So you're watching The Film of the Book, content in the fact that the movie has been adapting the source material pretty well so far... but then the film ends on a Cliffhanger. Wait a minute, what gives? Was there another book in the series that the writers plan to adapt, so they tossed in a Sequel Hook for that one? Well, no. You double-check the source material and the book continues beyond that point. What happened?
Well, The Film of the Book was split in half.
Divided for Adaptation, as the name suggests, is when the source material is a single work, but its adaptation is split into multiple pieces. This can happen if the original work was something of a Doorstopper, but it can also be the result of a film series wanting to go out on a big note for its Grand Finale: Harry Potter is a good example of this, as the final book was no longer than the others, but was split into two when adapted to film. Executive Meddling can be a major reason this happens, because if the book-to-film series is popular, this is a good excuse to extend the life of the franchise and wring more money out of it. If the source material isn't quite long enough to fill up all that time (whereas 2½ hours wasn't enough, 5 hours is now too much), chances of Adaptation Expansion and/or Filler can also occur.
For the sake of not overloading this page with examples, this trope excludes television series and Mini Series, since those are multi-part by their very nature. However, situations where the show's pacing is drastically changed partway through (i.e., the adaptation of a manga that has always adapted two issues an episode suddenly goes down to one per episode), may be included.
- Atlas Shrugged, a famous Doorstopper, was split into three movies (released in 2011, 2012, and 2014).
- Breaking Dawn was split into two movies, which were released in 2011 and 2012.
- Divergent: Allegiant was intended to be split into two movies. Due to the underwhelming performance of the first part released in 2016, the second part, Ascendant was scrapped as a theatrical film. There were plans to either release it as a Made-for-TV Movie, or turn it into a television show to conclude the series, but both of these ideas were ultimately scrapped as well.
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows was split into two movies, released in 2010 and 2011.
- The 2010s movie adaptation of Stephen King's It was split into two movies, with the first one focusing on the main characters as kids, and the second one focusing on them as adults.
- The 1934 French adaptation for Les Misérables was divided into three parts which were released in three subsequent weeks, running a total of four-and-a-half hours.
- The 1973 adaptation of The Three Musketeers was split into two parts, with the second part, titled The Four Musketeers released the following year.
- Mockingjay was split into two movies, released in 2014 and 2015.
- Tolkien's Legendarium:
- In-Universe, the entire story of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings was a single volume, entitled There and Back Again: A Hobbit's Holiday, but the story is typically published in several volumes.
- The Lord of the Rings is an inversion: Tolkien's six novels are turned into three movies.
- The Hobbit was adapted into three movies: The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, and The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies.
- As War and Peace is a massive Doorstopper and can be a challenge for adaptations, the Soviet version takes the cake being a more faithful adaptation and was released into four parts in 1966 and 1967 with a total runtime of 7 hours and 11 minutes.
- When Douglas Adams adapted his radio play The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy into book form, it came out in two volumes, as The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and The Restaurant at the End of the Universe. He would tell the story that he took so long over writing it that his publisher rang him up and told him to finish the page he was on and send the whole thing over, and they'd release the rest later.
- Power Rangers has been splitting a number of their adapted Super Sentai series into two parts starting The New '10s thanks to a mandate by the TV network of shows having only twenty episodes max (a Sentai Series usually has around fifty) per season. The only series to avert this so far is Power Rangers Megaforce, which is an Adaptation Amalgamation of Tensou Sentai Goseiger (Season 1, in 2013) and Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger (Season 2, in 2014):
- Runaways (2017) spreads the plot of the original miniseries over multiple seasons.
- A Song of Ice and Fire:
- Saturday Night Live parodied The Hobbit with a Parody Commercial for The Hobbit, which it says will be in nineteen 3-hour movies. The first film is already in the can, but others include The Hobbit 2: Journey to the Beginning of the Walk to Smaug's Lair, Hobbit 3: Shoot, I Just Realized I Forgot Something Back at the Shire. Mind if we Double Back? and Hobbit 4: Apple Maps: An Unexpected Detour. The final film will be released in 2028 - bring your grandkids!
- The Animated Adaptation of Batman: The Dark Knight Returns was split into two parts, with Part 1 released in 2012, and Part 2 released in 2013.
- Sky1's animated series based on The Moomins, Moominvalley, has two episodes directly based on the novel Moominsummer Madness and one that seems to be inspired by it. Instead of ending on a cliffhanger however, the episode of the same title is an Adaptation Distillation in which Moominvalley is flooded, the Moomins discover the theatre and meet Emma, and then the valley is unflooded again. The part about them actually putting on a play is moved to the next episode, after the flood (although the audience still end up in boats), where it's combined with the comic strip story "The Golden Tale". And Snufkin's subplot is likewise given its own episode later, "Snufkin and the Park-Keeper".
- Hilda: The animated adaptation of the graphic novel "Hilda and the Midgnight Giant" is spread over two episodes, with several new scenes added. The events from "Hilda and the Black Hound" are divided over 4 episodes, though the bulk of the story was used for the Season 1 finale.