Adaptation Name Change

Alice Andrews in the books becomes Alice Allen in The Movie then Annie Adams in The Series.

This is when a character or group has a name change between adaptations.

The Name Change of The Character can be their first name, last name or both that also includes super alter egos.

The key to this trope is that between adaptations, the character must clearly be the same. If they are a Suspiciously Similar Substitute or a Composite Character, then this trope does not apply.

This is very common in foreign adaptations, where names are changed to either reflect the local culture, or to give the show its own identity. It may also accompany a Race Lift or Gender Flip, with a character's name reflecting his or her new ethnicity or gender (usually).

This trope only applies when the adaptation is in the same language as the original. When a character's name changes in a translation, that's Dub Name Change. If a character didn't originally have any name then they're Named by the Adaptation. If it's Based on a True Story, see Roman ŕ Clef.


Examples:

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    Anime and Manga 
  • In the first anime of Berserk, Dante and Errol are renamed Dan and Earl.
  • The Rebuild of Neon Genesis Evangelion introduces some name changes. Asuka's family name is changed from Soryu to Shikinami, for example, and it turns out that with Yui Ikari her maiden name was actually Ayanami, unlike in the first series where it was Ikari and Gendo was the one who changed his name.
  • As the Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha INNOCENT has a more mundane setting than the rest of the Nanoha series, various formerly Artificial Human characters with Only One Name were given family names.
    • The Wolkenritter and Reinforce Eins now bear the Yagami family name.
    • Stern, Levi, and Dearche from the Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha As Portable games are now known as Stern Starks, Levi Russell, and Dearche K. Claudia.
    • Rynith becomes Rynith Lanster, implying a possible relation to Teana.
  • In Fullmetal Alchemist the true identity of Fuhrer King Bradley is Wrath. In the 2003 anime, he is Pride instead, as the manga version of Pride had not yet been revealed and Wrath in that version was a character created specifically for the anime.
  • The title character in Mach Go Go Go is named Go Mifune, but the '97 remake refers to him as Go Hibiki. Of course, the English version is a whole other different story.

    Comic Books 
  • In Spider-Man: Noir, the Green Goblin is just called the Goblin.
  • Probably due to a goof, Metal Sonic was initially called Mecha Sonic (the name of a different Sonic character) in Archie's Sonic comics.
  • The Age of Apocalypse version of X-23 has the name Kirika rather than Laura, since she is half-Japanese in this continuity.
  • The Ultimate Marvel universe:
    • In Ultimate Spider-Man, the Prowler's name is changed from Hobbie Brown to Aaron Davis.
    • Tigra's name is changed from Greer Nelson to Marie Grant.
    • The Tinkerer is known as Elijah Stern rather than Phineas Mason. Then again, a character named Phineas Mason later appeared in an Ultimate Fantastic Four annual, so if anything, the Ultimate Tinkerer is a Decomposite Character.
    • Captain Stacy's first name changed from "George" to "John".
    • Similarly, Flash's first name was changed from "Eugene" to "Fred"
    • Walter Hardy's first name was changed to "Jack".
    • Spot's first name was changed from "Jonathan" to "Frank".
    • The Enforcers also got hit with this. Fancy Dan's last name went from Daniel Brito" to "Crenshaw", Ox's real name was changed from "Raymond Bloch" to "Bruno Sanchez", and Montana's real name went from "Jackson Brice" to Montana being his real first name and his last name being "Bale". Frederick Foswell's real name remains unchanged, but his codename went from "The Big Man" to "Mr. Big".
    • The Blob's first name is "Franklin", not "Fred".
    • Doctor Doom's last name is "Van Damme", not "Von Doom".
    • Reed Richards's father's first name is "Gary", not "Nathaniel".
  • In the Sonic the Hedgehog comics by Archie, Antoine Depardieu became Antoine D'Coolette and Naugus became Ixis Naugus.
    • Sonic himself also partially qualifies, since "Sonic" was revealed to be a nickname. His first name was considered too embarrassing to be mentioned, although his father let it slip that his middle name was Maurice. Word of God later explained his first name was supposed to be Olgilvie, but this was never actually mentioned in the comics themselves (and the writer responsible eventually left, with the new writers not particularly eager to capitalize on his idea).
  • Sort of In-Universe example in The Multiversity. The heroes of Earth-8 are all rough expies of Marvel Comics characters, with their adventures published throughout The Multiverse as Major Comics. But they also have their own Ultimate Universe comics published entitled Essential Comics, whose characters are also revealed to be their actual alternate universe counterparts residing on Earth-7. The Captain America and Thor expies of Major Comics are American Crusader and Wundajin, but their Essential Major Comics versions are called Crusader and Thunderer.
  • While General Zod is still still Zod in Superman: Earth One, there's it's his first name instead of his last (it's "Dru-Zod" elsewhere) and his last name is "El", as he's Superman's uncle here.
  • In pre-crisis DC Comics continuity the pastiche of The Avengers was called The Champions of Angor, in post-crisis continuity they were retconned to be called The Justifiers. In post-Infinite Crisis/pre-New52 continuity they were re-imagined as the Meta-Milita of Earth-8. Then in post-New52 continuity they were re-imagined again in The Multiversity as The Retaliators of Earth-8. This has also applied to some of their individual members.
  • Teen Titans Earth One:
    • Tara Markov’s father’s name was given as Viktor Markov pre-crisis in Batman and the Outsiders, here his name is Will Markov.
    • Rita Farr is now Rita Markov due to being Tara Markov’s mother in this continuity.

