Ideally, the novel and its film version are meant to complement each other. On many levels, it is the same case with To Kill a Mockingbird. Nevertheless, the film is capable of accomplishing things that a novel is incapable of, and also the same case applies to the novel. Again, while a film has some limitations, the novel does not have any. This objective of this paper is to explore some differences that arise between the novel and the film To Kill a Mockingbird.
Normally, a movie has limited time to tell its story. This makes it concentrate on the events of the story using fewer characters. The movie version of a novel often combines the characters in the novel and their actions. A good example in To Kill a Mockingbird arises where Miss Stephanie, who is the aunt to Dill, together with Cecil Jacobs, make Scout break the promise she had made Atticus concerning fighting. In the movie, Aunt Alexandria totally absent, and, therefore, the matter of Scout behaving like a lady does not play a key role in the film (Foote, Pakula, Mulligan, Peck, Badham, Alford, Lee, 1998).
Another difference is that sometimes a film introduces new characters with the aim of assisting in the development of the storyline. In the film, Jem and Scout hold a conversation concerning their dead mother (Lee, 1960). The movie brings their mother alive for the viewers to see while the book only uses one paragraph to talk about her. The movie also enables the viewers to meet the father and children of Tom Robinson. The father is not even mentioned in the novel while the children are only mentioned briefly.
Since the movie has limited time dedicated to telling the story, the events found in the novel are often dropped in the movie version of the novel.