisplacement the book gets forgotten]]. Other times, the book is still read long after the film is forgotten. In the middle ground, the book will probably be republished with a cover based on the movie poster and "Now a major motion picture!" or something emblazoned on it.

The Film Of The Book is the opposite of {{Novelization}}, except when it's a ''[[RecursiveAdaptation new]]'' novelization of The Film Of The Book. These are almost always execrable, vastly shorter than the original book, or both.

[[Wiki/{{Wikipedia}} The Other Wik]]i has [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Film_adaptation something to say]] about this kind of thing in its usual style. Adaptations like this are likely to lead to OldGuardVersusNewBlood incidents.
----
!!Examples:

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder:Action]]
* ''[[Literature/TheBourneSeries The Bourne Identity]]'' had its setting moved from TheSeventies to the PresentDay, and as a consequence its plot, a ColdWar tale featuring RippedFromTheHeadlines villain Carlos the Jackal, had to be completely reworked and now featured the US government, rather than Carlos, as the BigBad. For some unearthly reason, Marie is turned from a Canadian economist into a German ''hippy''. On the other hand, the adaptations of ''The Bourne Supremacy'' and ''The Bourne Ultimatum'', which were shot by a different director, bear almost no similarity to the books and a major character ([[spoiler:Marie]]) is killed off fairly early on.
* ''Literature/JamesBond'':
** ''Film/{{Goldfinger}}'': [[Literature/{{Goldfinger}} The book]] has a plot to steal the gold from Fort Knox (which the movie Bond points out is impossible) using a nuclear bomb to blow open a door while everyone is suicidally close. The movie changes the scheme into a plan to raid the fort just long enough to place the nuclear bomb in the main vault. Any gold surviving the blast would be radioactive and thus worthless, making the value of Auric Goldfinger's own gold jump at least tenfold.
** ''Film/DiamondsAreForever'': While earlier films played it pretty close to the books (especially ''Film/OnHerMajestysSecretService'' and, for obvious reasons, ''Film/{{Thunderball}}''), this one changed everything about [[Literature/DiamondsAreForever the book]]'s plot and setting, except its central plot conceit about diamond smuggling. Also, the RoaringRampageOfRevenge was not there, at least not at first, in the actual followup novel, ''Literature/YouOnlyLiveTwice,'' being replaced instead by a massive and prolonged HeroicBSOD that takes [[spoiler: Bond being assigned a suicide mission by M to snap him out of it, and which does lead to the smackdown being placed, hard and ruthlessly, on Blofeld.]]
** ''Film/TheSpyWhoLovedMe'' was based off of one of Fleming's [[Literature/TheSpyWhoLovedMe least favorite Bond novels]], which centers around Bond rescuing a woman from two assassins in a ski lodge. The movie threw it out and replaced with Bond teaming up with a Russian agent to stop a plot to wipe out mankind.
** The only Bond movie from the eighties to follow the plot of the novel was ''Film/TheLivingDaylights'', which was [[Literature/OctopussyAndTheLivingDaylights a short story]] with major AdaptationExpansion.
** All of the ''Bond'' films borrow element from the various novels, with the titles being somewhat arbitrarily attached from the long list afterward. As such, any thing added probably came from one of the other books, and anything taken away will probably show up in a later film. (The Basil Rathbone ''Sherlock Holmes'' films used the very same technique).
* ''Film/{{Jaws}}'' started life as a harmless-enough page-turner with extremely unlikeable characters, and was adapted into one of the best movies ever made.
* ''Franchise/DieHard'' was based on an [[AirportFantasy airport novel]].
* ''Film/FightClub'': Even [[Literature/FightClub the book]]'s author thinks the film ended better. A foreword in a later run even {{lampshade|Hanging}}s this trope; "[[AdaptationDisplacement There was a]] ''[[AdaptationDisplacement book?]]''"
* Movie adaptations of Creator/TomClancy's ''Literature/JackRyan'' novels have gone from remaining true to the spirit of the original to... not, as the movie series rolls on, according to some fans of the original novels.
* ''Film/{{Watchmen}}'' obviously comes from the graphic novel ''ComicBook/{{Watchmen}}''.
* The ''Series/BandOfBrothers'' miniseries is based off of a historical novel written by Stephen Ambrose, and despite a few blatant inaccuracies. The sequel, ''ThePacific'', is based off of several veterans' memoirs.
* ''Film/TropicThunder'' {{lampshade|Hanging}}s and parodies this trope ''hard''. The entire premise of the film is that a movie company is attempting to make a film based on an in-universe book of the same name. Humorously enough, it's implied that the script is fairly faithful to the book... it's just that nobody has read either. The trope is eventually subverted twice when it's revealed that [[spoiler:[[BasedOnAGreatBigLie the author never went to Vietnam]]]] and at the end, when [[spoiler:the film is changed to ''Tropic Blunder'', a documentary on [[TroubledProduction how badly the production of the film failed]]]].
