Netflix U.K. has changed the ending of 2004's The Notebook and fans are freaking out. The movie, which is an adaptation of the 1996 novel by Nicholas Sparks, is a romantic classic. And since it's 15-years old, just about everybody knows how the movie ends. If you haven't seen The Notebook, you might want to stop here. The movie ends with both main elderly characters dying together, holding hands, but that's not what happens when Netflix subscribers in the U.K. stream it. And this new altered version may be heading to the U.S.
The Notebook being streamed in the U.K. omits the dying in bed together scene and skips to some birds flying in the sky, which is in the original ending, but not until the bodies are discovered. People on social media are not happy with the change and have been very vocal. Additionally, the movie is set to hit Netflix in North America this Friday, March 1st, and people are wondering which version of the movie that will be featured. One person on social media had this to say.
"Why has Netflix U.K. changed the ending to The Notebook!? I was going to watch it but now I'm going to need to buy it instead."
Author Nicholas Sparks was recently asked about The Notebook Netflix controversy during an interview. While the new ending is closer to what happens in the book, fans of the movie are not happy about the change at all. Sparks had this to say.
"For me, it's an opinion thing. Hey, it's a different ending; you're definitely going to have an opinion on it one way or the other."
When pressed further about his own opinion, Sparks said, "I like the original film! I like the original." The author didn't really seem to mind all that much, but that might have to do with the ending of the source material.
As for how this could have happened in the first place, it has been revealed that Netflix actually licensed The Notebook, which is pretty rare for the streaming platform and may have given them permission to make a new edit to the ending. However, it is not clear why the ending of a 15-year old romantic classic has been changed after all of this time. It is also possible that they were not aware that they put up a version with an alternate ending. Some even speculate that the end is just too much for some very sensitive millennials to handle, so it was altered as to not cause emotional distress, with Netflix intending to be sensitive to its younger audience. But that is just a rumor right now.
Netflix has yet to respond to the matter, but it is going to be very interesting if The Notebook arrives on the streaming platform in North America this week with the alternate ending. For now, the issue is only occurring in the U.K. In other The Notebook news, it was revealed earlier this year that a Broadway musical with a book by Bekah Brunstetter and music and lyrics by Ingrid Michaelson is on the way with Nicholas Sparks' involvement. Keep an eye on Netflix to see if there are any changes.