Adaptation Dye-Job

Kurz: What's up with her hair color?
Kalinin: Since when is black hair out of the ordinary? Especially for Japanese people?
Kurz: Uh, you mean blue hair?
Kalinin: No, I mean black hair! See? It says here right in the book!

So you've just watched The Movie of your favorite series. And it was good. There was one detail, however, that they missed. The main character's hair, blond in the original, was brown, and the wacky sidekick's hair was a darker shade of yellow than usual. And why was the villain's jacket orange?

At least that's the most common version of this trope. For some reason as a work moves from one medium to another characters' hair colors will be changed, costumes will be toned down, color schemes will be swapped about or adjusted. While occasionally there may be a justification for this (as may be the case for works which were originally in Black and White or monochromatic), more often than not it is just a random change made as a work is adapted.

One particularly common adaptation dye job for costumes is that more often than not, in a movie adaptation, everyone now wears black. (This is mainly due to Rule of Cool and the actors wanting to look slimmer.) Conversely, in animated adaptations, colors are often brightened, diversified, or flattened, to make things easier on the character artists and for maximum visual clarity on a small screen.

It is unclear why matters of color are one of the things executives target first, but it can cause problems down the line if any of the original color choices had symbolic meaning.

This is usually excused in the case of Legacy Characters. Usually. It's also generally justified when casting for a live-action version of a work, as most casting directors favor, you know... acting ability over resemblance to the original character. And as shown in the examples, live-action also has different aesthetic considerations to animation, meaning different choices must be made for things to look good. But some fans bring it up regardless.

Related to Spell My Name with an "S". Can be related to Race Lift, if the skin color changed with the hair. Though the visual effect can be similar, this is not related to Palette Swap. For when the character is changed so much as to be an entirely different character, that's In Name Only, and this can end up as a Sub-Trope.

Dyeing for Your Art can Avert this, though it won't always. See also Hair Color Dissonance, Suddenly Blonde.

Examples (sorted by the original media)