    Fanfiction 

    Film - Animated 

    Film - Live Action 
  • In American Psycho, Paul Owen and Timothy Price in the novel become Paul Allen and Timothy Bryce in the film.
  • Annie (2014):
    • Oliver Warbucks is renamed Will Stacks.
    • Miss Agatha Hannigan gets her first name changed to Colleen.
  • Barbara Gordon receives a name change to Barbara Wilson in Batman & Robin as she is now Alfred's niece instead of Jim Gordon's daughter.
  • The movie adaptation of Beaches changed quite a few character names:
    • Cecilia "Cee Cee" Bloom became Cecilia Carol Bloom, with her nickname ("C.C.") now coming from both her first and middle names. Still a minor change compared to the rest of the cast.
    • Roberta "Bertie" White was renamed to Hillary Whitney, with "Hil" being used as an occasional nickname.
    • Bertie's daughter was named "Nina Rose Barron" in the original novel, but the film gives her the name of "Victoria Cecile Essex".
    • In the case of minor characters, Cee Cee's love interest John Perry was renamed John Pierce. Bertie's ex-husband also changed from Michael Barron to Michael Essex, and her Aunt Neet note  became Aunt Vesta.
  • Bride and Prejudice did this with the characters due to the Setting Update and change of location to India.
    • Then Bennets are now the Bakshis. Elizabeth Bennet is Lalita Bakshi. Jane, Mary and Lydia Bennet become Jaya, Maya and Lakhi.
    • Fitzwilliam Darcy is just plain Will Darcy. His sister Georgiana is renamed Georgina and is nicknamed Georgie.
    • Mr. Bingley and Caroline Bingley are now Mr. Balraj and Kiran Balraj.
    • Mr. Collins is Mr. Kohli.
    • Charlotte Lucas is Chandra Lamba.
    • And, for absolutely no reason, George Wickham is renamed Johnny Wickham.
  • Scrooge renamed Belle as Alice; the character also appears occasionally as Isabel in other adaptations.
  • In the film adaptation of Confessions of Georgia Nicolson, Ellen was to have been renamed to Namita to match the ethnicity of her actress; but they changed it back after fan demand.
  • In The Last Man on Earth, the first adaptation of Richard Matheson's I Am Legend, Vincent Price's character's surname was changed from Neville to Morgan.
  • In the 1934 film adaptation of JB Priestley's Dangerous Corner, the Caplan family became the Chatfield family and Olwen Peel became Ann Beale.
  • Roland Daggett is renamed John Daggett in The Dark Knight Rises.
  • In Double Indemnity, the novel's Walter Huff becomes Walter Neff in the film, for some reason. Also, Mr. and Mrs. Dietrichson were Mr. and Mrs. Nirdlinger in the novel; the latter choice was specifically because Raymond Chandler and Billy Wilder (the film's screenwriters) thought that Nirdlinger was too silly a name for such a serious story.
  • In Universal's classic Frankenstein, Dr. Victor Frankenstein is renamed Dr. Henry Frankenstein. This is a bit confusing since there is a different character in the film named Victor.
  • Gunnery Sergeant Hartman of Full Metal Jacket was named Gerheim in the original novel The Short-Timers.
  • In G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra, some characters had real-name changes from their previous toy/comic/cartoon counterparts:
    • Breaker: from Alvin R. Kibbey to Abel Shaz
    • Heavy Duty: from Lamont A. Morris to Herschel Dalton (which carried over to G.I. Joe: Renegades as well)
    • The Baroness: From Anastasia DeCobray/Cisnarova to Ana Lewis, though as the Baroness she's taken on the DeCobray name through marriage.
  • In the film version of Gone Baby Gone, Remy Broussard becomes Remy Bressant.
  • Many of the characters in Goodfellas had their names changed in the movie. Henry has his real-life last name, but:
    • Jimmy was a Burke in real life. Conway, his mother's maiden name, was used after his sister threatened to sue the filmmakers.note . Paul Cicero was Paul Vario in real life. Tommy DeVito was based on the real life Tommy DeSimone.
  • Grease
    • Sandy Dumbrowski became Sandy Olsen, in part due to Olivia Newton-John being cast in the role (and the character being changed to Australian)
    • Roger was renamed Putzie
    • Miss Lynch was changed from a teacher to a principal, thus becoming known as Principal McGee
    • Eugene Florcyzk had his surname changed to Felsnic
    • The Burger Palace Boys become The T-Birds.
  • In the various film adaptations of The Island of Doctor Moreau, Edward Prendick has been named Edward Parker (Island of Lost Souls 1933), Andrew Braddock (The Island of Doctor Moreau 1977) and Edward Douglas (The Island of Doctor Moreau, 1996).
  • In Kick-Ass:
    • John Genovese is renamed Frank D'Amico.
    • Red Mist's civilian identity, Chris Genovese, is renamed Chris D'Amico.
    • Eddie Lomas is renamed Rasul.
    • In Kick-Ass 2, Colonel Stars is renamed Colonel Stars and Stripes, since he's a Composite Character and there is no Lieutenant Stripes. His dog is also renamed from Sophia to Eisenhower.
    • A deleted scene on the DVD/Blu-Ray has Colonel Stars and Stripes call his dog Sophia - and explain to Dave that it's her secret identity.
  • Kingsman: The Secret Service:
    • Gary London becomes Gary "Eggsy" Unwin, his mother Sharon becomes Michelle. His Uncle Jack is no longer his uncle, and is renamed Harry Hart.
    • Secret Agents become referred to by codenames derived from Arthurian legend, so they might retain their names if they aren't ever called by their real ones. Chester King's closest counterpart is a man called Sir Giles in the comic.
  • In The Lord of the Rings, a minor character at Bilbo's farewell party is named Everard Proudfoot. In the books, he is named Odo Proudfoot. (Also in the books, the character named Everard was a Took - and a young hobbit, while Odo is an old hobbit. Everard Took does not appear in the film.)
  • In Mystic River, Jimmy Marcus becomes Jimmy Markum.
  • Lucas Corso of The Club Dumas becomes Dean Corso in the film adaptation, The Ninth Gate.
  • Kamen Rider: The First changes Hayato Ichimonji/Kamen Rider-2's real name to Katsuhiko Yano. "Hayato Ichimonji" is simply the alias he uses after being brought Back from the Dead by Shocker.
  • In The Relic, Dr. Gregory Kawakita gets renamed into Greg Lee.
  • At least one film adaptation of Swallows and Amazons changed Titty's name to Kitty. It's not hard to see why.
  • Capt. Stein becomes Capt. Staros in Terrence Malick's The Thin Red Line.
