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* Esmeralda from ''Literature/TheHunchbackOfNotreDame'' changed from TheIngenue in the original story to an ActionGirl in the [[Disney/TheHunchbackOfNotreDame Disney animated version]]. Claude Frollo also counts because the original one wasn't a combatant.
* [[OurDragonsAreDifferent Toothless]] of ''Literature/HowToTrainYourDragon'' went from a tiny green dragon which could fit on [[ABoyAndHisX Hiccup's]] shoulder in the book series to a Night Fury, decribed as "the unholy offspring of lightning and death itself", and the dragon every viking fears most -- rather, the ''only'' dragon vikings fear in [[WesternAnimation/HowToTrainYourDragon the film adaptation]].
* [[ActionGirl Rapunzel]] from ''Disney/{{Tangled}}''.
** Technically, you could say ''everyone'' in ''Tangled,'' since the original story doesn't really have any sort of "action." [[BigBad Gothel]] is a sort of weird example--she becomes more {{Badass}} by becoming ''less'' powerful, going from a witch in the fairy tale to a knife-wielding badass (she knows a spell to retain her youth and is also implied to be able to fly -- which is seen in only one scene--, but otherwise she never uses magic in the whole film).
* In the original ''[[Literature/TheJungleBook Jungle Book]]'' novel, [[BigBad Shere Khan]] was portrayed as being crippled due to a leg deformity he received during birth and was a rather pathetic SmugSnake to boot. In the [[Disney/TheJungleBook Disney adaptation]], however, Khan is portrayed as a menacing, bloodthirsty, yet [[LargeHam hammy]] and [[LaughablyEvil whimsical]] predator who is feared by everyone in the Indian jungle and is constantly determined to kill Mowgli for being a human. In the sequel, however, he is [[KnightOfCerebus flat out]] menacing.
** And in the Soviet animated adaptation, Shere Khan is a scary villain from his very first appearance.
*** Though it goes both ways, as Shere Khan is a lot more cunning and manipulative in the book.
** This seems to make the anthropomorphic transition as well, if ''WesternAnimation/TaleSpin'' is of any evidence. In this adaptation, he is a ruthless and extremely savvy business man that could easily have Baloo hunted down and crushed [[ScrewTheMoneyIHaveRules if not]] for his [[VillainousVirtues moral code]].
* In the original book of ''Literature/SleepingBeauty'', there was a minor villain known as The Evil Fairy. When the book was [[Disney/SleepingBeauty adapted into a film]], that minor baddie was morphed into Maleficent, one of the most badass Disney villains to date.
* ''WesternAnimation/RiseOfTheGuardians'' lives by this trope. Santa is a former Russian bandit who duel-wields swords and goes by "North", the Easter Bunny is an AwesomeAussie with boomerangs as weapons, the Sandman is the most badass out of all of them, and the Tooth Fairy, while the weakest, can definitely hold her own in a fight. Jack Frost has also been de-aged and is very powerful, while Pitch Black the Boogeyman is capable of taking them ''all'' on.
* ''Disney/{{Aladdin}}'' gives basically everyone this treatment. Aladdin goes from being a lazy kid who's ''maybe'' a little clever to a GuileHero with LeParkour abilities to rival [[VideoGame/AssassinsCreed Altair]]. The Princess goes from being a beautiful, but otherwise flat, LoveInterest to a RebelliousPrincess who impresses Aladdin by being smart and fun, as well as pretty. Then there's Jafar, who is a CompositeCharacter of an evil sorcerer and an ObstructiveBureaucrat vizier who ''wasn't'' the BigBad. He now ''is'' the BigBad who uses every bit of both magical and political power he has. (The Genie is an exception. He [[AdaptationalHeroism is a kinder, more individualized character]] who is ''not'' more powerful then his story counterpart; the Genie from the story could have easily done the same things ''and'' never mentioned the three rules the one in the movie did.)
* ''WesternAnimation/JLAAdventuresTrappedInTime'' sees Dawnstar get some impressive light powers to fill out her comic's powerset, which was limited to tracking and flight. Then the Time Trapper, who was always a major powerhouse, gets treated like a Lovecraftian horror here. It's a Shout-Out to the Paul Levitz/Keith Giffen Legion run where he was in his Entropy Personified incarnation.

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