Are there any differences between movie novelizations and the movies they’re based on?

The short answer is yes, but not always. While there are many movie novelizations that don’t deviate much from the original film they’re based on, there are plenty of others that contain wildly “off script” material that you might find surprising. Because movie novelizations are often written before a movie is finished filming, or based on early versions of the script, it will sometimes include deleted scenes that may not actually end up in the theatrical release of the film.

A classic example of this phenomenon is the movie novelization for the 1985 movie, The Goonies. This novelized version of The Goonies contains “deleted scenes” that were filmed but were cut from the final production (such as the infamous giant octopus attack) but it also contains scenes that were in the script but were never actually filmed. As both fans of movies and collectors of books based on movies, this is one of the biggest thrills of collecting movie novelizations! It’s always fascinating to stumble across written chapters of a new scene that was never part of the original film, especially if it’s a film you love and know well. It’s like getting bonus material!