Adapting a series of books comes with plenty of challenges. Striking the right balance between change and continuity is tricky, and it’s impossible to please everyone, especially when there are so many dedicated fans out there.
The Harry Potter movies are no exception. Whilst the set designs, the casting, and the soundtrack are practically perfect, Harry’s movie adventures are much shorter than their literary counterparts, and this often affects the characters in a negative way.
Sometimes, the movies give us a diluted version of a particular character. This could be a villain who’s less evil than they should be or a hero who’s bland and underdeveloped. But there are also some characters whose personalities were completely lost in the adaptation process. Rather than being a simplified version of the character in the books, they were totally different.
Given the exceptional character work in J.K. Rowling’s seven-part saga, these shortcomings are understandable, as it was always going to be hard to match the quality of the originals. But it’s still frustrating to see some of our favourite characters fall short of their on-screen potential.
10. Fleur Delacour
Fleur Delacour is a French witch from the Beauxbatons Academy of Magic, who first makes an appearance in Harry’s fourth adventure when she competes in the Triwizard Tournament.
If you’ve only seen the movies, there isn’t much more to say about this character. She fills up the numbers for the tournament, but she’s the least memorable of the Triwizard Champions.
But it’s a different story in the books. Whilst it would be a stretch to call Fleur a villain, she has a much nastier – and more memorable – personality. With an abundance of beauty and confidence, she struts around the castle and jumps at any opportunity to criticise what’s in front of her. As well as complaining about the food and the decorations, she mocks Harry by calling him a “little boy” and disrespects Dumbledore by laughing during one of his speeches.
Fleur also shows up in The Half-Blood Prince as Bill Weasley’s wife-to-be. It’s a small part of the story, but there’s some great tension between Fleur and the other members of the Weasley family, particularly Mrs Weasley. Yet in the movies, these moments are cut out.
As a minor character, Fleur’s lack of screen time is understandable, but there’s no denying how much better she is in the books.