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Another Top 10 Differences Between the Harry Potter Movies and Books

VO: Rebecca Brayton WRITTEN BY: Nathan Sharp

There really are too many to count, but we’re gonna keep doing it anyway! For this list, we’ll be looking at ten more staggering differences between the movie adaptations and the novels, including character motivations and backgrounds, story developments, key scenes, and anything in between. Join WatchMojo as we count down our picks for the Another Top 10 Differences Between the Harry Potter Movies and Books.

Check out the voting page for this list and add your picks: http://WatchMojo.comsuggest/Top+Ten+Differences+Between+The+Harry+Potter+Movies+and+Books. Special thanks to our user MikeMJPMUNCH for suggesting this idea!


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Script written by Nathan Sharp

Another Top 10 Differences Between the Harry Potter Movies and Books

There really are too many to count, but we’re gonna keep doing it anyway! Welcome to, and today we’re counting down our picks for Another Top 10 Differences Between the Harry Potter Movies and Books.

For this list, we’ll be looking at more more staggering differences between the movie adaptations and the novels. These differences can come from any facet, whether they altered character motivations or backgrounds, changed story developments, omitted scenes, and anything in between. If you don’t see something you think should have been on this list, be sure to check out our original video of the Top 10 Differences Between the Harry Potter Movies and Books.

#10: Book: Harry and Dudley Share a Goodbye Handshake

Movie: No Handshake

Character arcs are just as important as flashy cinematic battles. However, it seems as if the movies had no time to devote to the character development of Dudley. The last time we see Dudley, he’s packing up the car with Vernon to leave Privet Drive, all without a word or a glance towards Harry. However, this is not the case in the final novel, as he shakes Harry’s hand in an act of appreciation and redemption before leaving. This scene was filmed for “The Deathly Hallows: Part 1,” but was eventually omitted from the finished movie. Still, that omission left time for the heartbreaking scene where Hermione erases her parent’s memories, so…yay?

#9: Book: The Gang Discovers Fluffy After Malfoy Fails to Show for a Duel

Movie: The Staircase Moves

This difference isn’t outrageous, but it still speaks volumes to Draco’s and Harry’s characters. In the novel, the slithery and narcissistic Draco Malfoy arrogantly challenges Harry to a duel in the Trophy Room, which he accepts. However, this was nothing but a ruse to get Harry in trouble. The gang then runs from Filch and discovers Fluffy. In the movie, they discover Fluffy because the staircase moved. Convenient. We get cutting the process for time, but it omits crucial character development for both Harry and Draco. Draco proves his cunning by tricking the protagonists, and Harry proves his bravery by accepting the duel. It’s more meaningful than a simple staircase blunder.

#8: Book: Kreacher Is Given an Entire Character Arc

Movie: Kreacher Barely Appears

If there’s one major criticism that the movies faced, it was their neglect of character development. One of the biggest victims of these omissions has to be Kreacher. In the movies, Kreacher is just a miserable old house elf. He certainly is that in the novels as well, but he also becomes so much more. He discloses sensitive information and leads Harry into danger, but changes his outlook after being given the fake locket. Suddenly, he treated Hermione better, worked for Harry, and even fought against Voldemort and his Death Eaters in the Battle of Hogwarts. It’s certainly more interesting than just watching him mope around Grimmauld Place.

#7: Book: Cho Never Betrays Dumbledore’s Army

Movie: Cho Betrays Dumbledore’s Army

Cho Chang served a relatively minor role until it exploded in “Order of the Phoenix.” In this novel, she stood by Harry through his proclamations that Voldemort had returned, and joined Dumbledore’s Army to avenge Cedric. She soon grew a somewhat awkward attachment to Harry, but whatever connection they shared was obliterated when she defended her friend, Marietta Edgecombe, after she betrayed the Army. In the movie, it is Cho herself who unintentionally betrays the Army, which in turn ruins their relationship. We suppose it all leads to the same place, but it’s interesting to note how the film’s exclusion of Marietta impacts the character of Cho.

