"The book was better" is the common maxim you hear coming out of whatever Blockbuster was playing in the theatre. This was especially true in decades past, before Marvel and Star Wars were the hottest properties of the summer season and whatever was flying off the shelves of the airport bookstore was the summer's surefire hit.
A lot of major 90s Blockbusters, or films that attempted to be such, were based off source material. Fitting, considering the first of its kind, Jaws, came from similar stock. But in the process of distilling 500-1,000 pages into a two-hour crowd-pleaser, oftentimes characters and even entire plots require excision.
This isn't always a necessary evil, in fact some adaptations benefit from their distillation of distinct themes while not getting bogged down in what another medium would be superfluous. And as a result, sometimes characters even get expanded upon. We've tried to avoid the big name examples for this list (save for two) but is no shortage of novels that mostly are in tune with the director's vision except the end.
Then there are other works that live beyond the adaption, novels that carry the franchises' characters further than the screen...only to have them meet their eventual brutal death.
Here are the ways some characters you might remember fondly were cruelly brutalized elsewhere in media.
Kenny Hedges is carbon-based.
So I suppose a simple top 5 in no order will do: Halloween, Crimes and Misdemeanors, L.A. Confidential, Billy Liar, Blow Out
He has his own website - thefilmreal.com - and is always looking for new writers with differing views to broaden the discussion.