Therin of Andor wrote:
The novelizations of both II AND III had a lot in them that was cut from the final films. The whole Saavik/David subplot being the biggest chunk.
Fairer to say that Vonda McIntyre did lots of extrapolation as she wrote the novelizations. There was never any scripts that had actual romance between Saavik and David, just suggestive cut-away shots, posed publicity stills, etc, in much the same way as Meyer shot the alternative version of the ST II elevator scene, to suggest (in some takes) that Saavik and Kirk
Uhura's expanded part in the breakout of McCoy and the theft of the Enterprise was the other one.(Not only did she provide covert transport to the ship, but she hacked Starfleet Communications and scrambled them up so badly that only the Excelsior even knew about the attempt for some time. THEN she made a run for the Vulcan embassy.)
Again, this wasn't scripted.
My understanding is that novelization writers work from at least a semi-final version of the script. Sometimes a major rewrite strikes portions of it or substantially alters them.
I know that at least one late version of the script of WoK (for example) has Saavik teasing David on the bridge in the final scene about "indeed being a bastard", which was part of the David/Saavik subplot.
Obviously THAT didn't make it into the final cut either.
*EDIT* FOUND IT! Link to the semi-final script...read the David/Saavik interactions, esp in the final scene:
They also have the script for TSFS, which doesn't have the Uhura material, but has more matieral continuing the David/Saavik arc.
It's also interesting that the TSFS script has the original plot configuration, OPENING with the discovery of Spock's torpedo, etc, which closes a LOT of the plotholes that developed in the final version>
It also has a reference to the "Hall of Ancient Thought"