  • In Transformers Spike Witwicky is renamed Sam Witwicky. His father Sparkplug, is renamed Ron. The reason why was given by the writers that the movie versions don't share the same backgrounds as mechanics/oil rig workers as their original counterparts.
    • There are also inconsistencies regarding some robot names across media. The tank-Decepticon called Devastator from the first movie was named Brawl in the toy-line, since Devastator was really his working name. From the third film, Mirage and Wheeljack are renamed to Dino and Que respectively.
    • In Age of Extinction, the Pteranodon Dinobot is named "Strafe" instead of the traditional name of "Swoop", since the creators considered him to be too far altered from previous Swoops to be considered the same character. The Triceratops Dinobot was also renamed from "Slag" to "Slug" because the former is a curse word in Britain (the Transformers Animated version was renamed "Snarl", traditionally the name for the Stegosaur, for the same reason).
  • X-Men:
    • In X2: X-Men United, Pyro's name is changed from Saint-John Allerdyce to the Americanized John Allerdyce.
    • In X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Silver Fox has her name changed to the more Canadian-sounding "Kayla Silverfox". She was also apparently given a Race Lift, as she's played by the very light-skinned Lynn Collins, who claims to have distant Native ancestry but otherwise looks nothing like Silver Fox.
    • In The Wolverine, Mariko's fiance has his name changed from "Noburo Hideki" to "Noburo Mori," possibly because, although an actual Japanese name, Hideki is a given name, not a family one.
    • In X-Men: Days of Future Past, Quicksilver's real name is changed from "Pietro Maximoff" to the more Americanized "Peter Maximoff". Presumably, this is due to the fact that the film version of Quicksilver was raised in the U.S., while his comic counterpart grew up in Eastern Europe. A supplementary website, 25 Moments, still refers to him as Pietro, however. Averted in the Italian dub. The name "Pietro" is kept there.
      • There's also the fact that Quicksilver is set to appear in Avengers: Age of Ultron — that one confirmed to use the name Pietro.
    • Although it may never be said onscreen in this one, the same thing happened to Colossus in this franchise. Originally Piotr Rasputin, changed to Peter Rasputin. Of course, he's called Peter in the comics by most people anyway. "Peter" is the Anglicized version of their names in any case.
  • The evil armored bear, Iofur Raknison, had his name changed to Ragnar Sturlusson in The Golden Compass because it sounded too similar to the hero bear, Iorek Byrnison.
  • In the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the Infinity Gems are known as the Infinity Stones. Similarly, the Cosmic Cube was renamed as the Tesseract.
  • In Guardians of the Galaxy, Drax is the character's real name, as opposed to the comics, where his name is Arthur Douglas and Drax is a Code Name. This is keeping with the Adaptation Species Change Drax went through, going from a human that was turned into a living weapon in the comics to an alien for the film.
    • Carina Walters, a human in the comics, is changed to a red-skinned alien simply known as "Carina" in the movie.
  • In Ant-Man, Henry Pym's daughter has her name changed from "Hope Pym" to "Hope Van Dyne," Van Dyne being the maiden name of Hope's mother and Pym's wife, Janet.
    • Scott's ex-wife is called Maggie rather than Peggy, likely to avoid confusion with Peggy Carter. It helps that both Peggy and Maggie are nicknames derived from Margaret.
  • In The Big Sleep, Terrence "Rusty" Regan" is renamed Sean Regan.
  • In The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, Beetee is given the last name of "Latier".
  • In Superman and Superman II, the character Faora from the comic books is renamed to Ursa. In Man of Steel, the character's name is changed back to Faora.
  • In Planet of the Apes (1968) Ulysse becomes Taylor.
  • In Blue Is The Warmest Color Clémentine becomes Adčle.
  • In RoboCop (2014), Omni Consumer Products was changed to "OmniCorp". In the end, it's later revealed that it's part of OCP. Some characters also got their names changed.
    • Alex Murphy's wife and son are changed from Ellen and Jimmy to Clara and David.
    • Bob Morton, the man in change of the RoboCop project was changed to Dennett Norton.
    • Anne Lewis has become an African-American man named Jack Lewis.
    • Sgt. Reed was gender flipped into a woman named Karen Dean, though Dean being a Corrupt Cop might've also played a role.
  • The film version of Day Watch renames Kostya's father from Gennadiy to Valeriy, making him The Danza, as the character is played by Valeriy Zolotukhin. His job is also changed from a well-off interior decorator to a poor butcher.
  • Daredevil sees:
    • Roscoe "Fixer" Sweeney is renamed Fallon.
    • Jack Murdock's boxing nickname is changed from "Battlin' Jack" to "The Devil".
  • Elektra's father, Hugo Kostas Natchios, is renamed Nicholas Natchios.
  • Roddy Doyle's Barrytown Trilogy is an interesting example. The Commitments averted this trope, but when The Snapper and The Van were adapted, due to a rights issue, the Rabbitte family is renamed for both films, though Colm Meaney plays the father in all three films.
  • In Fantastic Four (2015), Doctor Doom's real name is changed from Victor Von Doom to Victor Domashev.
  • In V for Vendetta, Adam Susan becomes Adam Sutler.
  • The Lincoln Lawyer: Investigator Raul Levin becomes Frank Levin, judge Connie Fullbright becomes Jameson Fullbright, and Jesus Menendez becomes Jesus Martinez.
  • Hulk sees Bruce Banner's parents get in on this:
    • Brian Banner, Bruce's father, renamed "David" likely as an homage to the series, where (as mentioned below) Bruce himself went by "David". House of M might've RetCanoned this a bit as the verison of Brian in that universe have "David" as his middle name.
    • His mother was renamed from "Rebecca" to "Edith".
  • Vampire Academy:
    • The character Ralf Sarcozy is renamed to "Ray" in the film. His role is essentially the same.
    • The teacher Mr. Nagy is renamed to "Mr. Meisner". His role is mostly the same, trying to humiliate students by reading their secret notes aloud. Only instead of a note by Rose and Lissa (as in the book), he reads a note from Mia.
    • A minor name change. The character Camille Conta is renamed to "Camilla Conta" in the film.