* ''Literature/TheGunsOfNavarone'' became [[Film/TheGunsOfNavarone a movie]].
* The book ''Literature/BattleRoyale'' was made into a film [[Film/BattleRoyale of the same name]].
* ''Smith's Dream'', by C. K. Stead, about an industrial dispute that grows into civil war in New Zealand, was adapted as ''Film/SleepingDogs'' in 1977, the first film to be entirely produced and set in that country.
* ''[[Literature/TheTomorrowSeries Tomorrow, When the War Began]]'', an adaptation of the book of the same name. This is used for a meta joke when one character, while reading a book, remarks about how the book is always better than the movie.
* The ''{{Rambo}}'' movies started out as an adaptation of a novel entitled "First Blood". The movies diverge from the source material after the first act of the first film, and never look back.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Adventure]]
* Tom Wolfe's ''Film/TheRightStuff''. The movie turned out to be pretty faithful.
* ''Literature/WhiteFang'' and ''Literature/TheCallOfTheWild'' by Creator/JackLondon. The problem seems to be that Hollywood can't handle an animal as the main star of a movie, and so completely rewrites the story to include an important human who is actually the main character. The canine star becomes the {{sidekick}}.
* Somewhat inverted in ''Film/MontyPythonAndTheHolyGrail'' with "The Book of the Film" which they dip into to cover the boring bits quickly.
* ''Film/TheSeeker'' is supposedly based on ''Literature/TheDarkIsRising''. The book is pretty good, to the point that some consider it an underground classic of (children's?) literature. The movie is pretty bad, to the point where it deserves to have an episode of ''[[Series/MysteryScienceTheater3000 MST3K]]'' based around it.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Biblical Stories]]
* ''Film/TheTenCommandments''
* ''Literature/BenHur''
* ''WesternAnimation/ThePrinceOfEgypt''
* ''Film/TheGreatestStoryEverTold''
* ''Film/ThePassionOfTheChrist''
* ''Film/TheNativityStory''
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Biography]]
* ''Literature/NakedLunch'' is un-adaptable, for a variety of reasons. (Chief among them; semi-obscene, no coherent plot.) Creator/DavidCronenberg's solution when doing [[Film/NakedLunch the film adaptation]] was to graft a few scenes and ideas from the novels onto a RomanAClef version of author William S. Burroughs' life.
* ''Film/MalcolmX'', based on Alex Haley's ''The Autobiography of Malcolm X''
* ''Film/WhatsLoveGotToDoWithIt'', based on Tina Turner's autobiography
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Children's Fiction]]
* Franchise/DisneyAnimatedCanon:
** ''Disney/{{Dumbo}}''.
** ''Disney/PeterPan''
** ''Disney/{{Bambi}}''
** ''Disney/TheJungleBook'' [[Literature/TheJungleBook Book]]-Kaa was a wise and trusted friend who took over as Mowgli's mentor when he was too grown-up for Baloo. Book-Hathi was the wisest and strongest of the animals and generally acknowledged as Master of the Jungle (until Mowgli learned a secret about him). The monkey-folk didn't have a king, and if they had, it wouldn't be a member of a different genus from a couple of thousand miles away. Book-"Father Wolf" is renamed "Rama" which is the name of a ''bull'' in Kipling's original. And many other things as well. Other than the setting and some names, there is next to no resemblance.
** ''Disney/OneHundredAndOneDalmatians'': A PragmaticAdaptation that actually stays commendably faithful to the original, more so than almost any other Disney film listed here. There's a mere ''two'' {{Composite Character}}s, the remaining human characters get somewhat expanded roles and in Mr Dearly's case a different job, Cruella's LivingProp husband is excised completely and most of the events of the trip from London to Suffolk are [[CompressedAdaptation streamlined a bit]]. The only significant criticisms that can be made stereotypical, [[OohMeAccentsSlipping inconsistent]] or occasionally [[NotEvenBotheringWithTheAccent non-existent]] British accents that the whole Disney Animated Canon suffers from, and the decision to turn the chapter in which all 101 dalmatians hitch a ride in the back of a removal van into a full-on ChaseScene. They get away with the latter, however, because it was [[CrowningMomentOfAwesome one of the best parts.]]
* ''Literature/CharlottesWeb'': Author Creator/EBWhite was extremely displeased (and reasonably so) with the first AnimatedAdaptation of his story. We will never know how he would have felt about the new live-action film, but at least it's mostly faithful to the book.
* ''Literature/WatershipDown'' had a fairly good animated movie, despite cutting off some characters and changing minor plot points. Fortunately, it wasn't {{Bowdlerise}}d.
* ''Literature/MrsFrisbyAndTheRatsOfNIMH'' is a good book, and ''WesternAnimation/TheSecretOfNIMH'' is an equally good movie, but while they share some similarity of plot, they diverge sharply in genre and character focus.
** ''WesternAnimation/TheSecretOfNIMH 2: Timmy To The Rescue'', a straight-to-video musical with virtually nothing to do with the first film.
