Heat wasn’t a box office smash when it was released in 1995, but it didn’t take long for it to become a home video phenomenon. Last year writer-director Michael Mann even released a sequel — not as a film but as a novel, called, simply, Heat 2. It would be impossible to make with its original cast, for various reasons. Still, Mann expressed hope that a film, even with a new cast, could be done. Now it appears the wheels are in motion.
Deadline reports that Warner Bros., who released the original, is in talks to handle the nearly 30-years-later sequel, with Mann returning (though it’s unclear if he’ll direct as well). There have been lots of rumors about who could play who, but right now there’s ony one name officially on the table: Adam Driver, who stars in Mann’s next film, Ferrari. If all works out, Driver would take on young Neil McCauley, the professional thief played by Robert De Niro.
Will Al Pacino, who played LAPD detective Vincent Hanna, get his wish and have Timothée Chalamet play the younger him? Who’s to say. There has been lots of rumors or simply fan talk of bringing Pacino back, presumably with the de-aging CGI that made him decades younger in Martin Scorsese’s own Pacino-De Niro picture, The Irishman. But so far the only credible rumors involve Mann and Driver.
Heat 2 was released last summer to rave reviews and strong sales. Written by Mann and Meg Gardiner, the book is both a sequel and a prequel, beginning in the immediate aftermath of Neil’s death then jumping around in time, even showing the characters when they were younger. Mann and Gardiner could do that because it was a book, and in a book you can do anything. But movies are magic, too. They’re just trickier to pull off.