    Literature 
  • Many of the French stories, especially the ones by Madame d'Aulnoy, appearing in Andrew Lang's Fairy Books feature name changes. (Many of the stories are adaptations rather than direct translations.) Examples include:
    • The Yellow Dwarf: Toutebelle (d'Aulnoy) is called Bellissima (Lang).
    • The Little Good Mouse: Joliette (d'Aulnoy) is called Delicia (Lang).
    • The Blue Bird: Florine (d'Aulnoy) is called Fiordelisa (Lang), while her stepsister Truitonne (d'Aulnoy) is called Turritella (Lang). and the fairy Soussio (d'Aulnoy) is renamed Mazilla (Lang).
    • The Golden Branch: Torticoli (d'Aulnoy) is renamed Curlicue (Lang) and Trognon (d'Aulnoy) is renamed Cabbage-Stalk. Trognon's acquired name, Radiant, is changed to Sunbeam, while Torticoli's acquired name, Peerless, remains the same.
    • d'Aulnoy's characters were frequently subject to these in English retellings. Many Victorian retellings call Toutebelle All-Fair (a translation of her name). Many female characters had their names Latinized, like Florine being changed to Florina.
    • Other changes are included in French stories not by Madame d'Aulnoy:
      • Prince Narcissus and the Princess Potentilla: Narcissus' original name was Romarin, and Potentilla's original name was Pimprenelle.
      • Prince Featherhead and the Princess Celandine: Featherhead's original name was Muguet, and Celandine's original name was Zaza.
      • An Impossible Enchantment: The princess, Graziella, is called Galantine in the original version, her mother Mutinosa was called Mutine, and her husband Blondel was called Blondin.
      • Fairer-than-a-Fairy: The evil fairy Lagree was called Nabote in the original version.
      • The Blue Parrot: The protagonist Lino is called Grisdelin in the original version, while his wife Hermosa is called Charmante. The names of the villains, Ismenor and Riquette, remain the same.