* Much of Creator/RoaldDahl's children's fiction canon has been made into movies. Results vary considerably.
* Creator/DrSeuss: In addition to the many [[MadeForTVMovie animated TV specials]] based on the works of Dr. Seuss, four of his stories have made it to the big screen: ''Film/HowTheGrinchStoleChristmas'', ''Film/TheCatInTheHat'', ''HortonHearsAWho'', and ''WesternAnimation/TheLorax''. ''Horton'' was pretty well received, while both ''Grinch'' and ''The Lorax'' were more YMMV. However, ''Cat'' was widely considered to be a cinematic disaster. In fact, ''The Cat in the Hat'' is essentially the reason there will be no more live-action Dr. Seuss movies.
--> '''Wikipedia:''' As a result of frequent mature themes, the widow of Theodor Geisel (who holds the rights to his work) declared that there are to be no more live-action movies based on the works of Dr. Seuss, arguing that the film has clearly deviated from her late husband's family-friendly work.
* ''{{Holes}}'' by Louis Sachar got a pretty faithful adaption, but that's mostly because Sachar wrote the screen play.
* ''Film/EllaEnchanted'' takes the premise of [[Literature/EllaEnchanted Gail Carson Levine's novel]] and plays it for unsubtle comedy.
* ''[[Literature/TheBooksOfEmber City of Ember]]'' is actually not a bad movie on its own, though it did add a new {{mentor|s}} character for Doon and also a [[NightmareFuel giant mole that chases the kids through an empty storeroom]], among other things.
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Coraline}}'' is a nice example of PragmaticAdaptation. A lot of it is pretty inaccurate to [[Literature/{{Coraline}} the book]] in details ([[AdaptationExpansion they invent]] [[CanonForeigner a few new characters,]] for starters), but in spirit it was faithful. Some changes were adding a character named Wybie to allow Coraline a chance for exposition and tying him in to the backstory ([[spoiler:his grandmother's twin sister was one of the children the Other Mother kidnapped, leading him to comment that his grandmother didn't like renting the house to people with children.]]). Apparently author Creator/NeilGaiman saw that the first script was extremely faithful to the book and told them to make a few changes -- because if someone wanted the book they'd read the book.
* ''Film/WhereTheWildThingsAre''
* ''WesternAnimation/HowToTrainYourDragon'' is an animated film set in a very similar world to that of the original children's books, with many of the same characters, but in a PragmaticAdaptation the premise is altered to allow for dramatic conflict and dragon riding that impress on-screen.
* ''WesternAnimation/TheBraveLittleToaster'', even though [[KeepCirculatingTheTapes it's probably not possible to get the book anywhere except online]] [[CrackIsCheaper for a ridiculous price.]]
* ''Film/RamonaAndBeezus''
** There was a Canadian TV series in the 1980s based on the Ramona books, starring a young Sarah Polley.
* ''HarrietTheSpy''
* ''Literature/TheNutcracker'' has many adaptions, and sometimes fan wars over them.
* ''Literature/DiaryOfAWimpyKid'' actually started out as a {{webcomic}}.
* ''Film/ErikTheViking'' is The Film Of The Book in name only, and not even that, as the book was called ''The Saga of Erik the Viking''. After much disagreement between the Terrys -- author Jones and director Gilliam of ''Series/MontyPythonsFlyingCircus'' -- the ship being sneezed out of the dragon's nose ended up being the only scene the film and the book had in common. It's also not a children's film; it opens with the title character accidentally killing a woman he was trying to save from being raped, PlayedForLaughs.
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Shrek}}'' was considerably expanded from the source material.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Comedy]]
* ''Film/GetShorty'' as well as its sequel, ''Film/BeCool''.
* ''WaitingToExhale'': turned Robin from a career-driven woman who was burdened with caring for her elderly parents into a naive nymphomanic who had book sense but no common sense.
* ''TheMenWhoStareAtGoats''
* ''Film/{{MASH}}''
* ''Film/CatchTwentyTwo''
* ''Film/TheGraduate''
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Coming Of Age Story]]
* ''Literature/ToKillAMockingbird'': Replacing all of those subtly significant threads with the most important subplot (Boo Radley) and taking a more guarded approach to characterization would've made the book rather simplistic, but made the movie great.
* ''GoneWithTheWind''
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Drama]]
* ''Film/ForrestGump'' was adapted from a very funny novel about an IdiotSavant who becomes an astronaut, a chess master, a harmonica player and a millionaire into a guy who's InspirationallyDisadvantaged, and who [[HistoricalInJoke touches important events and people]]. The character of Jenny was changed from a sensible GirlNextDoor type into a tragic shallow party girl (admittedly deepening her character). The sequel, ''Gump And Co.'', followed more in the vein of the movie, both in increasing the number of random cameos and retaining the deaths of Forrest's Mom and Jenny, neither of whom died in the original book.