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    Anime and Manga 
  • In both Ai no Kusabi OVA adaptations, Riki has brown eyes instead of his distinct black eyes from the novel.
  • The OVA of Angel Sanctuary gave Kurai periwinkle hair, while it is silver in the manga.
  • Development of the Armored Trooper VOTOMS anime predated the childrens' manga tie-in by Minoru Nonaka, who inexplicably changed some characters' color schemes (and overall appearances) in his adaptation:
    • Fyana went from having brown hair and eyes to her hair being jet black and her eyes being green.
    • Vanilla Vartla, along with having his skin dramatically lightened, has his hair changed from blond to a deep brown or orange, with it inked as a solid black in the interior artwork.
    • Ru Shako's hair goes from gray to black, while his skin is also lightened several shades.
    • Pol Potaria is a brunet in the anime, but a blond in Nonaka's version, while his green jumpsuit is changed to be blue.
  • Attack on Titan: Both Eren Yeager's windows and curtains. Eren has dark brown hair and vibrant green eyes in the anime which is a clue to him being the Rogue Titan, but jet-black hair and steely grey eyes in the manga.
  • The title character Birdy the Mighty has white and pink hair throughout her incarnations, but how its colored varies: the original manga and OVA both have it with the right side is white and the left side pink; the remake manga makes it where the her bangs are pink, but the rest is white; and Decode makes it where her bangs and the bottom of her mane are pink, but the rest is white.
  • Ciel Phantomhive of Black Butler has dark grey or possibly black hair in the manga, which is rendered as kinda blue-ish in a few of the illustrations. The anime ran with it and gave him deep blue hair, incidentally making his Curtains Match the Window.
  • Bleach:
    • Ichigo's reiatsu is yellow in the manga but blue in the anime, his Bankai reiatsu is jet-black in the manga but given a blue/red outline in the anime, and the stripes on his Hollow mask are red in the manga, but changed to reddish-black in the anime.
    • Rangiku Matsumoto went from bright blonde in the manga to strawberry-blonde in the anime. Oddly, she gets her original hair color back for one filler episode, 304.
    • Nelliel's hair is green in the manga, but changed to teal in the anime.
    • Gin's eyes were made red by the anime, and gold by the video games. Once the manga revealed they were actually Icy Blue Eyes, the anime changed them to match the manga.
    • Yoruichi and Mila Rose both have jet-black hair in the manga. Their anime counterparts have purple and dark brown hair, respectively.
    • Orihime has grey-brown eyes in the manga, while in the anime they are just grey.
    • Yumichika's feathers consist of one pair of solid red feathers and one pair of solid yellow feathers in the anime. In the manga, the feathers are actually multihued and iridescent, appropriate for a metaphorical "peacock". Also, his zanpakutou is purple in the anime but official artwork by Kubo reveals his zanpakutou is actually blue (albeith a shade of blue that leans towards the purple end of the spectrum).
    • In the manga, Byakuya's Senbonzakura forms are all white. However, the anime changes this to pink for all forms, except for Hakuteikan which is left white.
    • The anime gave Ryuuken dark brown hair in Uryuu's flashbacks, making his white hair age-related. However, in the manga, Ryuuken's had white hair since at least early childhood.
  • Bobobo Bo Bobobo: Softon's ice-cream swirl-esque head is brown in the manga (denoting it as poop, hence the jokes), and pink in the anime (denoting it as ice cream, subbing out the "poop jokes" for the sake of censorship). Beauty's hair is also a deeper shade of pink in the anime than in the manga.
  • In Cardcaptor Sakura Sakura has blonde hair (sometimes with reddish tones) in the manga, but the anime gave her brown hair instead (which people sometimes interpret as "auburn" for whatever strange reason). Syaoran is also given brown hair, but this is more excusable since one color card in the original manga arc depicts him with brown hair (although in the artbooks, his hair is always blond as well). Tomoyo's eyes are purple in the manga and blue in the anime, but they switch to dark brown on the Clamp in Wonderland 2 music video.
    • Sakura's mother, Nadeshiko, has light brown hair in the anime; one color drawing in the manga has her with dark violet hair.
    • In the manga, Eriol’s robes are black, and the rim on the collar of the cape and the ends of the sleeves is red, but in the anime, the robes are dark blue, and the rims are light blue.
  • Chii from Chobits has been shown with white, gray, and various shades of blonde in the manga, and her eyes were amber colored. The anime gave her yellow hair and brown eyes.
  • The original Chrome Shelled Regios light novels say Leerin has blonde hair, compared to her auburn-red hair in the anime. Curiously, the cover art for said novels depict her exactly as she appears in the anime.
  • In the live-action Cromartie High School film, Hayashida's trademark purple mohawk is replaced with a full head of black hair. Curiously, Maeda keeps his blond hair.
  • Cyborg 009 has had many examples of this trope throughout its different adaptations:
    • 009's hair was initially undecided in color illustrations by Ishinomori, who vacillated between depicting it as blond and as a light reddish-brown. Officially, it's stated to be "chestnut brown", and appears that way in the 1980 "Legend of the Super Galaxy" film and in the 2001 TV series. In the mid-1960s films by Toei, his hair was depicted as jet black and he lost his Peek-a-Bangs (which he gained back in the subsequent 1968 series). The 1979 series by Toei gave him blond hair, while the 2012 film 009 RE: CYBORG gave his hair more of a gingery orange shade. The 1960s films also gave 009 a white uniform and red scarf, as opposed to a red uniform and yellow scarf.
    • 001's hair color varied between being silver and blond in Ishinomori's color artwork, while the 1960s films and "Legend of the Super Galaxy" gave him brown hair. All other adaptations have depicted his hair silver, although the 2001 series also gives it a slight Hair Color Dissonance and sometimes depicts it as a light teal.
    • 002 has reddish-orange hair in Ishinomori's colored artwork and in both the 1979 series, "Legend of the Super Galaxy", and the 2001 series. However, the 1960s films give him brown hair, and 009 RE: CYBORG and the recent American comic book adaptation depict him as a blond (as well as giving his appearance a complete overhaul). His eyes are also blue in the 1979 series, while the 2001 series depicts them as brown. The two 1960s films also give him a lavender uniform, as opposed to red, and removed his scarf.
    • 003 is generally a blonde in the manga artwork, while the early Toei films gave her dark brown hair, "Legend of the Super Galaxy" gave her light brown hair, and 009 RE: CYBORG changed it to be a light orange shade. While her uniform is red in every other adaptation, the two Toei films depicted her uniform as a bright magenta with blue accents.
    • 004 is nearly always silver-haired, with the exception of the two Toei films that gave him dark brown hair (and changed his uniform from red to lavender).
    • 008 had black hair in the manga artwork and the early anime adaptations, but was changed to be a Dark-Skinned Blond in the 2001 series and the American comic adaptation.
  • In the live-action Death Note movies, Misa Amane has the brown hair natural to her actress, instead of the blonde she had in the anime and manga. Other characters were given relatively normal Japanese hair, but hers stood out the most. Also in the anime Misa gets symbolic light blue hair in one episode when everyone goes into "thinking mode", and a brief shot in the first opening shows her with deep blue hair and golden eyes.
    • The Shinigami eyes' color scheme changed between adaptations. In manga color artwork, they're shown to consist of pale yellow sclerae, golden irises, and red pupils. In the live-action films, the users' irises simply turn gold and demonic-looking. In the anime, their irises glow red.
    • Matt was never given a canon hair color in Obata's artwork, but his hair was an odd brownish-green in the anime. Doujinshi and fanfic often have Matt's hair be a lovely shade of auburn or maroon or pink. The second DS game gave him blue hair, while trading card artwork depicts his hair as an emerald green color.
    • L has black hair which sometimes flashes blue for symbolic purposes in the anime. But he appears to have blond hair on the poster which is the page image.
    • Mello had hair that ranged from light to golden blond in manga illustrations, while the anime gave him more of a darker shade. His eyes also changed from black to blue, and his black vest became brown. Yet in the first color image of Mello, Obata had given him white hair, as he initially intended for L's successors to resemble a pair of twins.
    • Depending on the anime episode Light's hair appears to be dark brown, light brown, or auburn, and like how L's hair flashes blue Light's hair sometimes flashes a bright candy red, again for purely symbolic purposes. On the manga cover art Light's hair changes from brown to red to blonde.
    • Mikami who normally has black hair has blonde hair on one of the covers of the manga. Also, like Light and L, Mikami gets a symbolic "thinking mode" hair dye job in the anime that turns his hair purple. Others get the symbolic thinking mode hair too: Near's white hair turns teal. Matsuda, Aizawa, Namikawa, and Naomi all have black hair but they get the symbolic thinking mode hair dye too—Matsuda's turns yellow, Aizawa is green, Namikawa is purple, and Naomi is dark blue.
  • Ai Haibara of Detective Conan has very light strawberry blonde hair in the manga and light brown or auburn hair in the anime. Shinichi Kudo's mother also goes from blonde to brunette, as does Ran's friend Sonoko.
  • In Devil Hunter Yohko's first illustrations (and manga) Yohko is portrayed with black (or very dark brown) hair and green eyes; the anime changes them both to a dull brown.(Again, ugh) Haruka had lavender/pink hair with a blue bow and white outfit and the anime gives her dark green hair, a pink bow, and a red outfit. Azusa's colors are completely changed as well.
  • Canon Immigrant Ryo Akiyama of the Digimon franchise's first appearances in color, in the Anode and Cathode Tamer games for the Wonderswan and in Digimon Adventure 02, have him with brown eyes. By the time he reaches Digimon Tamers, his later games, and the rerelease of his first games, his eyes are blue.
  • In the Dr. Slump manga, the Gatchans had orange hair. Their hair is bright green in the '80s anime adaptation, while blond in the '90s series. The second series changed up other characters' colors as well:
    • Arale has purple hair in both the manga and first anime, but was given brown hair.
    • Midori went from being a curly blonde haired woman in the manga and original anime, to having straight brown hair.
    • Akane's hair shifts between being a dark gold and a light orange shade in the first anime, while she has dark auburn hair in the later series. Her sister Aoi also went from having deep red hair, to it being brown.
    • In the recent full-color rerelease of the Dragon Ball manga, the chapters featuring the Penguin Village case give a few different color schemes. The Gatchans become blond like in the second anime, while Arale's hair becomes a lighter purple (almost magenta), and Akane also becomes a blonde. Meanwhile, Midori takes on Akane's former orangey hair color.
  • Dragon Ball:
    • In the original manga, Bulma, her father, and her two children all have purple hair (although Bulma did also appear in some color illustrations with blue-green hair). In the anime, Bulma's father and son still have purple hair, but Bulma and her daughter have blue-green hair. Weirdly, the 10th anniversary movie gives Bulma back her purple hair, but has Goku wearing his anime-only Dragon Ball GT clothes. Bulma is also shown to have violet eyes in some of Toriyama's color illustrations, while the anime goes with blue.
    • Dragonball Evolution gives Bulma blonde hair with blue streaks and makes Yamcha blonde. Bulma was to initially have her blue hair (and also was considered to have pink hair), but the director and her actress hated how the wig looked and it was discarded after a costume test.
    • The manga has Karin colored white, brown, or blue. The anime keeps him white.
    • When Vegeta and Nappa appear for the first time in Dragon Ball Z they are shown in completely different color. Nappa has brown armor instead of yellow, but Vegeta had red/brown hair and orange and green armor.
      • Their colors are corrected later on, and Vegeta's colors are fixed during his first appearance in Dragon Ball Kai. Nappa was ignored for some reason, despite being easier to fix.
    • Kaioshin and Kibito switched skin colors when transitioning from manga to anime. Their costumes are also completely different colors.
    • Piccolo's non-green skin patches are yellow in the manga and a pinkish color in the anime.
    • Goku's gi is a pale yellow color in the manga but orange in the anime.
    • Cell is a dark green color in the manga and a bright neon green in the anime.
    • Most of the auras of the manga, even those of Super Saiyans, are white or a pale blue (if you are to believe the Kanzenban cover art).
    • Kaioken is a darkish red/magenta color in the anime, but it's pure red in the manga. This is fixed for a few episodes in Kai, but it's back to being the dark red/magenta color when they got to Namek.
    • Uub has a green sash, white belt, and orange pants in the manga, but it's all brown in the anime.
    • Pilaf's robots at the Red Ribbon arc's end are different colors in the anime (Blue for Pilaf, pink for Mai and green for Shuu) but they're all orange in the manga.
    • Interestingly, many of the "original manga colors" can be chosen as Palette Swaps in the Budokai Tenkaichi games.
    • The full-color re-release of the manga alternates between showing young Goku's first gi as either a pale orange or deep blue.
    • Minor character Ranfan (who appears in the first tournament) is a redhead in the manga, but has violet hair in the anime. Her clothing color scheme also changed from her wearing a pink top and gray pants, to a navy blue top and green pants.
  • In the Elfen Lied manga, Nana and Mariko have purple and blonde hair, respectively. In the anime, their hair is pink.
    • A subtle example, but Lucy's hair was very pink in the manga, while it was a more reddish in the anime.
  • Several characters' hair colors in Excel Saga changed when it was turned into an anime. Excel's hair changed from blonde to orange, Hyatt's went from brown to dark blue, Il Palazzo's went from pale green to pale violet, and Dr. Kabapu's went from green to blond.
  • In Toei's anime version of Fist of the North Star many of the characters have their hair colors changed from the manga, with Yuria's hair being changed from black to red (violet during the Shin arc), Raoh's from blond to black, and Rei's from black to light green. Justified with Amiba, whose hair was changed from black to white since Toki (the man he is supposed to be impersonating) is supposed to have white hair due to his radiation exposure (this fact was only revealed in the manga after the Amiba arc was over). The later anime versions by North Stars Pictures reverted back to their manga colors.
    • Most of the video game adaptations tend to stick with the manga colors for the characters. Even Amiba has his manga colors in the Dynasty Warriors spinoff Hokuto Musou.
    • An exception was made with Yuria and Mamiya, who both use their anime hair colors in Hokuto Musou (purple and red respectively, although Yuria's hair was only violet during the Southern Cross arc).
  • The three Mortar Headds used by Juba & his goons at the end of The Five Star Stories film had their paintjobs inexplcably changed in the anime movie based on the manga. In colour illustrations, the Hellmine was depicted as white with blue highlights, while the film version is dark pink (this may be because the white version looks extremely similar to Zeta Gundam's Qubeley, which is not surprising, considering they're both designed by Mamoru Nagano). The Barunja & Devoncha, meanwhile, went from gunmetal grey to two different, similarly loud colour schemes, probably because they thought the originals looked too boring.
  • Tohru from Fruits Basket has brown eyes in the manga and blue eyes in the anime.
    • Also, everyone had some change made: Yuki went from silver hair and eyes to dark gray hair and dark purple eyes, Kyo went from orange eyes to dark brown eyes, Kagura went from dark brown eyes to grey eyes, Momiji's and Hiro's eyes switched to a slightly darker shade of brown, Haru's eyes went from grey to dark brown, Ayame's eyes went from light grey to yellow-green, and Kisa went from yellow-orange hair and eyes to strawberry-blondish-orange-ish hair and dark brown eyes.
  • Fullmetal Alchemist:
    • Al and Hohenheim have dark blond hair in the 2003 anime adaptation. Al's eyes are also brown instead of the gold they are meant to be.
    • In the 2003 anime, Kimbley has gold eyes. In the manga and Brotherhood, they are blue.
    • Envy's hair is shown to be black in the manga, but is green in the first anime. In Brotherhood it is almost black, but appears to have a greenish tint.
    • Winry's bandanna is red in the first anime and green in the manga and Brotherhood. She gets a green bandanna in the very last episodes of the first anime though.
    • In the manga and Brotherhood all Ishvalans have white hair and red eyes. In the 2003 anime almost all Ishvalans have brown or black hair, with the exception of Scar and elders.
    • Winry's parents both have blond hair in the manga. In the 2003 anime Winry's mom is a brunette and her dad's hair is a darker brown.
  • In the Full Metal Panic! manga, Sōsuke is usually depicted as having purple hair. For the anime, this was changed to a more typical black. Ironically, Kaname's black hair in the original books was made blue.