    Live Action TV 
  • Nia Vardalos's character in My Big Fat Greek Wedding was named Toula, but renamed to Nia for the TV series in order to match the actress.
  • The TV adaptation of Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit changed Jeanette's name to Jessica, possibly to detract from the autobiographical elements of the story.
  • The iconic TV adaptation of The Incredible Hulk had the title character's alter ego sort of did this. "Bruce" was still Banner's middle name, but he went by his first name, which was changed from "Robert" to "David". This was due to the network thinking Bruce sounded "too gay", as well as the head writer wanting to ditch the "comic booky" Alliterative Name trope.
  • Game of Thrones:
    • Asha Greyjoy becomes Yara Greyjoy to avoid confusion with the similarly-named Osha.
    • Robert Arryn also becomes Robin Arryn to avoid confusion with King Robert (whom he's in fact named after in the books) and the similarly named Robb Stark. He's also called "Sweetrobin" in the books as a nickname.
    • Robb Stark's Love Interest Jeyne Westerling is renamed as Talisa Maegyr. Her ethnicity also changed: she isn't a Westerosi Andal, she's Volantene of (distant) Valyrian descent. Also counts as Race Lift, because the Volantene are Ambiguously Brown.
    • A reverse ethnicity change occurred with Vargo Hoat. He was renamed Locke because he's now a Westerosi First Man rather than (vaguely Eastern European) Qohorik.
    • The Others are exclusively called the White Walkers, presumably to avoid confusion with the similarly titled characters in LOST. In the novels, they are usually called the Others, and "white walkers" is one of several alternate fearful names for them.
    • Two Slaver's Bay characters: Grazdan mo Ullhor of Astapor is renamed Greizhen mo Ullhor, while Grazdan mo Eraz of Yunkai is renamed Razdal mo Eraz. Apparently Grazdan is the Ghiscari equivalent of "Joe".
    • The Three-Eyed Raven is a Three-Eyed Crow in the book, which is a species change in truth.
  • In the TV series Arrow, based on Green Arrow, Dinah Laurel Lance goes by Laurel Lance, her dad Detective Larry Lance is Detective Quentin Lance, and Star City itself is Starling City. Oliver Queen is never actually called Green Arrow, just "the vigilante" or sometimes "the hood", and Arthur King/Merlyn the Archer is Malcom Merlyn/the Dark Archer.
    • In Season 2, Nyssa Raatko is introduced as Nyssa al Ghul.
  • Gotham changes Poison Ivy's real name from "Pamela Isley" to "Ivy Pepper."
  • The short-lived Flash Gordon series has the titular character's real name be Stephen with "Flash" being a nickname he got from his father for being a fast runner. Additionally, Ming the Merciless is now Ming the Benevolent Father, although he's still quietly called "the Merciless" behind his back.
    • In fact, Flash's real name becomes a plot point in the pilot, when his mother is mind-controlled to call him and ask him to come home, calling him "Flash" in the process. He realizes something's wrong, as his mother always calls him by his real name.
  • The TV adaptation of The Cousins War Series renames Elizabeth Shore (as she is called in the novel) to Jane, the name she used in real life and is better known by as a historical figure.
  • Sabrina the Teenage Witch had several of these after the TV movie was turned into a full-length series. Sabrina Sawyer's name was changed to Sabrina Spellman, Marnie became Jenny and Katy LaMore became Libby Chessler.
  • When The Dresden Files was adapted into a TV series, Lt. Karrin Murphy was changed to Connie Murphy, as there was an actual Karen Murphy in the Chicago Police Department. Additionally, Harry's mentor Justin DuMorne in the novels was renamed to Justin Morningway and made Harry's maternal uncle, possibly to make it more likely that he would raise Harry after his parents' deaths.
  • Similar to the 2014 remake, RoboCop: The Series saw a number of characters from the original film trilogy get their names changed outside of Alex Murphy/RoboCop himself and his son Jimmy.
    • Anne Lewis became Lisa Madigan
    • Sgt. Reed became Sgt. Stan Parks
    • Alex's former wife and Jimmy's mother, Ellen, had her first name changed to Nancy.
    • The Old Man became the OCP Chairman.
  • Spartacus Series:
    • The real name of the first seasons's Big Bad, Quintus Lentulus Batiatus, is Gnaeus Cornelius Lentulus Batiatus.
    • The real life son of the final Big Bad Marcus Licinius Crassus was named after him. The show renamed him Tiberius to avoid the One Steve Limit.
    • Subverted with Agron. At first it seemed that he is the German Rebel Leader Castus with a different name, but Castus appeared as a Sixth Ranger in the final season, thus making them a Decomposite Character instead.
  • The Walking Dead:
    • Caucasian Thomas Richards was Race Lifted into a Hispanic , thus became Tomas. Oddly, his new last name isn't revealed.
    • The Chalmers family became the Chambler family.
    • The Marauders became the Claimers, though it may or may not be a case of Named by the Adaptation whom the members played straight.
    • Some unconfirmed but likely examples include Julie (Tyreese's daughter) becoming Sasha (Tyreese's sister), The Hunters becoming Terminus, and the Hunters' leader Chris becoming Terminus' leader Gareth.
  • The 90's live-action Flash show changed Captain Cold's real name from Leonard Snart to the more Meaningful Name of Leonard Wynters.
    • The 2014 series sees Iris West's father's first name changed from Ira (New Earth) or William (New 52) to Joe, Similarly, Roy G. Bivolo goes by Prism rather than "Rainbow Raider" or his New 52 codename of "Chroma". Additionally, Peek-a-Boo has her name changed from Lashawn Baez to Shawna Baez, and the Reverse Flash spends most of the first season going by the alias Harrison Wells, though it's stated that his true name is still Eobard Thawne.
  • Doctor Who: The Target novelisation of "The Abominable Snowman" changed most of the names of the Buddhist monks due to the writers bungling the research so horribly, with the exception of the Meaningful Name pair of Rinpoche and Padmasambhava.
  • In Peter Pan and Disney's Peter Pan, "Captain Hook" is the real name of the character; he was named "James Hook" even before he had a hook. However, in Once Upon a Time, Captain Hook is an alias and his real name is Killian Jones.
  • Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has Daisy Johnson rechristened "Skye" for the first season and a half before her father reveals her birth name. It's also mentioned that she used to go by the name "Mary Sue Poots" while growing up in an orphanage.
    • Daniel Whitehall's real name is changed to Werner Reinhardt. "Daniel Whitehall" is an alias he came up with to hide the fact that he's both Older Than He Looks and a Nazi war criminal.
  • A.K.A. Jessica Jones changes Patsy Walker's name to Trish Walker, with Patsy being an Affectionate Nickname used by her fans. Similar to the Maggie/Peggy example from the Ant-Man entry above, both Trish and Patsy are derived from the name "Patricia".
  • Supergirl: On Earth, Kara is going by Kara Danvers instead of either Linda Lee or Linda Lee Danvers, names she used in the comics.
  • Twelve Monkeys: Dr. Kathryn Railly from the film becomes Dr. Cassandra Railly on the show.
  • Happened in adaptations of Venezuelan soap Cristal. Mexican version El Privilegio de Amar changed most of the names: Victoria Ascanio became Luciana Duval; Alejandro Ascanio became Alex Duval; Priest Ángel de Jesús became Priest Juan de la Cruz (in this case, retained the Religious and Mythological Theme Naming in both versions). Basically, only (co-)protagonist Cristina kept the same first name, altough the surname was different. On the other hand, Brazilian version, also named Cristal, kept most of original names intact, with minor adjustments to fit Portuguese language names, with exception of male protagonist Luis Alfredo, renamed as Joăo Pedro.
  • Adaptations of Colombian soap Yo soy Betty, la fea usually change the characters names. The protagoinst name Betty (short for Beatriz, not Elizabeth) became Lety (short for Leticia) in Mexico and Bela (short for Anabela and also a Punny Name, as "bela" means "beautiful" in Portuguese) in Brazil. She kept her original (first) name in American version Ugly Betty, but the other characters not.