* ''Film/TheGodfather'' novel, written by Mario Puzo which becomes:
** ''Film/TheGodfather'' movie, directed by Creator/FrancisFordCoppola, which has since become one of the premiere classics of the genre. In the subsequent 18 years, two more movies were produced; Part II, which [[EvenBetterSequel surpassed even its worthy predecessor]]. And Part III, which [[{{Sequelitis}} didn't]].
** In the early 2000s, an author named Mark Winegardner published two [[{{Novelization}} books]], entitled ''The Godfather Returns'' and ''The Godfather's Revenge'', which in many ways are sequels to Part II. In many ways, the new novels read very much as if written in Mario Puzo's own hand, only enhanced in quality and subtly altering [[CanonDisContinuity facts which simply did not fit]]. Eventually, in the closing chapters of the second book, we learn that [[ManipulativeBastard Nick Geraci]], a Winegardner original character who had died trying to take over the Corleone family business, had written his memoirs while in exile and had them published posthumously. Which, in time, are...
** ...made into a trilogy of movies (two of which become cinema classics) detailing the story of a "fictional" mafia family through the years. Thus, it is suggested that, within this apparently separate universe, the [[BasedOnATrueStory events of the books and film are true]] and were [[LiteraryAgentHypothesis brought to us by somebody who was there]].
* ''Film/{{Apollo 13}}'' was based off of ''Lost Moon'', written by mission commander Jim Lovell about his experience on that mission.
* ''Film/PrimaryColors''. An epilogue is added to the movie that is not in the book but which naturally follows from [[VeryLooselyBasedOnATrueStory the story the book was very loosely based on.]]
* Most of JohnGrisham's early novels have been made into films by this point, with varying degrees of success. Even the novel that Grisham said he would never option for film (''Film/ATimeToKill'') was made into a movie... a fairly good one at that. It helps that Grisham's novels are essentially beach-read page-turners.
* ''Never Let Me Go'', based on the book of the same name by Kazuo Ishiguro, kept the majority of the plot intact, as well as pulling off spot-on portrayals of the three main characters.
* [[http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/1066120-scarlet_letter/ Several]] [[http://www.rinkworks.com/badmovie/reader/43.shtml reviewers]] [[http://www.hit-n-run.com/cgi/read_review.cgi?review=40461_wyldfyr note]] [[http://www.cnn.com/SHOWBIZ/Movies/9510/scarlet_letter/review/index.html that]] TheyJustDidntCare for ''TheScarletLetter''. This was mocked in ''Film/EasyA'', in reference to English students watching the film adaptations of their required reading in lieu of doing the actual reading.
* ''NoCountryForOldMen'' by Creator/TheCoenBrothers is a very rare example of a film that's even better than the book it was based off of. And the book is pretty damn good.
* ''MysteriousSkin'' is considered another rare success: It is both faithful to the book, and it presents the difficult subject matter with consideration instead of [[{{Anvilicious}} shoving it into the viewer's face]].
* ''Literature/TheLovelyBones'' is a highly-acclaimed book and [[Film/TheLovelyBones a movie]].
* ''Greed'', the film adaptation of the novel ''[=McTeague=]'', is famous in film history as the most literal adaptation ever. Director Creator/ErichVonStroheim faithfully recreated every scene as it appeared in the novel, included every character most of the dialogue (not a mean feat consider that it's a silent movie), and was shot on location. The result was a movie that was a unwatchable mess (except to film buffs) that's over ''ten hours'' long (for comparison, the unabridged audiobook of the novel was only 14 hours long). The producers trimmed the footage down to a more manageable 2 hours, whereupon von Stroheim disowned the film.
* ''TheColorPurple''
* ''Literature/DeepLove'' though the film was displaced by the later series.
* ''ColdMountain'' was based on the novel of the same name by author Charles Frazier.
* S.E. Hinton's ''TheOutsiders'' was adapted into a movie that was identical. To know one is to know the other.
* ''Film/LAConfidential'' managed to make a great film out of a brilliant book, despite having to shed about half a dozen subplots, compress the action from five years down to one, and alter the ending slightly.
** ''The Black Dahlia'' however, didn't do so well. JamesEllroy even mocked it before it was being made.
* ''Film/JackieBrown'', Creator/QuentinTarantino's adaptation of Elmore Leonard's ''Rum Punch''
* ''Film/LaReineMargot'', adapted from the novel of the same name by Creator/AlexandreDumas, père.
* ''Film/MyLeftFoot'' was made into an oscar-winning movie of the same name.
* The book ''{{Trainspotting}}'' was made into a movie, but not without a PragmaticAdaptation as the content was deemed unfilmable.
* The 2007 film version of ''Film/GoneBabyGone''. Director Creator/BenAffleck did a good job of condensing and streamlining a very complex novel.
* The novel ''The Day of the Locust'' was made into a feature film in 1975. The film received mixed critics.
* ''MildredPierce'' was adapted for the screen in 1945 and again for a TV mini-series in 2011.