  • In Full Moon o Sagashite, Mitsuki has black hair and gold/blue eyes in the manga but the anime changed them both to dark brown. Her mother and grandmother went from blonde to brunettes, Takuto's hair went from black to grey, Madoka went from purple to dark red, and Aoi went from green-haired to black-haired. Meroko's shinigami outfit also changed from black to red but this change was chosen by Arina herself. Only Takuto, Meroko, and Izumi were able to keep their original eye colors. Everyone else's were changed.
  • In the adaptation of Fushigi Yuugi from a manga to anime, many of the characters' hair and eye colours changed from realistic to... well, not. In the colour arts the characters generally either had dark brown hair (shaded in the manga) or ginger (not shaded) with the odd blond thrown in for good measure. They also all, apart from Nakago, had dark eyes. In the anime, these were changed to various shades of blue, red, brown, purple and green. They generally had matching eyes too.
    • In fact, it's easier to list the characters whose hair/eyes haven't changed than those on which it has!
  • Ga Rei Zero takes a lot of artistic license with Kagura: the original Ga-Rei manga depicts her with blue-black hair and dark-brown eyes, Zero gives her short brown hair and clear blue eyes. The difference is immediately noticeable, especially when the anime uses certain scenes from the manga.
  • Neko Musume from GeGeGe no Kitaro has changed colors at least three times. She was originally depicted with black hair, then switched to a dark brown in the 80s, a purple in the 90s, and was a redhead in the 2007 version.
  • Hakuro from Ginga Nagareboshi Gin was black with white markings in the manga, but was changed into light brown with white markings in the anime. Officially, at least – he's somewhat infamous for being frequently colored incorrectly, including being completely blue in one scene.
    • Tesshin aka Chibi was different shades of brown in the aforementioned anime, but colored images from the manga as well as the anime of the sequel revealed him to be gray and white in color.
    • Riki was red and white in the manga, but was colored brown and tan in the anime.
    • Retsuga was originally colored brown and white. Years later, another colored image of him was made, and this time he was blue and white.
  • In the Gravitation manga, Shuichi's hair is black (except for when he temporarily dyes it blond in later volumes), and it's safe to assume that his eyes are a normal black or brown. The OVA gives him dark red-brown hair and green eyes, and the later anime adaptation tops it by giving him bright pink hair and purple eyes more representative of his hyper personality.
    • Some of the covers for the manga volumes however, give him various different hair colors, including pink and violet.
  • In the Gungrave anime, Brandon has grey/silver hair after being exposed to necrolyzation. In the games he's depicted as having black hair even after his revival, along with a darker skin tone. Both versions have yellow/amber eyes though.
  • For whatever reason Angelica from Gunslinger Girl has brown hair and green eyes in Teatrino. While it does make her look more different from Claes, her manga version has black hair and dark eyes like the BONE's version.
  • Seras Victoria from Hellsing received this treatment for the TV series. On the cover of volume two of the manga, she is shown with blonde hair, a yellow-ish uniform, and blue eyes. In the anime, she has strawberry-blonde hair, a blue uniform, and red eyes after she was turned. However, the Ultimate OVA series uses the manga coloration, save for the uniform being a darker yellow-brown shade. Made even more confusing in that the original serialized covers couldn't decide on her coloring at all, and would alternate randomly.
    • Maxwell and Pip have blond hair in the manga, but it was changed to silver and brown respectively in the anime.
    • Doc and Major have metallic silver hair and clothing in the manga, but have white outfits and blonde hair in Ultimate.
    • Rip Van's eye color went from red to piercing blue.
    • Integra's hair is closer to being white-blonde in the TV series.
    • Anderson's hair is silver in the manga, but blond in the anime and OVA.
  • Tons in InuYasha. For example, Sesshomaru's kimono has a pale purple pattern in the manga, which the anime changes to red. A similar change happened to Kagura's kimono.
    • They also changed Kagome's eyes from green to brown.
  • JoJo's Bizarre Adventure
    • The OVA seemed to decide that hair which blended into the main character's hat was about the extent of weirdness that the main cast would have, so supporting character Noriyaki Kakyoin had his hair recolored from hot pink to natural brown. At least he kept his side hair.
    • The manga never seems to make up its mind as to the 'true' hair and clothing colors of the characters, however. Giorno can be wearing bright pink in one illustration, and black in another.
    • Meanwhile, most of the main characters have a listed canon eye color which doesn't always show up in color. Jotaro, for example, has "slightly green" eyes, but the OVA and video games have them as either blue or brown.
    • Jonathan's hair color revolves between bright blue (anime), green (manga cover) or black (games).
    • It's been established that there are no canon color schemes except for the golden hair of Dio and Giorno (and in some illustrations it's white). The new TV anime even switches color schemes mid-episode.
    • Araki sometimes give blond characters(like Dio and Giorno) green hair in some of his newer artworks.
  • In the light novels for Kagerou Project Ayano's hair is said on multiple occasions to be black, but in the anime it's a medium brown color.
    • Momo's eyes are also changed from orange to black, possibly to give her more resemblance to her brother.
  • Tomoe, from Kamisama Kiss, is depicted as having Supernatural Gold Eyes in the manga, but in the anime has Purple Eyes.
  • In Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne, Maron has light brown hair in the manga but darker brown in the anime and Chiaki goes from light blue hair to a darker shade. (Arina has also drawn him with blond hair for some manga images but it seems his true color is light blue.)
  • Touko Aozaki of Kara no Kyoukai originally had short blue hair in the novels, but when the series was adapted to film, her hair was changed to red and long to make her resemble her sister Aoko, and subsequent artwork has always shown Touko with red hair. Her original character design was then used for Natalia Kaminski in Fate/Zero as a Mythology Gag.
  • In the Kinnikuman anime, Robin Mask goes from silver to blue, Ashuraman from blue to a normal skintone, etc. A other example is the Kinnikuman Great disguise, which is dark red in the manga, but black in the anime, giving the wearer a distinct Kentucky Minstrel look, which is probably why the Kinnikuman Nisei anime went with the manga colours (though amusingly, Robin's son Kevin uses Robin's old anime colours).
    • Robin Mask also wore dark blue tights under his armor in the anime, making his skin appear blue. Kinnikuman almost always wore red trunks and boots in the anime, while in the manga they were usually white. Brocken Jr. had whitish skin and a dark green/black outfit in the anime but normal skin and green in the manga. A majority of the characters had different outfit and/or skin coloring in the anime.
  • Not a complete adaptation dye job, but the Kodomo No Jikan mangaka can't seem to make up her mind on the hair colors of Rin and Mimi. Both have had orange-red, sandy brown, strawberry blonde, and light blonde as a hair color at some point. The anime manages to settle on blonde for Rin, but Mimi's hair still fluxes from light brown to orange-brown to some sort of pinkish brown.
    • Houin-sensei changed from blonde in the manga to a redhead in the anime.
    • In later colored manga chapters, Houin-sensei's hair is a more orange color, between the original and anime colouration.
  • Manami and Hatori from Life both have blonde hair, which isn't exactly common for Japanese girls. The Dorama gives both of them dark brown hair.
  • Misao from Lucky Star has black hair in the manga, compared to her iconic brown appearance in the anime.
  • Lupin III's jacket color is famously inconsistent. It's red in the original manga, second TV series, and most films and television specials, but green in the first and fourth series and a few OVAs and pink in the third series. This becomes a plot point in Lupin III: Red vs. Green.
  • Fuu Hououji, one of the Power Trio from Magic Knight Rayearth, has blonde hair in the original manga. All the adaptations (anime, OVA, and video game) give her light brown hair instead.
  • In the first season of Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha, Precia Testarossa's hair was a sort of violet-tinted grey. In several pieces of official movie art but not the movie itself, it's very much pure, dark violet.
  • Mahou Sensei Negima! has to be the king of this trope. The manga, the first two anime series, and the early OVAs (unlicensed in the US) all use different hair colours. Given the size of the cast and the fact that a significant portion of them change each time, listing all the changes is not feasible here. In fact, we had to give this series its own trope page!
  • Medaka Box seems to be going in this direction, at least for the more minor characters - in the very first episode, Moji's hair went from being brown to bright blue.
  • In the Mermaid Melody Pichi Pichi Pitch anime, transformed Rina has medium-green hair, and Seira and reformed Sara always have orange. In the manga, mermaid Rina's hair is practically neon, and the orange ladies have dusty brown hair as humans.
  • In the Miracle Girls manga, Toni and Mika have dirty/sandy blond hair, while in the anime it's brown. Chris also has pink hair in the manga, but brown in the anime.
  • A clothing example can be found in Naruto with Tenten, whose one shirt was blue in the manga but pink in the anime.
    • Kiba sported a red jacket in the early manga too.
    • In a non-human example, the Three-Tailed Beast went from sea green to gray in the anime.
    • When Gaara is first introduced in the manga, his hair looks and is described as being brown, but it later changes to red. Konan has grayish blue eyes with a gold tint in the manga, but her hologram in the Shippuden anime has deep amber eyes. Also, in part 1 of the manga, on the coloured manga covers, Sakura's headband, shorts, and shoes are green, and she sometimes wears green nail-polish and eye-liner. In the anime, her headband, shorts, and shoes are blue.
      • Sakura actually wore several different shorts in the manga, varying in both color and length. The anime had her constantly wear the same black slightly-above-the-knees shorts all the time.
    • The Rinnegan suffered this for a long time in the anime, though this was due to a lack of colored manga pages for it rather than any sort of intentional choice. Once it was shown in the manga all anime appearances after that were changed to match it. The lack of colored manga pages for the Rinnegan also meant it took a very long time before it was clear that it looked different from Kurenai's unusual but non-powered eyes.
    • A partial example is the Rasengan: Word of God is that he's never decided upon one color for it to be (artbooks and colored covers have shown it to be red and yellow) but in the anime the basic one's color is a bright, glowing blue and the Rasenshuriken is bright glowing white.
      • Naruto's chakra has been described as orange and a lot of colored art shows Rasengan as orange under most circumstances (it changes red but that's due to the technique he's using).
      • Relatively early in the manga, when he first began to train with Jiraiya, when describing his own chakra Naruto stated that he felt that it was Yellow, or at least that was the colour he associated with it. This was changed to blue in the anime. However, when describing the Kyuubi's chakra, he stated that it felt red, which was shown consistently in both manga and anime.
    • Kushina's maternity dress and overall color scheme is drastically different than the manga version. Although, it was understandable as it was in a similar case with the Rinnegan. No manga colors. Kushina's hair in the manga is bright red. The anime darkens it. Her dress is green with a white shirt. The anime changes it completely to a white dress and blue shirt. Although, why the anime changed it that way when it was obvious that Kushina's shirt was left white and the manga gives her dress a completely black shade (meaning it should have a darker color) will never be known....
    • A mild example but, at least pre-timeskip, Sakura is always shown with makeup in the manga. In the anime she wears no makeup.
    • Sakon was given deep blue hair in one early color illustration by Kishimoto, but has greyish hair in the anime and other illustrations.
    • More minor examples include Hinata's hair color (dark blue in the the manga, black with a slight blue tinge in the anime) and Ino's hair color (yellow blond in the manga, platinum blond in the anime).
  • In the Natsume Yuujinchou manga, Natsume Takashi has white hair and silver eyes. The anime changes both of these to gold.
  • In Neon Genesis Evangelion, Asuka's hair is red; in the manga adaptation it is strawberry blonde, while her Rebuild of Evangelion counterpart is depicted with auburn hair. Also, Shinji goes from dark-brown hair and blue eyes (anime) to black hair and brown eyes (manga).
  • One Piece:
    • Bartholomew Kuma was originally introduced in the manga wearing an orange outfit. In the anime, he wears black. The next time Kuma showed up in a color page in the manga, the color of his outfit had been changed to be closer to the anime version.
    • Doflamingo was initially depicted with a darker red and black clothing scheme in the anime, but later it was changed to the manga's orange and white coloring.
    • Crocodile's new outfit in the anime is depicted as consisting of a brown suit, indigo scarf, and a dark green overcoat, while in the manga his scarf is green and both his suit and overcoat appear to be black.
    • A less noticeable example in the anime involves characters' eye colors, as Oda very rarely, if ever, colors them in. Some examples include Robin having blue eyes in the anime (brown in the manga), Mihawk having yellow eyes to reinforce the Animal Theme Naming, and Hancock having navy blue ones.
  • The anime version of Ouran High School Host Club changed Tamaki's light brown hair to blond, probably to emphasize his French heritage. The manga later followed suit.
    • The twins' hair also changed from brown to light red.
  • Sasame of Pretear is blond in the manga, but a White Hair, Black Heart in the anime. Since in the anime he ends up betraying the Knights and siding with the Dark Magical Girl, they might have changed his hair to fit the trope. Interestingly, his eye color also went from brown to purple, which may have to do with the above spoiler as well. A lesser instance is Hayate's hair going from black to dark blue (coupled with hairstyle change); the new color probably could still count as "stylized black", but then there's a much obviously black-haired character (Mikage) present in the show...
  • The anime for The Prince of Tennis has a couple cases of this, notably Atobe Keigo. He was (stereotypically?) blond-haired and blue-eyed in the manga, made to draw attention to the fact he was raised in England. This was changed to inexplicable purple hair and grey eyes in the anime.
  • The anime Princess Princess has a bad case of this. In the anime the originally black-haired main character Tooru has blue hair, brown-haired Mikoto and Akira have respectively pink and green hair. The only character in the main quartet untouched is the blond-haired Yujiro.
  • In Psychic Detective Yakumo, in both manga adaptations and the novels, Haruka has matching brown hair and eyes. In the anime adaptation, she has pink hair and light purple eyes. Her hairstyle also varies between adaptations.
  • In Ranma ½, female Ranma has red hair in the anime, but there once was an enormous Internet Backdraft over whether or not this applied to the mostly black-and-white manga. Fanciful multicolored-covers and art work aside, fans in favor of the idea rationalized that since curses copy their original victims, it was reasonable that Ranma's curse had just involved a redheadnote . Fans against the idea rationalized it occurred for the same reason other Takahashi characters got palette changes: to simply to make both versions of Ranma immediately distinguishable to the viewing audience.
    • Traditionally, the Yin Yang is represented not as White and Black, but RED and Black. Yang, the Black, is the masculine, while Yin, the Red, is the Feminine. This was probably one reason why Red was chosen over any color for female Ranma.
    • The other girls also had a case of this. Akane's hair was portrayed as merely black or brown in color art, while the anime gave her dark blue hair. Likewise, Shampoo and Ukyou's hair were both originally just a straight black on the covers. Though this eventually shifted with some cover artwork, all hair within the manga was portrayed as a straight black throughout.
      • In the first anime opening, Shampoo was shown with deep green hair and blue eyes. When she actually appeared in the anime however, her hair alternated between being blue and violet, while her eyes were red. Later OVAs would settle on her hair being violet.
      • While the anime settled on giving Ukyou dark brown hair, the colorists were unable to settle on blue or brown for her eyes. The 2008 Shonen Sunday OVA complicates this further by giving her green eyes.
    • Kodachi Kuno was initially shown to have teal hair and eyes in the first opening sequence. When she actually appeared, her hair was changed to be black and her eyes were gray.
      • Her leotard was also depicted as black in the manga, but was green in the TV series, and purple in the OVA series. The aforementioned opening sequence had it colored orange in one shot, while a pale blue in all other scenes.