    Pinball 

    Theater 
  • In The Musical version of Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure, Princess Joanna has been renamed "Princess Mary." (On the cast album, she is "Sarah.")
  • When Grease went from Chicago to Broadway, Danny's second-in-command went from being called "Miller" to "Kenickie" (while the original greaser that had the latter name was cut). This change stuck with all later adaptations, to the point where the original "Kenickie" was in turn renamed "Miller" with 40th anniversary revival of the Chicago version.
  • Merrily We Roll Along: Along with the Setting Update, every character from the original play had his or her name changed for the musical, though much of the original characterizations remained.
  • La Traviata, adapted from La dame aux camelias (itself a Roman ŕ Clef), changes the name of every character, though occasionally productions will change them back.
  • The play adapted from Darkness at Noon changes the name of Arlova (Rubashov's doomed secretary) to Luba Loschenko.
  • The Most Happy Fella has an odd example in the heroine, who is called Rosabella until the final scene, when she reveals that her real name is Amy. In the original play, They Knew What They Wanted, Amy was never renamed Rosabella or anything else.
  • In the play adapted from Native Son, Bigger's girlfriend Bessie is renamed Clara, and the circumstances of her death are changed.
  • In the opera Billy Budd, the HMS Bellipotent of the book becomes the Indomitable, which was its name in the novel's early drafts.
  • In Jekyll & Hyde, Jekyll's fiancee was originally named Lisa Carew, but then renamed to Emma Carew. There have been so many changes and updates made to the show that new productions alternate between the two names depending on which version they're following.
  • Starlight Express re-named Hashamoto to Nintendo for the "new" West End production in 1994. In the 2012 UK tour, Ashley the Smoking Car was renamed to Duvay the Sleeper because smoking cars are no longer common on trains. Apart from a slight change of lyrics to reflect her new function, the character is the same.

    Webcomics 
  • Darths & Droids renames Luke Skywalker to Adam Lars. Obi Wan then told him his real name was Luke Amidala. He now goes by the pseudonym Luke Starkiller. "Skywalker", for the record, has yet to be uttered once in the entire run of the comic.
    • The black-vested smuggler who's partners with Chewbacca is, of course, called Greedo. The green-skinned alien is called Han Solo and owns the Millenium Falcon until Greedo shoots him. So Greedo shot first, only Greedo was actually the character Star Wars fans know as Han... (And, as above, "Greedo" then claims to be Han [who, conveniently, is a shapeshifter] in order to claim the Falcon.)
    • Leia isn't a princess, she's named Princess Organa. Like Adam/Luke, her real name is still Leia, but it was changed to stop Anakin/Vader finding her.