* Larry [=McMurtry=]'s novel ''Film/TheLastPictureShow'' was made into a feature film in 1971.
* ''Literature/OrdinaryPeople''
* ''Film/SophiesChoice''
* ''Film/TheyShootHorsesDontThey''
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Fantasy]]
* ''Film/FieldOfDreams'' was based off of Creator/WPKinsella's novel ''Shoeless Joe''. The film eliminates Ray's twin brother Richard, and transfers Richard's rift with their father onto Ray himself. It also changes J.D. Salinger into the fictional author Terrance Mann and makes Ray's wife Annie a stronger character, and her brother a more believable "Bad Guy".
* ''Literature/HarryPotter'': Some removed plotlines. Major in the case of the third, fourth, and fifth movies, which took good chunks out of the main plotline. Most obvious in the third movie, as some of the stuff taken out was vital to understanding the plot. In the fifth film, a scene which foreshadows TheReveal of a Snape's motivations ''for his entire life'' was filmed, but cut, and not even included on the DVD as a deleted scene. This not only resulted in unknown actress Susie Shiner getting a DeletedRole, but has outraged many fans, who have been waiting for years to see her in this scene but it still has not been released.
** Cho and Harry's relationship in Order of the Phoenix is changed to take up less time. In the book, they date until Harry realizes they're only together because Cho thinks being with him will help give her closure over Cedric's death. In the film, after one kiss the romance tapers off. Presumably Harry just got over his crush by himeself.
** Also major in the case of the sixth movie, which misses the overall function of the book by almost entirely omitting [[spoiler: the lessons delving into Voldemort's past that ultimately help Harry understand and thus defeat Voldemort.]]
* ''Film/{{Eragon}}''. Multiple missing main characters, more main characters having a single line or so, completely different locations, general failure to understand universal laws such as magic in-universe, and a completely different ending. Proved a FranchiseKiller to the prospect of a movie of the sequel, since so much was omitted or defiled, although it still managed to make a profit.
* ''Literature/TheLordOfTheRings'', some notable differences are the removal of the Tom Bombadil and the Scouring of the Shire subplots, the increased role for Arwen, and the different motivations and actions of Faramir's character (and Elrond's). The biggest change was making Gimli a comic relief when the original book had no comic reliefs, probably a decision based on heightism.
* ''Literature/PercyJacksonAndTheOlympians'', based on the novel of the same name. The bare bones of the book's story is there ([[spoiler:Poseidon's child is framed for stealing Zeus's lightning bolt, he goes on a quest to get it back with Annabeth and Grover, he's successful]]). Might be more towards executive meddling because a number of the plots that were left out because they leave things open for future movies, which they didn't know wouldn't happen. Add to that some of the character personal changes (namely aging the main characters 4-6 years) made it easier to make the movie.
** They removed a swordfight with the god of war.
** The biggest outright removal was the [[BigBad main villain]] of the series, [[spoiler: Kronos]]. Among other things they changed the character of Grover from a somewhat serious character who had moments of comic relief, to an outright jive-talkin' black kid. They removed the concept of mist, which explains why [[WeirdnessCensor no one noticed]] greek gods actually existing. They didn't mention the prophecy that led to no children of the big three being born. All the characters were changed from ages 12 to ages 16, and the main overarching romantic plotline between [[spoiler: Percy and Annabeth]] was resolved in the first film. And they killed [[spoiler: Luke]] the other main villain of the series (even though it could be considered somewhat ambiguous, as he is last seen being launched into the water by the trident, so it is possible that he survived.
** The second movie is stated to be more accurate to the literature than the first one. Although there's a still a lot of small changes though, but like the first film, the main premise and plot of the book are the same in the movie.
* ''Literature/ThePrincessBride'' had a particularly accurate [[Film/ThePrincessBride film version]]. It helps that WilliamGoldman (who was an Oscar-winning scriptwriter to begin with) wrote both the book and the movie.
* ''Film/MaryPoppins''. P. L. Travers, author of the ''Literature/MaryPoppins'' books, was horrified with the result, even after demanding and getting an unusual amount of creative control.
* ''Literature/TheNeverendingStory'': [[Film/TheNeverendingStory The film]] doesn't actually show the whole book. Far from it. It simply couldn't. Even so, some changes were unnecessary. In the book the protagonist (Bastian Balthasar Bux) is an overweight, awkward kid and his Fantasia-based friend Atreyu is green-skinned. The second half of the book puts the protagonist in grave danger. The movie, if faithful to its source, needed to be at least two movies long.
** The second film covers the second half of the book, and takes more liberties with it.
* ''Literature/TheChroniclesOfNarnia'' films.
* ''TheGoldenCompass'', an adaption from the ''Literature/HisDarkMaterials'' novels, suffered from considerable ExecutiveMeddling for its [[RageAgainstTheHeavens subject matter]] and DownerEnding (which is on Website/YouTube!). While it is often praised as a good film by people who haven't read the book, the ExecutiveMeddling caused many fans of the series to hate the film.