    • Hinako Ninomiya was given black hair and brown eyes in the manga, though her hair was sometimes colored blue in other illustrations. Her anime counterpart has brown hair and blue eyes.
  • In Revolutionary Girl Utena, Utena started in the manga as a blonde, but was given pink hair in the anime and later manga volume covers and illustrations. Utena's eyes also vary between being brown or blue in the illustrations of her as a blonde, while the anime and later illustrations settle on blue eyes to go with her pink hair.
    • A few other characters had some different colors as well, albeit not as extreme. Touga's hair was black (aside from his front locks, which were colored red), as well as Anthy and Akio's (though Anthy sometimes seemed to have brown hair). Juri also appeared as a blonde, and the blue-haired Miki began as a brunet before Chiho Saito promptly tweaked his colors to match the anime. Meanwhile, in the movie adaptation, Miki's sister Kozue's hair becomes a light teal, whereas in the anime, it was indigo. Finally Kanae's hair in concept art is a dinghy yellow-green color, while in the anime itself, it often is rendered as a very light blonde.
      • Anthy also originally had brown eyes in the manga, but they became green in the anime. Miki and Juri had brown eyes in Saito's early color illustrations, while both have blue eyes in the anime and later illustrations.
    • The manga makes it a point to state that Utena's school uniform is pink (though she insists it's "rose"), which it does appear as in early color illustrations. She later receives a black uniform, after the original is damaged in battle. In the anime, her uniform is always a black/navy color.
    • Anthy's Rose Bride dress was white in the original manga color illustrations, but Saito would also later change it (to red) to match with the anime color choices.
    • There was even an Omake that Saito made in the manga where she's afraid when Ikuhara approached her seriously. She thought that he was going to say the anime wasn't going to be made after all, but he was just asking her about colors (He picked the color she didn't choose anyway.).
  • Sailor Moon is quite puzzling in this respect.
    • Almost no one has just one hair color in the manga and accompanying artbooks, merely a most frequently depicted hue. Usagi has blonde, silver-white and occasionally even pink hair. Chibiusa is most often pink, but rarely silver-white. Rei switches from purple to black to the occasional red. Ami is always blue, but it differs in shades (and is heavily implied to be a stylized black). Makoto switches from pink/strawberry red to brown and the occasional green (and in one piece where each girl has brown or blonde hair, blonde). Haruka switches from white to dirty blonde. Michiru is usually green or blue or something in between. Luna is either black, blue, or purple (likewise, Diana switches from light purple to gray). Mamoru goes from dark green to dark blue to dark purple to black, and rarely lavender. Ikuko goes from pink to light brown (in color illustrations for the first chapter) to purple and blue. Hotaru is black or purple ranging from a medium shade to almost black, and rarely brown.
    • In the manga, Usagi/Sailor Moon's hair is most often pale blonde and changes to silver-white as her past incarnation Princess Serenity and future self Neo-Queen Serenity. (Naoko Takeuchi had wanted Moon silver-haired in all forms, to be distinct from blonde Sailor Venus, but after her editor nixed the idea, Takeuchi used the silver/white for Moon's Serenity forms) In The '90s anime, it's always golden blonde.
    • Haruka/Sailor Uranus' hair in the manga is most often white-blonde, but dark, sandy blonde in the nineties anime.
    • Makoto/Sailor Jupiter had pink/strawberry red hair in early manga art, but in both the nineties anime, (and, recursively, latter manga art) it's brown.
    • Usagi's brother Shingo and the school nerd Umino are either blond or brown-haired in Takeuchi's art, with the nineties anime settling on the latter hair color for both. Motoki's girlfriend Reika is either blonde or pink/strawberry red-haired in the manga, but has dark auburn hair in the nineties anime.
    • Chibiusa's school friend Momoko is an intercontinuity example. Manga illustrations show her with pinkish or purple hair. In early 90's anime appearances, her hair was brown, but in the fourth season it became purple with no explanation, yet didn't match the manga. Her eyes also changed from a light blue to bright purple.
  • In Continuity Reboot anime Sailor Moon Crystal:
    • Generally Downplayed, as secondary and tertiary characters have had their hair and eye colors mildly to moderately desaturated as compared to the 90's anime, (and sometimes Naoko Takeuchi's colorized manga and artbook art) in keeping with the series tendency towards a pastel, watercolor-influenced palette.
    • A straighter example occurs in the Title Sequence with Queen Serenity, who no longer has her typical Mystical White Hair, but is blonde like her daughter, (the reincarnated title character) exaggerating their already Strong Family Resemblance.
      • This turned out to be a mistake and Queen Serenity was inexplicably shown with her usual white-silvery hair in the Opening Episode 6 onward and when she was seen in the episode themselves.
    • While she hasn't officially appeared in the reboot anime yet, Princess Serenity retains the blond hair she had in the old anime, despite it being silver-white in the manga, as shown in the anime's Ending Gekkou (despite not seeing the face) and the full Sailor Moon MV of the opening song.
  • Saint Seiya
    • Almost all the Gold Saints were blond-haired in the manga. For the sake of variety, the anime changed most of them, albeit half of them got blue hair for some reason, thus not helping any. Thanks, Toei.
    • Some of the main characters. Everybody had normal hair colors in the manga, but some of them got crazy 80's rainbow-hair when the anime adaption came. The most dramatic were brothers Pheonix Ikki and Andromeda Shun, both of whom had brown hair in the manga. In the anime, Ikki's hair is blue and Shun's is kelly green. One could say that their overall color change may be based on a famous pair of brothers. Looking at the latter duo nowadays, this may be true.
  • Saiyuki has numerous examples, partially caused by the Gensoumaden anime series starting relatively early in the manga run, with the character designs still being worked on:
    • Gojyo's hair and eyes are supposed to be the color of blood (a sign of him being a Half-Human Hybrid), but the Gensoumaden anime made it lighter and closer to magenta, despite it still being described as "blood-red" in the dialogue. Later adaptations corrected it to a more fitting shade of red.
    • Gojyo's past incarnation Kenren has the same magenta hair color in Gensoumaden, which make no sense plot-wise, but is convenient for the viewer. The Gaiden OVA properly inherits the manga's black.
    • Hakkai's eyes are usually shown as green in the colored manga illustrations; this was carried over to the Gensoumaden anime series, but the later Reload/Gunlock anime and the Burial OVA show them as dark blueish-gray. This change apparently went recursive, as some of Minekura's more recent images use the same blueish color instead of green.
      • Hakkai's vine-like youkai markings alternate between various shades of green (manga), dark red (Reload anime) and near-black (Burial OVA).
    • Yaone has black hair and matching eyes in the manga. Gensoumaden anime changed her hair to bright purple and her eyes to amber (although the Reload anime then corrected both to dark blue which probably counts as stylized black).
    • Lirin went from being blonde with purple eyes in the manga to being a green-eyed redhead in Gensoumaden. (Again, the change was reversed in the Reload/Gunlock anime.)
    • Zakuro is blond in the manga, but became purple-haired in the anime.
    • Gyokumen Koushu's hair color in the manga is closer to silver-gray; the anime adaptations pushed it to the two opposite extremes, with it being colored either teal (Gensoumaden) or purple (Reload).
    • Koumyou Sanzo is supposed to be blond, as shown in the manga and later OVA series, but in Gensoumaden his hair is light brown.
  • School Rumble's manga makes it clear that the majority of the cast have natural, traditional black hair, yet the anime adaptation decided to give every other character different shades CLOSE to black, ranging from dark green (Karen) to blue (Mikoto).
  • In the original Science Ninja Team Gatchaman, Jun had hair that shifted from being a deep green to a more blackish or brownish color at times, to where some fans assumed that it was simply meant to be so black that it only SEEMED green. In the sequels and later official artwork, it was brightened to an emerald shade. The OVA version made in the '90s opted to give her mousy brown hair, while in the animated NTT ads, it was practically chartreuse.
    • The concept art for the OVA version also shows that they initially considered giving her blue hair before settling on the brown, along with blue eyes.
    • Joe's hair has varied between being a dark, dirty blond/light brown shade, medium brown, auburn, and a very deep brown through the series and related materials.
    • Ryu had dark brown hair in the original anime series, but the '90s OVA gave him two-toned dyed hair, with it being purple on top and blond on the sides.
    • In the 2013 live-action film by Nikkatsu, Jun's hair is short and brown, while Ken and Joe have the dark hair natural to their actors. Ryu meanwhile, displays dyed red hair.
    • Berg Katse/Berg Katze had dark blond hair in the original series, but somewhat lighter blond hair in the OVA. But his counterpart in Gatchaman Crowds has dark PINK hair.
  • Saburo from Sgt. Frog made his TV debut as a minor character in Seven of Seven. As DJ 623 (Mutsumi), his hair is bright blue, but in the Sgt. Frog anime, his hair is whitish-grey.
  • Kiddy Phenil of Silent Möbius has green hair in the manga and movies, but turns into a redhead for the TV series.
  • Zelgadis Graywords of the Slayers anime has light blue skin (as he is a chimera), lilac-colored hair, and navy blue eyes; in the original novels that the show was adapted from, his skin is said to be more blue-green, his hair is silvery, and his eyes are purple. The Non-Serial Movie Slayers Premium featured the novel-designed version of him. There is also a small bridge of stone that is stuck between his left eyelids in his novel design that isn't seen in the anime. Interestingly, he's an odd case of Art Evolution where current art of him matches his anime design.
    • Lina the protagonist began as a brunette in the Light Novel series; for the older anime series and later books, it became a coppery color, and currently, it's a very bright red.
    • Xellos the demonic priest and Princess Amelia have black hair in the novels with stylized purple highlights, while anime adaptations make their hair straight-up purple.
  • In the original Soul Eater manga, Liz is a blonde. In the anime adaptation, her hair is changed to a light brown.
  • In the Super Robot Wars Original Generation anime, several characters (Bian Zoldark especially) got more realistic hair colors (black instead of blue in his case), and Tenzan Nakajima's hair was muted from bright green to a neutral brown. In the OVA, the colors went back to normal, even Bian's is blue in a flashback.
    • Bian is an odd case anyway, as even the games can't agree on what his hair colour is. The NES Super Robot Wars 2 had him as a redhead, changed to black in Complete Box (a PSX remake of SRW 2, 3, and EX), then to blue in the GBA Original Generation games and Alpha 3. Then they changed it back to black for Divine Wars and the PS2 remake Original Generations.
    • Another one from The Inspectors: Ratsel's shades were hexagonal in the anime compared to the oblong ones in the games.
  • In the anime of Sunday Without God, Ai's hair is a darker shade of gold than in the original novels, and Alice's eyes are purple instead of red, likely to contrast with Dee's purple hair and red eyes.
  • In the light novels of Suzumiya Haruhi, Haruhi's hair is black, Yuki's is gray, and Mikuru is a brunette. In the anime, Yuki's hair is grayish-purple, and Mikuru is a redhead. Both ofthese are close enough to the ones they are supposed to have that it could be seen as a simple stylistic choice. Haruhi's hair, however, just full on changed from black to dark brown.
  • The summary episode of Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann has concept art that depicts Nia with strawberry blonde hair.
  • Tenjho Tenge's Aya had her hair go from being very dark brown in the manga, to a light ginger-blonde in the anime.
    • Emi Isuzu started out with deep red hair and eyes in the manga, but has bright pink hair and eyes in the anime.
  • Tokyo Mew Mew is a complicated case. In the original manga, the girls' hair always matches their "signature color", transformed or not. In the anime, the colors were changed slightly towards the darker and less outrageous shades for the girls' regular forms, changing to their much brighter "signature colors" as they transform into their Mew Mew forms. The most noticeable case is Ichigo: pink-haired in both forms in the manga, but has dark red hair and Brown Eyes in her regular form in the anime, which only changes to pink when she becomes Mew Ichigo. Go figure.
    • Aoyama's original design had blue hair and eyes, but his anime design has black hair and dark brown eyes.
  • Milly from Trigun was originally a blonde ditz in the manga, but was changed to a brunette in the anime. She's still a ditz though.
    • In the anime Legato has blue hair and gold eyes and in the manga has deep purple hair and bronze colored eyes.
    • There's a variation for Vash—in the manga, his hair starts to turn black as his power drains. This is absent from the anime.
  • In Urusei Yatsura, Lum's hair was rainbow-colored in the manga. The anime made it green, and later OVAs lightened it to a bright teal. Heavily subject to Adaptation Displacement.
    • Lum also originally had gold eyes in the manga, but the anime (and later Takahashi art) changed them to be blue.
    • Her former fiance Rei had rainbow-colored hair in some early manga artwork, but it's dark green in the anime.
    • Ten has green hair in the anime and most art, but it appears blond or a much lighter green in some other early manga illustrations.
    • All four of "Lum's Stormtroopers" had black hair on the artwork for the second volume on the manga. In the anime, Chibi wound up having light brown hair while the other three were given dark brown.
    • Shinobu's hair shifts between being a fiery red or brown in the manga color images, while the anime settled on giving her dark brown.
  • In the Video Girl Ai manga, Ai's hair is blond (as seen in the covers). In the OVA, they changed it to grey. And not grey like silver, grey like lead.
  • Wandering Son has eye variations. Everyone has either black eyes or brown eyes in the manga but the anime changes them and outright gives some unnatural tones. For example: Takatsuki's black eyes (which are meant to be stylized dark brown) are a light golden brown, the Nitori's siblings mother goes from having black eyes to blue, Makoto went from having brown eyes to black eyes, Yuki's eyes are brown in the manga but red in the anime, and Saori goes from having black eyes to brown.
    • The manga gives their uniforms pastel colors like blue and green. The anime gives the males standard black gakuran and the girls blue-and-brown uniforms.
  • In the Wedding Peach manga, Yuri (Angel Lily) had blonde/dirty blonde hair, but it was changed to brown in the anime. Hinaguki (Angel Daisy) also seemed to have blonde hair, which became green in the anime. Potamos's blonde hair was changed to purple, too.
  • The Ame-Warashi has blue hair in the ×××HOLiC manga, but it was changed into red for the anime. Particularly disconcerting since she's the spirit of the rain and all. On a subtler note, Watanuki and Domeki have the exact same skin tone in the manga, but the anime made them much paler and darker respectively.
  • In Your Lie in April, Tsubaki is shown to have bluish hair on the cover of volume 3 of the manga, while the anime gives her brown hair. Also, Kousei says his eyes are brown early in chapter 1 (and in the first episode of the anime), but all of the covers and the anime depict his eyes as blue.
  • Seto Kaiba of Yu-Gi-Oh! fame had green hair in the original Toei anime, which was then changed to brown for Yu-Gi-Oh Duel Monsters as it was in the manga. His eyes also changed from yellow to blue.
    • "Screw the rules, I have green hair!"
      • Perhaps as an homage to this, the anime's filler villain, Noah looks very much like a younger version of Kaiba's old design.
    • Likewise, Anzu's/Tea's eyes change from brown (first series anime) to blue (second series anime) as it was in the manga.
      • And Bakura has white hair and blue eyes in the manga, but the Toei anime gave him blue hair and green eyes, and the succeeding anime gave him brown eyes.
      • The red parts of Yugi's hair and his eyes in the manga are more of a magenta color in the second series anime. Though Yugi's eye color sometimes changes in the colored manga illustrations, it's red most of the time.
    • The Black Magician wore a dark blue, somewhat blackish suit in the manga, had pale skin, and yellow hair, but his suit and hair were changed to purple in the second series anime, for some odd reason. The Toei movie gets the manga color scheme somewhat right. Likewise, the second series anime makes the Blue-Eyes White Dragon BLUE when it's supposed to be white, and another rare moment where the Toei anime actually gets the color right.
    • Inverted in the Yu-Gi-Oh! Reshef of Destruction video game, where Pegasus retains his blue eyes from the manga, despite the game being based on the anime, where his eyes were brown.
  • The color of Zatch's/Gash's mantle in the manga version of Zatch Bell! is green or sometimes yellow. In the Anime, it's always blue.

