Michael Mann will return to his crime-heist epic “Heat” for a sequel and prequel novel set for release later this year…
“For me, the action is the juice”
Those famous words spoken by Tom Sizemore in the 1995 crime-heist epic “Heat” will live on forever and now Michael Mann is returning to that world with a new novel that will serve as both a prequel and sequel to the original film.
Mann announced the news on Wednesday with “Heat 2” set for release on August 9 with a novel he penned alongside Edgar winner Meg Gardiner.
“It’s been my intention for a long time to do the further stories of Heat,” Mann told Deadline. “There was always a rich history or back-story about the events in these people’s lives before 1995 in Heat and projection of where their lives would take them after.”
Watch the trailer for “Heat 2” below
— Michael Mann (@MichaelMann) January 19, 2022
“Heat” is regarded as one of the greatest crime thrillers in history — and arguably the best heist movie of all time — which features the first ever on screen scene shared between legendary actors Al Pacino and Robert DeNiro. The film follows the cat-and-mouse game between Pacino’s gritty homicide detective Vincent Hanna and a crew led by DeNiro as master criminal Neil McCauley. The film was filled with ‘A’ list co-stars including Val Kilmer, Jon Voight, Ashley Judd, Danny Trejo and Natalie Portman.
The upcoming “Heat 2” novel will feature all of those characters as Mann will take a look into their lives in the six years preceding the events in the original film as well as six years after the bank robbery gone wrong that eventually leads to Hanna shooting McCauley in the final moments of the movie.
“Heat 2” begins just a day after the heist as a wounded Chris Shiherlis (played by Val Kilmer) attempts to escape out of Los Angeles as the only surviving member of his criminal crew. According to Deadline, the new book will feature venues that “range from the streets of L.A. to the inner sanctums of rival Taiwanese crime syndicates in a South American free trade zone, to a massive drug cartel money-laundering operation just over the border in Mexico, and eventually to Southeast Asia.”
Part of the backstory that will be told in the prequel will involve Hanna’s time as a cop in Chicago where he helped take down some major crews as referenced in the original film. The prequel will also detail McCauley and Shiherlis in the six years prior to the bank robbery as they set up the crew that will go onto pull off these daring heists in Los Angeles.
The book will also feature the return of Tom Noonan’s character from “Heat” where he played Kelso — a wheelchair bound criminal, who puts out the score on the bank that McCauley’s crew eventually attempts to rob.
“The bank job was not the first time Kelso worked with McCauley, and not the last time he will work with Chris,” Mann revealed.
The book will detail McCauley’s time in prison, where he formed a bond with Chris before the events of the film, as well as Chris’ own history with a mother who was institutionalized as well as his relationship with Charlene, who was previously a high priced call girl in Las Vegas.
Mann was methodical with his research when making the original “Heat” including when he consulted real police officers when orchestrating the final heist and eventual gun fight between the crooks and the cops in the streets of Los Angeles, which is widely regarded as one of the greatest action sequences in film history.
It appears Mann put forth the same kind of effort when putting together the stories for the upcoming “Heat 2” novel that will carry on the story from one of his best films.
“My way of working with a project involves immersing into the culture of the subject and accumulating a lot of detailed first-hand impressions and information,” Mann said. “I want to know and feel that culture and the lives of the people in it.
“Methods, attitudes, and family values. I like to navigate these environments and operate within them. There’s an authenticity discoverable there that I believe resonates with audiences as real and true.”
“Heat 2” will be released worldwide on August 9 from HarperCollins books.