* ''Film/{{Stardust}}'' took Creator/NeilGaiman's pointedly BittersweetEnding and changed it so that the last line of the movie is "And they all lived happily ever after". They also threw out Tristran's sister and step-mother. Then they changed the main character's name (removing the second R), removed the FairyTale and {{nursery rhyme}}s that marked it as a fairy tale for adults, but instead pumped it full of {{One Scene Wonder}}s, fleshed-out versions of previously bland characters (especially the one that Robert de Niro played), and gave the story a genuine climax.
* ''Film/InterviewWithTheVampire''
** ''Film/QueenOfTheDamned''
* ''Film/SevenFacesOfDrLao'' is the film adaptation of ''Literature/TheCircusOfDoctorLao''.
* Creator/{{M|etroGoldwynMayer}}GM's ''Film/TheWizardOfOz'', somewhat loosely based on [[Literature/TheWonderfulWizardOfOz the first book]], shortened the journey to Emerald City and ended the story shortly after the Wicked Witch was killed. Among other changes was addition of [[CanonForeigner original characters]] like Almira Gulch, creating a new subplot involving Dorothy's family. Perhaps the most infamous change in the movie was that Oz had been made an elaborate dream instead of a fantasy country. The reasoning for this was that [[ExecutiveMeddling executives believed that]] [[ViewersAreGeniuses audiences were too "sophisticated"]] [[FantasyGhetto to accept a "real" fantasy world.]]
* ''Film/WhatDreamsMayCome'' is based on a 1978 novel of the same name by Richard Matheson. There are substantial differences between the book and movie in the characters, the presentation of afterlife, and the ending. Matheson based his depiction of afterlife on extensive research into mysticism and near-death experiences, which he lists in a bibliography at the end. He states in an author's note at the beginning that the characters are the only fictional component of the book.
* ''Literature/{{Dinotopia}}''. The miniseries and TV series were very different than the books.
* When ''Literature/TheSagaOfDarrenShan'' was adapted into a movie, ''Cirque Du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant'', there was a mixture of outrage and pure disgust from fans of the series. The first three books were attempted to be crammed into the movie (plus added spoilers from book nine) meaning many scenes were missed out.
** It doesn't stop there. Some fan favourite characters were cut (Debbie and Sam) and put back in as a single entity: Rebecca the monkey girl. Personalities of both main and secondary characters were changed and an added pairing was put in, practically destroying a canon one apparent in later books.
** Something that also annoyed many UK and Ireland fans was the way the whole thing was Americanised, as the general consensus is that the main character is Irish, [[spoiler:due to him supposedly being the same person as the Author, just from a parallel world]].
* The {{Sky 1}} {{Made For TV Movie}}s based on the ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' novels have been generally well-received, although it's been observed they've been getting steadily more [[PragmaticAdaptation pragmatic]]. ''Discworld/GoingPostal'' keeps the main characters, their basic characterisation and the broad strokes of the plot, and proceeds to change almost everything else.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Horror]]
* Pick any Creator/StephenKing book, and chances are it's been adapted to film (in some cases, ''twice'').
** In turn, pick any of those movies. Chances are, Stephen King himself didn't like it. He's outright stated that he hates some of the movies based off his books, such as the two sequels of ''Children of the Corn'' and ''Film/TheShining'' (Creator/StanleyKubrick removed several plot elements that King felt very personal about, [[WriteWhatYouKnow because they were partly based on his own life]]). He did, however, like the movie's ending of ''TheMist'' even more than his original.
* All of Thomas Harris's books involving Hannibal Lecter -- in fact, the most recent one, ''[[Literature/TheSilenceOfTheLambs Hannibal Rising]]'', saw the screenplay (also by Harris) finished before the ''book'' was. The series of four novels has produced ''five'' movies (''Literature/TheSilenceOfTheLambs'', ''Film/RedDragon'', ''[=Hannibal=]'', ''Hannibal Rising'', and ''Film/{{Manhunter}}'', an earlier adaptation of ''Literature/RedDragon'' starring Wiliam Petersen). ''Literature/TheSilenceOfTheLambs'' is one of the few movies that is probably better than the book.
* ''Film/AnAmericanHaunting'' was based on the novel ''The Bell Witch: An American Haunting'' by Brent Monahan, which was [[VeryLooselyBasedOnATrueStory itself based]] on the Tennessee legend of The Bell Witch.
* Although frequently so altered as to be nearly completely unrecognizable, almost every single movie by Creator/StanleyKubrick and Creator/AlfredHitchcock were based on books (notable exceptions are ''Film/TwoThousandOneASpaceOdyssey'' and ''Film/NorthByNorthwest'', and Kubrick wanted the ''2001'' book written and out before the movie).