    Card Games 
  • In the Magi-Nation game (video and card), Kid Hero Tony Jones was a blond. In the cartoon show, he inexplicably went black-haired.

    Comic Books 
  • Lana Lang and Lois Lane change hair colors for Smallville. Kristin Kreuk has dark brown hair instead of red, Erica Durance has brownish blond hair instead of black.
  • Batman usually has a lighter shade of hair when he's played by a real actor.
    • Likewise, in The Dark Knight, Harvey Dent, who is a brunet in the comics, is played by blond Aaron Eckhart.
    • Vicki Vale is normally shown as a redhead in the comics, but was played by the very blond Kim Basinger in the original Batman.
    • While Catwoman is traditionally depicted as having dark black hair, the extremely blonde Michelle Pfeiffer played her in Batman Returns. This appearance was originally used for Batman: The Animated Series since the series was intended to tie-in with Batman Returns. However, when the show switched networks and art styles, Catwoman returned to her black hair color and the change was even explained away as a result of a dye job because her original hair product had been derived from animal testing.
      • Another canon explanation in the 'Contagion' series showed that as a criminal, Selina Kyle constantly cuts, dyes and restyles her hair to try and hide her identity.
      • Batman: The Animated Series saw Killer Croc's skin go from green to grey, though when it came back as The New Batman Adventures, it returned to the green.
    • In Batman & Robin, red-headed Barbara is a blond played by Alicia Silverstone. This is also a different Barbara.
      • Barbara has short black hair in Batman but wears a wig as Batgirl. Considering she was created for the show, it might be an inversion.
    • An odd example within one medium: The second Robin, Jason Todd. Pre-Crisis, he had red hair (kind of strawberry blond), permanently dyed black. Post-Crisis, he had naturally black hair. After coming back from the dead, he started out with black hair with a white streak, but now has dark red hair with a white streak, since the dye has apparently grown out. Now with the reboot, he's back to black again.
    • Harley Quinn in Suicide Squad... sort of. She's still blonde—but like in Batman: Arkham City the tips of her pig tails are dyed, though the black was replaced with blue.
    • Birds of Prey followed the example set by Returns and B: TAS of having Catwoman's blnode. While averted in the series proper, in the original, unaired pilot, Harley Quinn has black hair as opposed to her classic blonde hair.
  • Matt and Hay Lin's grandmother from W.I.T.C.H. both got black hair in the cartoon adaptation of the comics (whereas they usually have brown and grey hair respectively).
  • Marvel's version of the goddess Sif has black hair, rather than gold; this was because the myth of Loki shearing her head in her sleep and having to replace it was changed in this version. Like in the original mythology, he commissioned the dwarves to forge new hair, but didn't pay them what he originally promised. Thus, instead of golden hair, they made black hair to spite him. (Fortunately, Thor thought Sif looked even more beautiful as a brunette, so it all ended well.)
  • Felicity Smoake has black hair in the Firestorm comics, but is played by a blonde actress in Arrow.
  • Barry Allen, a blue-eyed blonde, is played by brown-haired, green-eyed Grant Gustin in Arrow and The Flash. He was also played by the dark haired John Wesley Shipp on the 90's Flash series. The latter series also had Tina McGee go from black hair to brown.
  • Sharon Carter has red hair in the Ultimate universe, rather than blond.
  • Though her hair changes to its traditional black color when in her Madame Masque persona, Whitney Stane has blond hair in Iron Man: Armored Adventures.
    • Abigail Brand also has black hair instead of her trademark green.
  • John Constantine was originally blond, and specifically modeled after Sting (and more specifically, Sting as he appeared in the movie Quadrophenia). In the movie adaptation, he is played by dark-haired Keanu Reeves.
  • Yukio sports natural black hair in the Wolverine mini-series but has dyed red hair in The Wolverine.
    • Viper also has blond hair rather than green or black.
  • The Hellboy franchise did this to Liz Sherman: Red hair in the comics, black in the live action movies, and some shade of brown in the animated movies.
    • Abe Sapien also received a color change, going from green-skinned in the comics to blue-skinned in the movies.
      • Highly likely changed to allow the Green Screen process to work.
  • Hawk originally had blond hair in the G.I. Joe comics, but was given black hair in the animated series to distinguish him from Duke, the other blond-haired G.I. Joe leader (who actually appeared before Hawk in the animated series). The toyline followed suit by giving every Hawk action figure released afterward black or brown hair.
  • Superman: The Animated Series had Green Lantern Kyle Rayner's hair changed from black to light brown - because he was a Composite Character with some of Hal Jordan's aspects.
  • Iceman went from brown hair to blond when animated for Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends and Wolverine and the X-Men.
  • Johnny Storm went from blond to brunette when they brought Fantastic Four to film. Ben Grimm went from brunette to bald.
  • Aldrich Killian had black hair in the comics, but blond in Iron Man 3.
  • Lex Luthor's female bodyguard Mercy had brown hair when she was first introduced in the DCAU, but was given blond hair when she was brought over into the comics.
  • Storm's eyes are blue, but in the X-Men movies, they're brown because Halle Berry refused to wear contacts. Notably she's the only exception. Sabretooth's Tyler Mane wore contacts, Nightcrawler's Alan Cummings wore them, and so did Mystique's Rebecca Romijin.
    • In the comics, Magneto has been shown to have had white hair for the vast majority of his adult life, presumably as a side-effect of his mutation. In the films, he's introduced with grey hair (though only because, lacking Comic-Book Time, the screenwriters had to make him the realistic age of a Holocaust survivor) and he has dark brown hair as a younger man in the prequels.
    • Professor X in the comics was blond before he lost his hair, but his movie counterpart is a brunet.
    • Dazzler was a redhead rather than a blonde in the 90's X-Men animated series.
  • The Joker's sidekick Harley Quinn is almost always portrayed as having blond hair, but sported dyed white hair in Batman: The Brave and the Bold. Though it's worth noting that in one of her animated appearances, she claimed she wasn't a real blonde.
  • Dean Cain has brown eyes and brown hair; Tom Welling has green eyes (if fan sites are to be trusted) and brown hair; both played Superman, whose piercing blue eyes and black hair have been part of the standard character description for decades. At least Christopher Reeve was right.
    • Of course he had to get a real dye job to go from his natural blond...
  • Spider-Man: Peter Parker has brown eyes in the comics; in the movies, Tobey Maguire plays him, who has blue eyes. Although in the comics, they flip-flop between brown and blue so much eventually Marvel officially stated they were hazel as compromise.
  • Wonder Woman has black hair... except when portrayed by the blonde Cathy Lee Crosby.
  • Although Splinter's brown fur is usually kept in adaptations, it was turned gray for the second cartoon.
    • Also in the original underground Eastman and Laird comics, whenever the Turtles were depicted in color, their masks were uniformly red. They were colored coded for the kids' convenience in all other depictions except this one.
    • The early Mirage comics depicted April O'Neil with dark hair, which was changed to be a lighter auburn in the '80s cartoon. Her blue jumpsuit was also changed to be yellow, and she underwent a possible Race Lift (which has stuck to her modern incarnations).
  • In the original The Avengers comics, Princess Ravonna had red hair. In The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes, she has black hair and is made Ambiguously Brown to boot.
  • A brunette during her tenure in the comic books, Sally Avril was turned into a blonde for The Spectacular Spider-Man, with her hair also going from being short and curly to long and straight.
  • Scott Pilgrim:
    • Scott Pilgrim's ex-girlfriend Envy, lead singer of The Clash At Demonhead, was a redhead in the comic but a blonde in the film.
    • According to the back cover of Vol. 2, Todd Ingram is a brunette, but he is blond in the movie, and has orange hair in the game.
    • Gideon Graves has black hair in the comics, dark brown hair in the movie, and purple hair in the game.
    • Several of the characters who had black hair in the comics appear with purple hair in the game.
  • The Guardian is portrayed as a blond in the comics, but is given red hair in Young Justice in order to highlight his relation to Roy Harper.
  • Wendy Watson from The Middleman has orange hair in the original comic series, and was played by black-haired Natalie Morales in the TV series. The comic, which is actually set in the TV continuity, uses Morales' appearance.
  • Spider-Man villain Doctor Octopus is almost always portrayed as having short brown hair, but sports long black hair in the Ultimate Spider-Man animated series.
  • Eddie Brock is blond in the comics, but was given brown hair in Spider-Man: The Animated Series.
  • There was a story progression dye job for Beast Boy of Teen Titans fame. Back when he was in the Doom Patrol, in his original origin story he was shown to have brown hair. After 12 issues he was given blond hair and it's stayed that way. His hair became red in the cartoon Young Justice. All of these are origin stories given little screen time compared to the green hair he is more well known for, which the color (whatever it is naturally) always changes to after his Superhero Origin.
    • Except in the New 52, where he turns red (blood-red, not red-hair-red), to fit better with the idea that characters with animal powers are all linked to The Red and characters with plant powers to The Green.
    • In the New 52 reboot, Terra originally appeared with (and was intended by the artists to have) brown hair, as opposed to her classic blonde. Later colorists have changed her hair back to being blonde, probably to have her look more recognizable.
    • While Raven has black hair in the comics, the 2003 animated series depicted her with violet hair. Her mother Arella received a similar dye job. Raven's eyes were also depicted as blue in the comics up until her resurrection, where they officially became "indigo" and vacillated between being a deep blue or violet. The animated incarnations of Raven and Arella both sport violet eyes. In the Teen Titans Go! cartoon, Raven's hair becomes a much deeper violet, almost black.
    • The Teen Titans GO! version of Starfire has hot pink hair, rather than the usual red hair she sported in the original animated series and DC Nation spin-off shorts.
    • Kole Weathers was a redhead in her short-lived comics existence, while her animated counterpart had bright pink hair.
    • The Titans from the Elseworld "Scissors Paper Stone" one-shot was three-fourths of the team undergo has this in the New Teen Titans short "Turn Back The Clock", as Captain Thug went from having red hair to magenta, and both Dead Pretty Boy and Witchie-Poo were changed from having black hair and brown hair respectively to red hair. Prosthetic Lass is the only one who still retain her hair color in the original comic (blonde).
  • The original Aquagirl (Tula) from Aquaman was a brunette in all of her comic appearances, from Aquaman to Teen Titans. She was changed to be a redhead in the Young Justice cartoon and the Flashpoint DTV movie (which used her Young Justice design as a nod to the cartoon). Her eyes were also changed from blue to green. Earlier on, the Teen Titans Go! comic book featured Tula in a brief cameo in issue 50 and a chibi gag. She was significantly changed up, with her brown hair becoming green, her eyes going from blue to gold, and receiving a sort of "Species Lift" from going from being a more humanoid Caucasian Atlantean girl to having pale blue skin, webbed hands and feet, and gills.
  • Salem from Sabrina the Teenage Witch was an orange cat for most of the series. The live action show made him into a more traditional black cat and gave him the ability to speak, both of which were implemented into the comics.
    • Sabrina has a few other examples too:
      • Sabrina herself traditionally has pale platinum blonde hair in the comics, but the live action TV show gave her golden blonde hair, which later carried over to the animated series.
      • The comics' versions of Hilda and Zelda have red and green hair, respectively, but the live action show made them both blonde, while the animated series made Zelda the redhead and Hilda a brunette.
      • Sabrina's boyfriend Harvey has black hair in the comics, but light brown in both the sitcom and the cartoon.
  • Princess Sally of Sonic the Hedgehog is quite the odd one. In Sally's first appearance, she was red-furred and blonde-haired. The very next issue, she was pink-furred and black-haired to match her Sonic Sat AM counterpart. However, that look was only used for the pilot episode. Then the cartoon settled on a brown-furred and auburn-haired combination and it would take about two years for the comic to catch up. Eventually, one comic explained this by revealing that she had fallen into a vat of chemicals while on a mission, and it took her a long time to properly wash it out of her fur.
  • In the 2004 BIONICLE comics, Vakama's lime green and Onewa's dark blue eyes are replaced with bright blue and orange visors respectively. Nidhiki's green eyes becomes red. The black and red Turaga Dume also turns black and gray, though that may be due to oddly placed shadows.
  • The Black Smurfs from The Smurfs story of the same name were changed to purple in the Animated Adaptation and the Papercutz English translation of the original story. For the same reasons, the orange-skinned Swoofs from "The Astro Smurf" were changed to green in the cartoon show and the Papercutz English translation, and Grandpa Swoof's black hair was changed to white.
    • The nameless lord that the Smurfs meet in "The Hunger Of The Smurfs" had black hair, but when he became Mr. Poppery in the cartoon show adaptation "Haunted Smurfs", his hair was changed to gray.
  • Teen Titans Earth One:
    • Sort of inverted, originally a pre-Beast Boy Garfield Logan was shown as a brunette but was subsequently retconned as a blond a few issue later and remained so ever since. Here he is a brunette again before his powers activate.
    • In the main universe Rita Farr is a brunette, Rita Markov here has black hair.
  • The Multiversity Guidebook #1:
    • The Wonder Woman of the main universe has black hair, however several of her alternate universe counterparts are red-heads (The unnamed pirate Wonder Woman of Earth-31 and War-Woman of Earth-36), blonde (Brünhilde of Earth-10), purple haired (Vague of Earth-41) and strawberry blonde (Walküre of Earth-7).
    • The Superman of the main universe has black hair, however several of his alternate universe counterparts are blond (Hyperius of Earth-8, Savior of Earth-34 and Optiman of Earth-36), green haired (Super-Martian of Earth-31), white haired (Supremo of Earth-35) and strawberry blond (Cyclotron of Earth-39).
    • The Catwoman of the main universe has black hair, however her Earth-31 counterpart has purple hair.
  • Krysten Ritter keeps her pitch-black hair in Jessica Jones, despite Jones having brown hair in the comics.
  • Scott Lang is a redhead in the comics, but Paul Rudd plays him with black hair in Ant-Man. His daughter Cassie also goes from having blond hair to brunette.
  • Laura Barton is blonde in The Ultimates, but has dark hair in Avengers: Age of Ultron.
    • Quicksilver's hair color is naturally white in the comics. While it is also white in Age of Ultron, Quicksilver had earlier appeared in The Stinger of Captain America: The Winter Soldier with brown hair. This would imply that he either dyes it white later, or that it was turned white by his powers.
  • Batroc has black hair in the comics but light brown in Captain America: The Winter Soldier. His pointy goatee and curly mustache are also changed to a more subdued mustache and beard.
  • The title character of Amethyst, Princess of Gemworld has blonde hair, but is strawberry blonde in the Amethyst, Princess of Gemworld shorts.
  • The Netflix version of Daredevil gives Matthew Murdock, typically depicted as a Red-Headed Hero, hair that's a darker shade of red, making him appear more brunette.

