Michael Mann Wants to Adapt Heat 2 Into a Movie

Heat is one of the best-received crime movies ever made, and now it's getting a sequel novel..and almost certainly a follow-up movie as well. More than 25 years after its initial release, Heat 2 is expected in bookstores soon, and in an interview with Empire magazine, writer/director Michael Mann revealed that he conceived the novel with a movie in mind, and that the book is "totally planned to be a movie." Unfortunately for hardcore fans, it seems likely the sequel will be recast, in part because the project would require a significant participation from Val Kilmer otherwise.

Reinventing the concept of Heat from the ground up is nothing new for Mann. Based on the real-life relationship between Chicago cop Chuck Adamson and career criminal Neil McCauley, Mann created a cat-and-mouse project called L.A. Takedown, which was released in 1989 and starred The Walking Dead's Michael Rooker. Not content with how that version came out, he rewrote the same basic story, recast, and out came Heat.

To be fair, L.A. Takedown was a TV movie, intended to be Mann's follow-up to Miami Vice, so it was never going to be the same kind of movie you can make with Al Pacino and Robert DeNiro.

You can see a pretty great video providing insight into the creation of Heat below.

According to Empire, the book utilizes a Godfather Part II approach, with the movie having both prequel and sequel elements. It will center primarily on  Lt. Vincent Hanna (the character played by Robert DeNiro) and Chris Shiherlis (Kilmer). 

"Is it a modest movie? No. Is it a very expensive series? No," Mann told Empire, acknowledging the project is going to be different from most of what you see coming from streaming platforms. "It's going to be one large movie."

In spite of being unlike anything that studios are currently banging down the doors for, Mann is not concerned about getting the film financed. After all -- it's a sequel to Heat, from the director of the original!


"It's sustained in culture,"  Mann said. "It's known. I could delude myself into thinking that the whole world is familiar with it, but when you check out its prominence in home vid for over 20 years, this thing really has legs. People are still watching it, people are still talking about it. It's a brand. It's kind of a Heat universe, in a way. And that certainly justifies a very large ambitious movie."

Would you be excited to see a Heat 2 from Michael Mann? Are you planning to read the book when it hits stores next month? Sound off in the comments below.