We watched Beautiful Creatures last night, I've read the book and even I was confused at points. Extra ideas were added, large amounts were cut.

From memory

  • Marilyn and Ama's characters were merged
  • Macon was made a caster instead of an incubus
  • Boo Radley didn't appear at all
  • Ethan found the necklace at a different time
  • Ethan played football instead of basketball
  • Larkin didn't surprise us at the end
  • Ethan's father didn't appear at all (this again led to a changed ending)
  • The scene where Macon read Ethan's future didn't occur in the book
  • The entire idea of Ethan losing his memory didn't happen in the book
  • Emily and Ethan didn't date in the book

Compared with book adaptations such as Harry Potter and Twilight it seemed to change a massive amount from the book. Why is this?

  • You ask great questions @Liath! Very thought provoking. I have many ideas and theories as to why this is, but these are only theories. Another movie where the plot was twisted severely from the book was Eragon. The movie left some very key points out which would not allow for the subsequent books to be made into movies. This, from a business standpoint, seems counter-intuitive. Many book publishers love trilogies (or multiple book series) ... I would assume movie producers would have the same want and desire. I never read Beautiful Creatures, so other than what you said, I've nothing to go on. Aug 5, 2013 at 11:58
  • fantasist movie and the book does not compare
    – user6557
    Oct 29, 2013 at 0:59
  • One major issue I found with the movie, was the idea of the Sixteen moons songs. From memory I think they're might have been played sometime during the movie however, it was never emphasised. Throughout the entire book, the song was the story and the central theme, it outlaid all the clues, and connections, leading to the ending where he realises his Mum is still with him. It also leaves it open for the next book in which she doesn't choose to be light or dark, and therefore starts the singing of the song seventeen moons. Also, Ethan was suppose to die, because she was suppose to bring him bac
    – user8133
    Feb 18, 2014 at 4:46

2 Answers 2


I think it could boil down to any of several different reasons:

  1. Writer of the original book was not involved in the making of the movie, and therefor the movie script takes different directions than the book.
  2. Producer thinks they know better and forces divergent changes in the script. (Same could be said for the director, or as in #1, where the script writer diverges from the book.)
  3. Time limitations. There is usually way too much in a book to portray on the screen (which is usually the reason for sequenced movie production ... besides the desire to make more money).
  4. Sometimes there is no easy way to translate a book from page to screen. Production costs could figure in here somewhere.
  5. Sometimes what someone understands while reading a book is not exactly what is happening. Two people could read a portion of the book and come up with two completely thoughts as to what is happening. When this gets up on the screen, it could be shown as a completely different third thing. I'm not saying this happened here, but interpretation plays a role in any production.

I'm sure there are a plethora of other reasons scripts could diverge from their book counterparts. Why exactly Beautiful Creatures diverged will probably remain a mystery along with all of the other movies out there which have taken the divergent plunge. Sometimes the changes make sense ... other times it leaves you scratching your head like you have done here.

  • 1
    I've voted this up because it's such a good response but I don't want to accept it as the answer because it's largely based on (logical) opinions and not primary sources.
    – Liath
    Aug 7, 2013 at 9:16
  • Completely understand ... I would hope someone comes up with a complete answer for you, something which shows why exactly in this case. Like I said, it's a great question. Too bad they feel it necessary to diverge so greatly. Aug 7, 2013 at 10:13

This response is more then probably late, but majority of the big chunks that were cut would have EASILY pushed the movies rating over PG-13 standing the creators wanted. Though this isn't a big enough excuse for all the cuts I feel this PG-13 desire held back a fair bit of the book.

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