    Film 
  • Harold Ramis' brown upright Eraserhead-esque hairdo was replaced with a blond pompadour and rat-tail when Egon Spengler was translated from movie (Ghostbusters) to cartoon form (The Real Ghostbusters). Likewise Ray's hair went from Dan Aykroyd's brown to red. In case this wasn't enough to distinguish the main characters, they all got different colored uniforms as well. Janine Melnitz became a spiky-mulleted '80s fashion plate. Her later-seasons look, somewhat more subdued, was then ported to the second live-action movie (although it meant Annie Potts now wore a bright red wig rather than her natural brown hair being shown).
    • Half the characters went through adaptation eye-color changes, too: Egon's eyes went from Ramis's brown to blue, Ray's from Aykroyd's brown and green heterochromia to brown, and Peter's from Murray's blue/bluish hazel to green. Even Egon's glasses changed color, from silver wire rims to bright red much thicker frames.
  • Agent L was a brunette in Men In Black, but in the cartoon, she was blonde. The show seems to be in an alternate continuity of some sort (K is still active), but still. The official explanation is that Men In Black is a movie in the reality of the animated series as well.
  • Tanz Der Vampire:
    • Sarah Chagal (played by famously blonde Sharon Tate) had straight red hair in The Fearless Vampire Killers!, or, Pardon Me, But Your Fangs Are in My Neck. In the stage version, she's a curly-haired brunette.
    • Magda, the maid, was a blonde in the movie but has red hair in the German, Austrian and Japanese productions of the musical. (She's still blonde in Poland and Hungary).
    • Alfred is an interesting case: brunet in the film, but onstage has whatever hair the actor has. This leads to the need for the costume department to make a wig that looks like the actor's hair for his dance double in the Act II Dream Ballet.
    • Except in the Hungarian version, where for some reason Alfred's dream ballet double has a freaking buzz cut.
  • Honey, I Shrunk the Kids: Amy has blonde hair in the movies, but in the T.V. series, she's a redhead.
  • Later Disney films change the characters' hair/eye color for either the marketing or film sequels.
    • The Little Mermaid gives Ariel's sisters different eye colors in the prequel The Little Mermaid III: Ariel's Beginning.
    • Cinderella originally had something like a strawberry blonde/red hair color going on, but the merchandise sells Cinderella dolls with clean blonde hair.
    • The Hunchback of Notre Dame has a small detail changed about Esmeralda's eyes. Her name is Spanish for "emerald", which reflects her eye color. However, the sequel depicts her with blue eyes.
    • The Lion King definitely had something weird going on with Nala in the sequels. Her original eye color was teal, but she has blue in the sequel and green in the prequel.
    • Even though Rapunzel is revealed to be a brunette towards the end of the film, all of the dolls sell her with blonde hair. Granted, they tend to depict her the way she looks in the film before her hair reverted to its original color.
      • Surprisingly enough, if you look closely in Frozen, you'll see what's supposedly Flynn and Rapunzel, and Rapunzel's hair is brown.
  • In an inversion of the way this trope usually plays out, the novelization of Pacific Rim turned brown-haired Hermann Gottlieb into a blond (it also gave him a German accent as opposed to the stuffy English one he uses in the film, and made no mention of the fact that he walks with a cane). This is justified by the fact that the novelization was based on an earlier draft of the script rather than the film itself.
  • In the Casablanca TV series, Rick goes from dark-haired and brown-eyed to being played by blond, blue-eyed David Soul.

