Michael Mann plans to adapt his sequel novel Heat 2 in a movie, but in recasting Al Pacino, Robert De Niro and Val Kilmer, he faces a nearly impossible challenge. the original Heat had a long journey to reach the big screen, with Mann writing the screenplay in the late 70s. He didn’t plan to direct it, however, and offered it to Walter Hill (48 hours), which passed. Mann later resurrected Heat as a planned television series following its success in producing miami vice. Renowned Teardown of LAMann himself shot a condensed version of the script as a pilot in just 19 days.
The pilot then aired as a stand-alone TV movie in 1989, although NBC dropped the series after it was unhappy with Mann’s casting as Hanna’s lead role, Scott Plank. After his success with a radical historical epic The Last of the Mohicans – which is not on Netflix, Hulu or Prime – Mann finally came up Heat as he always imagined. Heat is now considered one of the greatest crime films ever made and is famous for pairing Al Pacino and Robert De Niro on screen for the first time. The film’s incredible set, intense shootouts, and especially its legendary dinner scene are just a few of the reasons it’s considered a classic.
The story ends on a note that doesn’t lend itself to a sequel, but Mann and co-writer Meg Gardiner revisited the film universe with their novel. Heat 2. The book has a dual timeline, taking place six years before Heat and detailing how De Niro and Kilmer’s characters came to work together and also how Pacino – who passed on De Niro’s Goodfellarole of s – Hanna pursued a killer in Chicago. The plot also moves forward in time to follow Kilmer’s Chris Shiherlis after escaping LA Mann has repeatedly stated he intends to shoot. Heat 2 in a movie, but recasting Pacino, De Niro and Kilmer is no small feat.
Who could replace Pacino, De Niro or Kilmer?
It’s been almost 30 years since the release of Heatand given the prequel elements of Heat 2, that would mean that if Pacino and De Niro returned, they would have to play characters in their 40s. Whereas The Irish’s de-aging technology allowed both actors to play younger versions of themselves, this process was far from seamless. There were times when the aging didn’t quite hold up to scrutiny, while the body language of both men often indicated they were much older than the age they described. Mann – who produced a forgotten gem hand band – apparently ruled out the option of Pacino and De Niro returning, saying Empire this “I love these guys, but they should be six years younger than they were in Heat.”
Kilmer’s Shiherlis plays a major role in Heat 2, although a battle with throat cancer has largely kept the actor out of speaking, which also makes it unlikely he will reprise the role. Mann will therefore have to find new actors to Heat 2, many of whom will have to follow in the footsteps of some of the greatest American actors who ever lived. It’s hard to think who could possibly fill these roles when it comes to modern-day A-list artists. Mann worked with Chris Hemsworth on Black hat, could therefore be a logical choice for the role of Shiherlis. Colin Farrell also worked with the director previously on 2006 miami vice – where Farrell has been horribly stuffed – and could make for a great younger version of De Niro’s Neil McCauley, though Pacino is arguably the toughest recast of them all.
Heat features some of Pacino’s most memorable line readings and scenes, and his voice is unmistakable. Mann’s best bet might be to throw in a heavy hitter like Oscar Issac or Josh Brolin and let them put their own stamp on the play. Either way, recasting a film with one of the most acclaimed ensembles of all time is no easy task, and Mann’s casting director Heat 2 – assuming that happens – has an almost impossible challenge.