     Web Original 
  • The Lizzie Bennet Diaries does this due to it being a Setting Update of Pride and Prejudice.
    • For starters, Elizabeth Bennet is now exclusively Lizzie, although she is given a name with "Elizabeth Bennet" on it at one point.
    • Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy is now just William Darcy.
    • Mr. Charles Bingley became Bing Lee and his sister became Caroline Lee. They both got a Race Lift to boot.
    • Charlotte Lucas became Charlotte Lu and also got a Race Lift.
    • Mr. Collins is now Ricky Collins
    • Georgiana Darcy is Gigi Darcy, although her full name is still Georgiana.
    • Colonel Fitzwilliam is now Fitz Williams, also going hand-in-hand with a Race Lift.
  • Emma Approved:
    • George Knightley's first name was changed to Alex, perhaps to avoid confusion with George Wickham from The Lizzie Bennet Diaries produced by the same team.
    • Miss Hetty Bates became Maddie Bates
  • Most characters from TOME had their names changed from the original TTA.
    • Kirbopher15 became Kirbopher.
    • Nailock became Nylocke.
    • White Queen became Whyti.
    • Grounder became Granda.
    • Racoon became Rockoon.
    • Bling Bling became Doubling.
    • Tamerlisa became Anneva.
    • Ruri became Kizuna.
    • Tormentros became Thorment.
    • Hamstar became Hyprelynx.
    • Thunder256 became Elescope.
    • And lastly, Voltarius became Tigerlilly. (Although since Voltarius and Tigerlilly also have different roles, it is debatable if this counts as a name change or a new character altogether.