#6: Book: Rita Skeeter Is an Animagus

Movie: There Is No Mention of Her Being an Animagus

Rita Skeeter makes an all too brief appearance in “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire,” and while the movie retains her slimy personality and journalistic dishonesty, there is absolutely no mention whatsoever that she is an unregistered Animagus. In the book, it is revealed that Skeeter transforms into a beetle to access various locations and obtain juicy information that she then publishes in her articles. This isn’t exactly necessary to reveal in the movie, which significantly cuts her character and her defamatory articles, but it’s still an interesting character trait that non-readers would never know.

#5: Book: Harry and Ginny Share Their First Kiss in the Gryffindor Common Room

Movie: They Kiss in the Room of Requirement

“The Half-Blood Prince” is one of the more…polarizing films in the series, to say the least. While many people have defended the movie for its gorgeous visuals, others bemoan the numerous omissions from the novel. For one thing, the entire relationship between Harry and Ginny was painfully rushed, and it resulted in a very awkward on-screen couple. In the movie, Ginny and Harry share their first kiss in the Room of Requirement (without an explanation as to what happened with Dean) rather than in the Gryffindor Common Room in front of Ron. It results in a relationship that comes across as very boring and hesitant rather than confident and energetic.

#4: Book: A Lot of Time and Meaning Is Given to The Half-Blood Prince

Movie: Who?

Okay, the entire movie is named after The Half-Blood Prince, so why is it given all of five minutes of screen time? In the novel, the characters make a huge deal out of the Prince, and he becomes a major source of mystery. In the climax, it is revealed to be Snape, who defiantly took the name from his mother, Eileen Prince. In the movie, the Prince is barely mentioned, and Snape’s admission is completely meaningless. Not only does Snape not yell at Harry for calling him a coward, but we also never learn of the meaning behind the moniker. Are we just supposed to assume that Snape fancied himself a Prince or something?

#3: Book: Dumbledore Is Given a Dark and Evil Background

Movie: Dumbledore’s Background Is Barely Mentioned

The “Harry Potter” series began with a rather black and white outlook on the wizarding world, but the lines were increasingly blurred as the series progressed. Throughout the final novel, we learn that the otherwise pure and noble Dumbledore had some rather supremacist ideals regarding wizards. He partnered with an extremely dark and powerful wizard named Grindelwald, and the two planned to make Muggles submissive to the superior wizarding race. He also resented his reclusive sister Ariana and may have accidentally murdered her in a duel with his own brother. These events are quickly glossed over, or omitted entirely, in the film, and it significantly cheapens and purifies the otherwise complex character of Dumbledore.

#2: Book: The Prophecy May Have Been About Neville

Movie: This Is Never Explained

Chalk Neville up as another casualty of the significant cuts to character development, as one of the most tantalizing aspects of his backstory is completely absent from the films. In the books, it’s explained that Neville may have been the subject of Trelawney’s prophecy, which instigated Voldemort’s attack on Harry. Trelawney drops various clues throughout her prophecy to which Neville fits, including his parents thrice defying Voldemort, and Neville being born at the end of July. While the two boys fit the description, Voldemort chose to attack Harry as he, like Voldemort, was a half-blood. But who needs that kind of information, right?

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.

Book: Arthur Destroys the Dursley House

Movie: The Dursleys Don’t Even Appear

Book: Quirrell’s Body Is Burned So Badly That Voldemort Leaves Him to Die

Movie: Quirrell Collapses into Dust

Book: Dumbledore Has a Funeral

Movie: Dumbledore’s Funeral is Omitted

#1: Book: Ron Is Intelligent and Brave

Movie: Ron is Spineless

The Weasleys really get the short end of the stick in the movies. Not only is Percy’s character arc completely omitted, but most of Ron’s redeeming qualities are either cut or given to other characters, leaving him a whimpering, goofy mess. For example, rather than defending Hermione when Snape calls her an “insufferable know-it-all,” he agrees with him. Another notable example is the Devil’s Snare scene. In the book, he tells Hermione to use magic against the Snare, whereas in the movie he simply screams like a cowardly buffoon. We suppose somebody involved wanted Ron to serve as the comic relief, because that’s really all he is in the movies, and it’s a damn shame.

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