    Literature 
  • The Picture of Dorian Gray: Dorian Gray is an angelic-looking blond in the novel, but its seems to be much more common for films to portray him as a brunette. The classic 1945 film version starred the dark-haired Hurd Hatfield, and subsequent dark-haired Dorians are probably due to directors going off of that film (and/or assuming that Dorian must look like a Byronic Hero) rather than actually reading Wilde's novel.
  • In the book Lord of the Flies, Simon's hair is black. In the 1960's film adaption the character has bleached blond hair.
  • In the adaptation of the E.M Forster story Maurice by James Ivory, Maurice is blond rather than dark-haired, even though (as David Leavitt wrote in his introduction to the 2005 Penguin Classics edition of the book) "Forster makes so much of Maurice's hair being black. For Forster, black hair connotes virility."
  • The Riftwar Cycle has been adapted to video game form and to graphic novel form.
    • In one of the games, Betrayal at Krondor, the magician Pug - who in the books is described as having dark brown hair and a beard and usually wearing a black robe - has shoulder-length blond hair, is clean-shaven, and wears a white robe. Similarly, Locklear is described as having wavy blond locks in the book, but in the game his hair is chestnut brown. This is even Lampshaded when he meets an old friend.
    • In the graphic novels, the elf queen Aglaranna - who is described as having reddish-gold hair that contributes to her overall soft and angelic appearance - is given bright scarlet hair.
  • The Vampire Chronicles:
    • Armand is described as having auburn hair. In The Film of the Book Interview with the Vampire, he has exceptionally dark brown or black hair. The idea of costuming Antonio Banderas as a "Botticelli angel" would have been patently ridiculous.
    • Lestat, who in the novels has very long and blond hair gets a dark pseudo-pageboy cut in the Queen of the Damned movie. And Marius who likewise was supposed to be long-haired blond gets short, slick black hair in the same movie.
    • Armand is blond in the Queen of the Damned film, although we only have the Word of God that this is him, as he's never named.
    • Slightly less distractingly, Louis' jet-black hair became brown in the Interview movie.
  • In the novel White Oleander, Claire Richards is a brunette, but in the movie, she's a blonde (and played by Renée Zellweger)
  • The Dresden Files:
    • In the original book version, Murphy is a tiny blonde. In the TV adaptation, she's a tall brunette. She was Irish-heritaged in the novels and described as the cheerleader's younger sister or some such nonsense. In the series, she was Mexican-heritaged and not at all as cute as the book version was.
    • Susan and Murphy look like each other's book counterparts because the actresses were determined to be much better for each other's roles than the roles for which they were initially cast.
  • Coraline: Not much is said about Coraline's appearance in the book, except that she has hazel colored eyes, is short for her age, and has brown hair. In the movie her eyes are the same as in the book, she has freckles on her face, and is rather tall for her age, her hair is short and blue and she always wears blue nail polish. There's a blink and you'll miss it shot of a photo showing Coraline with brown hair, implying she dyed it.
    • Coraline in the graphic novel has parted light brown hair that goes past her shoulders. In most official illustrations Coraline has darker hair in a Bob Haircut, though the length varies.
  • HP Lovecraft:
  • Stephen King's Carrie:
    • Carrie White is described as having mousy hair that was blonde when she was a child. Brian DePalma cast redhead Sissy Spacek. The 2002 film cast brunette Angela Bettis - and her child self was a brunette too. Chloe Moretz in Kimberley Pierce's 2013 film is closer to the original book.
    • Chris Hargensen is an olive-skinned brunette in the books. Presumably due to the influence of the Blondes Are Evil trope (and being the Alpha Bitch), Chris is played by blondes Nancy Allen and Emilie de Ravin. However the 2013 had the naturally blonde Portia Doubleday dye her hair brown for the role.
    • Sue Snell is blonde in the books. In the 1976 film she's played by redhead Amy Irving. The 2002 film also gave the character a Race Lift and had her played by mixed race Kandyse McClure. She's blonde in the 2013 film.
    • Tina Blake is described as a redhead in the book. She's a brunette in both the 2002 and 2013 films.
    • Norma Watson is blonde and is played by blonde PJ Soles in the 1976 film. However, the 2002 film casts the brunette Meghan Black.
  • Harry Potter: Where to begin?
    • Harry Potter's eye colour changes from green in the books to blue in the films (blue being Radcliffe's natural eye colour and green contacts being extremely uncomfortable) and in the film his hair is somewhat lighter depending on how the reader interpreted "jet black hair". This is particularly egregious because people are constantly mentioning that Harry has his mother's (green) eyes and otherwise, looks like the spitting image of his father.
    • Young Lily's eyes are brown in The Prince's Tale, despite the adult actress having blue eyes. In other words, Lily and Harry have both had an Adaptation Dye Job.
    • Luna Lovegood's hair is described as "dirty-blonde". In the movie it is platinum blonde.
    • Dudley Dursley went from blond in the books to dark-brown/black in the films
    • Aunt Petunia's hair is also changed from blonde to dark brown.
    • James has brown hair in the fifth movie.
    • Firenze the centaur, described in the book as blond with a palomino body (i.e. quite light overall) becomes pitch-black in the movie. This is probably because blond hair is harder to animate with computer graphics.
    • Neville is supposed to be blond according to Word of God, but this was never mentioned in the books. Thus he was cast as a brunet in the movies, which seems to be the dominant mental image fans all have of him. He was also supposed to be short and chubby - then Matthew Lewis shed his puppy fat and made like a beanstalk....
    • While Lord Voldemort's eyes are mentioned to be red in the books, Ralph Fiennes' natural blue eyes are used in the films.
    • McGonagall is introduced as black-haired in the books, but is portrayed by Maggie Smith and her natural greying blond hair. We must assume that her students are even more dreadful in the films.
    • In the Harry Potter games for Game Boy Color, Professor Sprout is a redhead and her hairstyle is different from other adaptations.
  • There is some confusion about Tycho Celchu's hair color in the X-Wing Series . In the comics, it's almost always blond. In the novels, by the three authors who will include him, sometimes it's blond, sometimes it's pale brown. It's never been directly addressed, but fans generally speculate that since these discrepancies never take place very soon after each other, it's because he has had time to either dye it or allow it to be bleached by sunlight.
  • The Chronicles of Narnia:
    • It is mentioned several times in the books that Lucy Pevensie is blonde. She's a brunette in the films. Funnily enough, Georgie Henley's hair was apparently lightened for the film..
    • Prince Caspian was also a blond in the books, but brunet in the film.
    • Edmund and Peter, who have blond and dark hair respectively in the books, but their hair colors are reversed in the movie, Edmund being dark-haired and Peter fair-haired. The fans seemed to like the movie version better, due to Edmund's Anti-Hero status that fitted really well with his dark appearance, which was in contrast with the other Pevensie children's, who were more fair. Susan keeps her original hair, being dark-haired, too, but don't worry, she will display her vicious side later, when she will refuse to believe in Narnia and fall in disgrace (according to the books, in a roundabout way) because she likes parties and lipstick. ] Skandar Keynes has been chosen especially for Edmund's role, because the director considered him to be darker than his co-stars. Eerie Pale-Skinned Brunette, mischievous, snarky and the facts that he wore more black and listened to heavier music created his Anti-Hero image on the spot.
    • The Pauline Baynes illustrations, which were commissioned specially by Lewis himself and have been used in many editions of the text, portray Lucy with black hair and Susan with lighter hair, despite that Lucy is stated to be blonde, and Susan is black-haired.
    • The 1980s BBC adaptation also has a blondish-haired Peter and brunette Lucy. It's version of Susan is blonde too.
  • The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy books:
    • Zaphod is blond and Ford is redheaded. In the TV series, they both have dark hair, and in the movie, Zaphod is blond again but Ford is played by Mos Def. (In the original radio serial, hair colours aren't mentioned, being rather irrelevant on radio.) Mark Wing-Davey, who played Zaphod on radio and TV, is quoted as saying that he said he thought Zaph was "a blond beach bum" (with the implication that he'd have been quite happy to wear a wig), but the producer/director (Alan Bell) wasn't listening to anyone involved in the radio show.
    • The illustrated book also has a dark-haired actor playing Zaphod. This gets lampshaded: the description of him as blond has a footnote added to it saying that anyone perceiving him as otherwise is probably suffering from Mad Human Disease.
    • In the book series, Trillian was described with dark hair. When the series came to television, she was played by blonde American Sandra Dickinson. This was done on advice of Douglas Adams himself, who liked Dickinson on the role.
  • In the Sword of Truth book series, Darken Rahl is described as having distinctly blond hair, but has black hair in Legend of the Seeker. Flashbacks of his father Panis Rahl have him be with entirely white hair.
  • The main character in the Deltora series is blond in the anime adaptation but not blond in the original book.
  • The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit:
    • Boromir and Faramir are described as having dark hair. For the movies they were given light brown hair, bordering on blond. This is purely because they needed a way to make Boromir and the dark-haired Aragorn instantly visually distinguishable, and putting Boromir in a Viking helmet had been ruled out.
  • In The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Djali is white with glided horns. In the Burbank Films Australia adaptation, however, she is brown.