** The early sections of ''2001'' (set on the Moon) were based on Creator/ArthurCClarke's short story, "The Sentinel".
* ''Stir of Echoes'' is a movie "based" on a book of the same title by Richard Matheson. Other than one or two plot points, they have nothing else in common. The book itself is fairly outdated, which probably explains why the movie managed to be so removed from it and still be good.
* ''Literature/TheRelic'' was a highly entertaining book that has spawned a really interesting series. The movie, not so much.
* ''Film/{{Psycho}}'', the classic film by Creator/AlfredHitchcock, was adapted from a much less well-known book of the same name by RobertBloch.
* ''Literature/{{Dracula}}'' has been made into dozens of films, the most notable being [[Film/{{Dracula 1931}} the 1931 Bela Lugosi film]] (actually an adaptation of a play that was based on the book) and [[Film/HorrorOfDracula the 1958 Christopher Lee film]] (a direct but loose interpretation).
%%* ''Literature/{{Haunted 1988}}''
* ''Film/FlowersInTheAttic'' was adapted in 1987 from the 1979 novel of the same name.
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[[folder:Mystery]]
* ''Literature/TheDaVinciCode''.
* ''Literature/TheNameOfTheRose'' described itself as a "palimpsest" of the book. A palimpsest is a page of a manuscript that has had the text scraped off and been reused as blank space, a medieval practice (paper was expensive). Nowadays, both the original and the follow-up text can be read with UV light and other tricks. Appropriate for a movie based on a book about Franchise/SherlockHolmes in the 14th Century, no?
* Subversion, but also a confirmation of the reasoning behind most changes -- the Vayner brothers' 300 page detective novel ''Era Of Mercy'' was adapted nearly word-for-word into a 9 hour "cinematic serial". Even that didn't satisfy the fandom, which complained about insufficient motivation for one of the leads without a voiceover to explain his thoughts.
* JamesPatterson's first two novels, ''Along Came a Spider'' and ''Kiss the Girls'', became films.
** As did ''First to Die'', the first book in the Women's Murder Club series, though that was direct-to-DVD.
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[[folder:Romance]]
* ''Literature/{{Twilight}}''
* ''Literature/BloodAndChocolate'' was made into a movie in 2007, by completely subverting the entire theme presented in the original book.
* Creator/EmmaThompson's [[Film/SenseAndSensibility adaptation]] of ''Literature/SenseAndSensibility'' shows us scenes which are only exposited in the book, which makes the opening third easier to follow.
* ''Film/HowStellaGotHerGrooveBack''
* ''TheEnglishPatient''; the movie [[PragmaticAdaptation left out]] a lot of the book, in the process shifting the focus onto the title character's backstory. Often blamed for encouraging MisaimedFandom directed the destructive, violent love affair central to said backstory.
* ''Bollywood/{{Devdas}}'' has been adapted to film numerous times, with perhaps the best known being the 2002 version with Creator/ShahRukhKhan, Creator/AishwaryaRai, and Creator/MadhuriDixit.
* ''Literature/BeautifulCreatures''
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[[folder:Science Fiction]]
* With the exception of ''Literature/AScannerDarkly'', no book by Creator/PhilipKDick will ever be faithfully adapted. Mostly because he was crazy, and yet the books were incredibly smart. Also, almost none of the movies keep the titles of the books and stories that inspired them, mostly due to trying to turn quirky, introspective science fiction into bigass action movies, and the names had to reflect that switch.
* ''Film/ChildrenOfMen'' was more enjoyable than the book, which was a 350 or so page guide to how to do Christan symbolism in the least subtle way possible.
* ''Literature/{{Dune}}''. Creator/DavidLynch took a ''lot'' of liberties in the 1984 adaptation. The film's biggest hurdle, though, was telling the story in less than six hours -- if you've read the original, there's a reason its first volume is divided into three "books".
** [[SciFiChannel Syfy's]] MiniSeries, ''[[InCaseYouForgotWhoWroteIt Frank Herbert's Dune]]'' and ''[[InCaseYouForgotWhoWroteIt Frank Herbert's Children of Dune]]'', were much more faithful than David Lynch's film, though they still took a few liberties. Such as increasing certain characters' roles, and downplaying or outright removing other characters.
* ''Literature/TheHitchhikersGuideToTheGalaxy'' was made into a [[Film/TheHitchhikersGuideToTheGalaxy film]] (with the screenplay written by the book's author, DouglasAdams). An unusual example in that the series ''doesn't have'' a canon, which is how it's been since the beginning, and after a while DouglasAdams almost certainly did it deliberately. The books it was based on were comedic and satiric, but the laughs, except for a few throwaway lines, did not come from the dialogue or the situations but rather from the narration itself. The novel were themselves adaptations of the original radio series, as well as lending and taking elements with the British television production, during all of which Adams constantly fiddled with jokes and narrative order.
* ''Literature/TheHost''
* ''Film/TheHungerGames'' have so far (as of this writing only the first two books have been released as films) been rather faithful to the books, especially in terms of tone and theme. It is at the same time a PragmaticAdaptation, cutting out several minor characters and plot threads. One very noticeable change is in Haymitch, whose alcoholism is severely downplayed in the films.
