The Hunchback of Notre Dame is a famous 1831 French novel written by Victor Hugo. It is about a deformed hunchback named Quasimodo who lives in the bell towers of the Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris, his master Frollo, a gypsy girl named Esmeralda, and the tragedy that ensues with their interactions. It has been adapted into numerous other works of media since its initial publication.
The Hunchback of Notre Dame and its adaptations include:
- La Esmeralda (1836): An opera.
- La Esmeralda (1844): A ballet.
- Notre-Dame de Paris (1998): A musical.
- The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1999): A musical based on the Disney animated film.
- Esmeralda (1905): A French silent film starring Denise Becker as Esmeralda and Henry Vorins as Quasimodo. The first ever movie adaptation of the novel, it is now a lost film.
- The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1911): A French silent film starring Henry Krauss as Quasimodo and Stacia Napierkowska as Esmeralda. It too is now a lost film.
- The Darling of Paris (1917): An American silent film starring Theda Bara as Esmeralda and Glen White as Quasimodo. Like most of Bara's movies, it is now a lost film. Reportedly, it deviated greatly from the novel, making Quasimodo less ugly and ending with Esmeralda marrying him.
- Esmeralda (1922): A British silent film starring Sybil Thorndike as Esmeralda and Booth Conway as Quasimodo. It is now (sensing a pattern?) a lost film.
- The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1923): An American silent film starring Lon Chaney as Quasimodo and Patsy Ruth Miller as Esmeralda. This is the oldest surviving film version.
- The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1939): An American film in black and white starring Charles Laughton as Quasimodo, Maureen O'Hara as Esmeralda, and Cedric Hardwicke as Jean Frollo. This is the first sound version.
- The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1956): A French film starring Anthony Quinn as Quasimodo and Gina Lollobrigida as Esmeralda. This is the first version to be in color.
- The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1976): A British television film starring Warren Clarke as Quasimodo.
- The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1982): A British-American television film produced by Norman Rosemont and Malcolm J. Christopher. It featured Anthony Hopkins as Quasimodo and Derek Jacobi as Frollo.
- The Hunchback (1997): A New Zealand television film produced by Stephane Reichel and directed by Peter Medak, it starred Mandy Patinkin as Quasimodo, Salma Hayek as Esmeralda, and Richard Harris as Frollo.
- Quasimodo d'El Paris (1999): A French comedy film set in modern day directed by and starring Patrick Timsit as Quasimodo. It also stars Richard Berry as Frollo and Mélanie Thierry as Esmeralda.
- The Hunchback of Notre Dame (Burbank Animation) (1986/1996)
- The Hunchback of Notre Dame (Disney) (1996)
- The Hunchback of Notre Dame (Golden Films) (1996)
- The Hunchback of Notre Dame (Jetlag Animation) (1996)
- The Secret of the Hunchback (1996)
- The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1966)
- The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1977)
- The Magical Adventures of Quasimodo (1996)
- Hunchback (1983)
Common tropes across adaptations:
- Adapted Out:
- More modern adaptations almost invariably cut Sister Gudule/Paquette, rendering Esmeralda a gypsy by birth.
- Jehan Frollo is rarely included unless he's being used as the villain in place of his priestly brother.
- Adaptation Personality Change: Leading to Adaptational Heroism or Adaptational Villainy.
- In the book, Quasimodo is rather reclusive, and generally shuns the outside world. In the films, he is usually put in a more sympathetic light, and desires to be accepted by society.
- The exact opposite usually happens to Frollo. In his book form, he is, for the most part, benevolent but sexually frustrated, and his transformation into a villain is tragic. However, in the films, he is made into an all-out evil, sexually depraved monster from the start.
- In the novel, Gringoire is a pompous coward who abandons Esmeralda to her fate. In the film versions, he genuinely cares about Esmeralda and does everything he can to secure her release.
- In the book, Esmeralda is a naive and innocent Ingenue. This is unusual because of her upbringing, so most adaptations make her more savvy and worldly.
- Age Lift:
- Fleur-de-lys has never been portrayed as twelve with her either being Esmeralda's or Phoebus' age when she is portrayed on screen.
- Esmeralda is usually depicted as being in her twenties instead of being sixteen.
- Battering Ram: In many versions, Quasimodo drops a long piece of wood onto the rabble attacking Notre Dame, and the rabble use it as an improvised battering ram.
- Bittersweet Ending: Many versions feature an ending in which Esmeralda is still alive and Frollo has been killed, but Quasimodo is dead.
- The Grotesque: Quasimodo in (almost) all versions.
- Historical Domain Character: Many versions feature King Louis XI of France.
- Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: Quasimodo does this to Frollo in the 1982 version.
- Promoted to Love Interest: In many versions, Gringoire is the one whom Esmeralda falls in love with. There are also versions in which she ends up with Quasimodo.
- Race Lift: In all (surviving) adaptations besides the 1923 one and, for some reason, the Dingo Pictures version, Esmeralda is a Gypsy by birth rather than being a French girl raised by them. In the present-day-set Quasimodo d'El Paris, Esmeralda is rendered as Cuban.
- Spared by the Adaptation: Esmeralda almost invariably gets to survive. Quasimodo's death is retained more often than hers, but he's often spared as well.
- A Taste of the Lash: Quasimodo gets flogged in all versions. Frollo does this to himself in the 1997 version.