    Western Animation 
  • Spider-Man: The Animated Series:
    • The Sinister Six was called the Insidious Six. Fox Kids censors felt that the word sinister sounded too menacing for a children's program (even though another Fox Kids program, X-Men, had Mister Sinister as a villain).
    • Electro was renamed because the producers did not want to interfere with the continuity of James Cameron's proposed Spider-Man movie, in which the Sandman and Electro were supposed to be the villains. Although Sandman remained unseen in the series when Cameron's film fell through, Electro was belatedly introduced in the series' fifth season. Electro appears in the "Six Forgotten Warriors" storyline of season five; here his name is Rheinholt Schmidt (He's Red Skull's son in this series) instead of Max Dillon.
      • Cameron's film also would've changed Electro's name. The script had him called Carlton Strand instead of Max Dillon. Sandman was also called Boyd instead of Flint Marko.
    • Felicia Hardy's parents had their names changed: her father went from "Walter Hardy" to "John Hardesky" and Lydia Hardy had her first name changed to "Anastasia".
  • The Spectacular Spider-Man
    • Molten Man's civilian identity, Mark Raxton, is renamed Mark Allan (because he and Liz Allan are full siblings instead of stepsiblings).
    • Ned Leeds is Asian in the series, and is therefore renamed Ned Lee.
    • Kenny "King Kong" McFarlane from Ultimate Spider-Man is also Asian, and named Kenny Kong.
    • Silver Sable is Sable Manfredi instead of Silver Sablinova since she's Silvermane's daughter.
  • Ultimate Spider-Man
    • The show does this with Luke Cage's parents, changing them from "James and Esther Lucas" to "Walter and Amanda Cage". This also suggests Luke Cage was always named that in this universe, as in the comics, he had it legally to it from "Carl Lucas".
    • In the comics, the Rhino's real name is Aleksei Sytsevich, with his original name, Alex O'Hirn, Retconned into being an alias. In the cartoon, Alex O'Hirn is his real name.
    • Arcade's amusement park is changed from Murderworld to Madland.
  • In Young Justice, the Secret Society of Super Villains was called "The Light." In "Revelation", Batman refers to it as "a secret society of supervillains" when he deduces the group's existence but doesn't know what it's called.
    • Paula Crock is given a Race Lift, changing her maiden name from "Brooks" to "Nguyen."
    • A minor one: Lian Harper becomes Lian Nguyen-Harper, using both parents' surnames.
    • Though they never appeared on the show due to having their cameos cut, Word of God claims that Mary Marvel and Captain Marvel Jr. would've been known as "Sergeant Marvel" and "Lieutenant Marvel".
    • Though the other three Canon Foreigner heroes from Super Friends never had their identities revealed, Samurai's name was given as Toshio Eto. Samurai's analogue in Young Justice is a young girl named Asami "Sam" Koizumi.
  • Captain Atom is renamed from "Nathaniel Adam" to "Nathaniel Adams" (note the "s") in Justice League Unlimited, Batman: The Brave and the Bold and Young Justice. Greg Weisman, original co-writer of the "Nathaniel Adam" version of the character and partially responsible for both of those last two examples, notes that the "correct" version always felt artificial.
  • In ThunderCats (2011), Jackalman and Monkian are renamed Kaynar and Addicus, since the former are now their species names.
  • Mr. and Mrs. Dearly from The Hundred and One Dalmatians were changed to Roger and Anita Radcliffe for Disney's 101 Dalmatians. Later adaptations give them the given names from the movie and the surname from the book. Also, Saul Badun becomes Horace, and Lt. Tib becomes Sgt. Tibbs (with that particular cat also getting a sex change in the process).
  • In the Spawn animated series, Chapel from Youngblood was renamed "Jess Chapel". In the comics, his real name is Bruce Stinson, with Chapel serving as his superhero Code Name.
  • In X-Men: Evolution, Toad's real name was changed from Mortimer Toynbee to Todd Tolensky and Avalanche's was changed from Dominic Petros to Lance Alvers.
  • In The Super Mario Bros. Super Show and some other Mario adaptations, Bowser was called by his Japanese name, King Koopa, even though the games always used the name Bowser from day one.
  • The Koopalings in The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3 and Super Mario World. In this case, when the former of the two shows aired, Nintendo of America hadn't yet given them official names.
    • Larry=Cheatsy
    • Morton=Big Mouth
    • Wendy=Kootie Pie
    • Iggy=Hop
    • Roy=Bully
    • Lemmy=Hip
    • Ludwig=Kooky
  • The My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic toyline has become somewhat infamous for using different names for some of the minor characters in the show (among other problems).
    • The storybook version of the show's pilot calls Princess Luna "Selena". This was her name in the development but changed for legal reasons. Lauren Faust suspected the storybook writer didn't get the memo.
    • One of the show's first antagonists, Trixie, got a toy in the blind bag series... named Lulamoon. Most fans ignored this outside of a few jokes, but later toys updated her name to be Trixie Lulamoon.
    • There's a background pony who's been called twice on screen as Rose and has a toy named Roseluck. The name "Roseluck" hasn't been used in the show yet, but its easy to believe Rose is short for that.
    • One of Rose's friends is named Daisy in the show. She has a toy named Flower Wishes. The jury is still out on that one.
    • And then there's Bon Bon. The toyline makes her most official name Sweetie Drops, despite the previously-released Gameloft game calling her Bon Bon in text and even voiced dialogue. Even afterwards, different sources switch between calling her Sweetie Drops and Bon Bon with no discernible rhyme or reason.
    • The people in charge of names in the toyline seem to be in love with the word "Dazzle" since it seems to be added to a number of show characters who received toys. Such as Mrs. Cup "Dazzle" Cake, Diamond "Dazzle" Tiara and most nonsensically, Daring "Dazzle" Do.
  • The cartoon series adaptation of Watership Down changed Hyzenthlay's name to Primrose. The show was aimed at a much younger audience than the book, so presumably they wanted characters' names to be easier to remember and pronounce. It's also possible that they just wanted a girlier sounding name.
  • In Quest for Camelot, based very loosely on Vera Chapman's retelling of the legend of Lynette and Gareth, The King's Damosel, Lynette becomes Kayley and the composite of Gareth and Chapman's Original Character Lucius becomes Garrett.
  • Iron Man: Armored Adventures: Madame Masque's civilian name was changed to Whitney Frost to Whitney Stane as a result of becoming Obadiah Stane's daughter in this series.
  • The Swan Lake adaptation The Swan Princess replaces Prince Siegfried with Prince Derek, and Odile with Bridget.
  • For some reason (probably Critical Research Failure on the writers' part), Robotnik's first name was changed from Ivo to Julian in Dic's second Sonic cartoon.
    • In the comics, it's "Julian Kintobor, from the House of Ivo." "Julian" in the cartoon comes from the "back in time" episode, which took place before he became Dr. Robotnik.
  • Superman: The Animated Series changed the name of Weather Wizard's brother from Clyde to Ben.
  • As with The Series and the 2014 film, RoboCop: Alpha Commando sees Murphy's family renamed again with Ellen's first name being changed to Susan and Jimmy's to Richie. The same series also sees Sgt. Reed's first name (which, depending on the movie, is either John or Warren) changed to Joe.
  • When The Batman decided to adapt Ellen Yindel from Batman: The Dark Knight Returns and gave her Race Lift to make her Asian, they also changed her name to "Ellen Yin".
  • Batman: The Brave and the Bold changed Batwoman's name from Kathy Kane to Katrina Moldoff, and had her referred to as Bat-Lady. This was the result of Executive Meddling, as the execs at DC Comics were worried that the character's Adaptational Villainy would negatively impact the Kate kane Batwoman series that was being published at the time.
  • In Beware the Batman, Magpie's real name is "Margaret Sorrow" rather than "Margaret Pye", likely to avoid the corniness of the original Meaningful Name. (It's still Meaningful ["One for sorrow..."] just a touch more subtle).
  • All the main characters in Around the World with Willy Fog: Phileas Fogg becomes Willy Fog, Passeport becomes Rigodon, Aouda becomes Romy, Inspector Fix becomes Inspector Dix.
  • When X-Men decided to reveal that Sabretooth was Graydon Creed's father, they did this by revealing that Graydon was named after him, hence Sabretooth being "Graydon Creed, Sr." rather than having his first name be "Victor".
    • Solarr's real name is Bill Braddock rather than Silas King.
  • Silver Surfer changed Lady Death's name to Lady Chaos due to the Never Say "Die" trope.
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2012) gives some characters different names than other continuities. For example, Mutagen Man's real name is Timothy; in the 80s cartoon, it was Seymour Gutz. The Rat King is Victor Falco; in the Archie comics, his name was Ha'ntaan. Also, in this show, Rahzar, Bebop, and Rocksteady are only aliases (of Chris Bradford, Anton Zeck, and Ivan Steranko, respectively); previous continuities did not give them any other names.
  • G.I. Joe: Renegades has three cases:
    • As noted under film, Heavy Duty's name was changed to "Herschel Dalton", though otherwise, he's more in line with his original incarnation (an American soldier and Roadblock's cousin).
    • Due to going the route used in G.I. Joe: The Movie of him being Duke's brother, Vincent Falcone (Lt. Falcon) had his last name changed to "Hauser".
    • Of a minor sort, Stalker had "one" added to his codename.