* ''Literature/{{Divergent}}''
* Richard Matheson's novel ''Literature/IAmLegend'' has been adapted to film four times in four wildly different adaptations: ''Film/TheLastManOnEarth'', starring Creator/VincentPrice; ''Film/TheOmegaMan'', starring Charlton Heston; ''Film/IAmLegend'', starring Creator/WillSmith; and TheAsylum [[TheMockbuster mockbuster]] ''I Am Omega'', starring Mark Dacascos. Not a single one of those adaptations is faithful to the book.
* ''Literature/IAmNumberFour'' is based off of the book of the same name by Pittacus Lore, a penname of James Frey and Jobie Hughes.
* Creator/EdgarRiceBurroughs' ''[[JohnCarterOfMars A Princess of Mars]]'' was made into ''Film/JohnCarter''. Some needful updating was done but some very pointless major alterations were also made. Instead of Mars being a dying planet simply because it's really frigging old, the Therns were dragged in from a later book, ''Gods of Mars'', as the real power behind the Zodangan leader Sab-Than. He leads the mobile city (perhaps inspired by Creator/GregBear's ''Strength of Stones''?) of Zodanga. Mars' deprecated state is blamed on the planet-wide resource pillaging of the Zodangans, with the Therns as the shadowy big bad behind the scenes, though they show up in the first few minutes. The atmosphere factory, powered by Ninth Ray energy is nowhere in the film. It was likely excised to give Dejah Thoris a reason to be made over into a scientist working on a machine to use the Ninth Ray to restore the environment. To make it a family friendly instead of NC-17 film, everyone on Mars is wearing way too much clothing. ;) To the good, the designers got the Tharks, thoats, Woola, white apes and other critters dead on to the book. Too bad they didn't adhere so close to the actual story.
* ''Literature/{{Jumper}}'' was adapted into movie form. "[[InNameOnly Based on the novel]]" was very noticeable during the opening credits of [[Film/{{Jumper}} the movie]]. Other than the title, only three points from the source material remain: the protagonist ran away from his alcoholic father, he uses his ability to teleport ("jump") to steal money from a bank vault, and he ends up in a relationship with a girl named Millie; and the backstories involving each of these events were considerably changed.
* 1962's ''Film/TheManWhoFellToEarth'', by Walter Tevis, was adapted for the big screen in 1976. The basic plot is the same -- an AlienAmongUs, trying to save his dying planet/race via establishing a MegaCorp on our world to provide the means, falls prey to human treachery and addictive vices like alcohol and television. But the movie is far less straightforward in the telling of it, to MindScrew levels. In addition, the relationship between him and a hotel maid is upgraded from mere friendship to increasingly troubled romance and the sex lives of ''all'' the significant characters are explored (often in depth) whereas the book never even raises the issue. On the other hand, the side issue of how Earth will benefit if the hero's plot succeeds is dropped. Creator/TheCriterionCollection DVD edition allows viewers to compare and contrast the book and the film by including a physical copy of the novel as an extra feature.
* The Japanese book ''Parasite Eve'' circa 1995 got sent to the big screens in '97. Then in '98, ''{{Squaresoft}}'' caught on and made a video game sequel called (you guessed it) ''VideoGame/ParasiteEve''.
* ''Literature/ThePostman'' became ''Film/ThePostman''
* ''Literature/PlanetOfTheApes'' has had two very different film adaptations in [[Film/PlanetOfTheApes1968 the 1968 film]] and in [[Film/PlanetOfTheApes2001 the 2001 film]].
* Richard Matheson's novel ''Bid Time Return'' was made into ''Film/SomewhereInTime'' (the title of which was used for later editions of the book). There are some significant changes in its adaptation to screen, most notably in the period to which the protagonist travels back in time (in the book, it's the late 19th century, in the movie early 20th) and in the nature of what's happening (in the book, but not the movie, the protagonist is dying from a brain tumor, raising questions about whether the time-traveling experience is real or not). Also, the movie but not the book includes a spectacular [[TemporalParadox ontological paradox]] centering around a watch with apparently no origin (the protagonist receives it from an old lady in the present day; he goes back in time and gives it to a younger version of the same lady, and that's how ''she'' got it in the first place; and so on).
* ''Film/StarshipTroopers'': The script was already mostly written (under the title "Bug Hunt at Outpost Nine") when they heard about "[[Literature/StarshipTroopers a book that had a bug war similar to the one in the script]]" as well as Verhoeven ''never finishing the actual novel''.
* ''Literature/BattlefieldEarth'''s [[Film/BattlefieldEarth film ]] is a good example of a PragmaticAdaptation not being enough to salvage the source material, but can at least be said to have turned out better than a purely faithful adaptation.
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->'''[[WesternAnimation/RockosModernLife Heffer:]]''' "''The book was better.''"
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