Heat 2 Officially In Development With Adam Driver And Director Michael Mann

This is not a drill: "Heat 2" may finally be happening. That's right, nearly 30 years after director Michael Mann delivered one of the greatest crime films ever made with 1995's "Heat," Warner Bros. is getting behind a potential new film. What's more, none other than Adam Driver ("Star Wars: The Force Awakens," "House of Gucci") is in talks to star. And that could just be the tip of the iceberg, but we'll get to that.

The news comes to us via Deadline, who confirms rumors that have been swirling for weeks regarding the status of the project. Warner Bros. is backing the development of the film, which would be based on 2022's novel "Heat 2," which was written by Mann and Meg Gardiner (read our review of it here). Driver, meanwhile, would star as a young Neil McCauley, who was played by Robert De Niro in the original. It's worth noting that Driver is currently working with Mann on "Ferrari," which seemingly went well enough for them to collaborate again.

Other rumored casting has popped up in recent weeks, with names like Austin Butler ("Elvis") and Ana De Armas ("Blonde") being circulated. While nothing else is confirmed, Driver's good name indicates that this project could attract more big-name talent. It's also worth noting that New Regency would have the option to co-finance the film since they were part of the original production, but Warner Bros. is solely involved at this time.

Part sequel, part prequel, all Michael Mann

As fans of "Heat" may care to note, McCauley died at the end of the first film at the hands of Al Pacino's Vincent Hannah, concluding one of the greatest games of cat and mouse in cinematic history. So, how is a sequel going to be possible? Well, the novel takes an interesting approach, serving as part sequel, part prequel. Presumably, Driver would play McCauley before the events of "Heat," with another actor taking on the role of Hannah, stepping in for Pacino. There's also the matter of Val Kilmer's Chris Shiherlis, who has a major role in the novel.

For what it's worth, Mann has been very clear about the fact that he had every intention of turning the book into a film, saying last year, "It's totally planned to be a movie ... Is it a modest movie? No. Is it a very expensive series? No. It's going to be one large movie." In its day, "Heat" was a sizable hit, but that was a long time ago. Would Warner Bros. actually see this expensive movie as a good investment? On that front, the book was a best-seller and earned rave reviews, so we do have some indication that this could work commercially. Particularly if Driver is just the tip of the iceberg of an A-list cast. Here's hoping.

"Heat 2" the movie does not yet have a release date, but "Heat 2" the book is on shelves now.