    Live Action-TV 
  • In 2003 tokusatsu Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon, rather than the manga and anime's static mukokuseki rainbow of odd colors, most protagonist's hair colors are tied to the process of transformation itself.
    • Everyone except Mars has a hair color change from normal black as civilians to the vibrant hair colors from The '90s Sailor Moon anime (depicted using wigs) when they transform to their Magical Girl identities. Mars simply has longer hair, but it's still black.
    • Usagi/Sailor Moon has recursive shifts, (in lieu of the manga's switch from blonde to silver white) It's naturally black as Usagi, golden blonde as Sailor Moon, black again as Princess Serenity, and golden blonde again as Princess Sailor Moon.
    • PGSM also changed the hair color of most of the Dark Generals from the manga: Kunzite went from white to black, Nephrite from brown to red, Zoisite from blond to white. Jadeite is the only one who retained the same look.
    • Canon Foreigner Sailor Luna's appearance also differs in execution from Naoko Takeuchi's series' specificoriginal concept art While most of the basics carried over, the costume designer opted to give Luna bright blue hair to match the in-series blue Luna plushie instead of the deep purple/black Takeuchi depicted. Her petticoat was also brightened from deep purple to magenta.

     Western Animation 
  • In 1994, it was discovered that Ramesses II was a redhead. You'd never know by films such as The Prince of Egypt or A Tale Of Egypt keeping Ramesses black haired.
  • Ivanhoe The Kings Knight features redheads Richard and John with grey and black hair respectively, of course in Richard's case it may have just been a case of him having gone grey early and his hair having originally being red or, if John is any indication, black. Also none of the main Saxon characters are fair haired.

Alternative Title(s):

Adaptational Dye Job