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Michael Mann is having quite a week. In addition to beginning production on his star-studded film “Ferrari” this week in Italy, the director’s first novel, “Heat 2,” a sequel to his epic 1995 crime epic, is topping bestseller lists.
Written alongside veteran thriller writer Meg Gardiner, the book reprises the complex characters featured in the original film, namely the professional thief Neil McCauley (Robert De Niro) and LAPD detective Vincent Hanna (Al Pacino). Although the film ends with Hanna’s murder of McCauley at the end of his years-long investigation, the pair had created an inexplicable bond through their catch-and-kill dynamic that’s further explored in the book’s prequel scenes. One of the most revelatory plot points is the revelation that Hanna and McCauley unknowingly crossed paths in a previous major heist before they met each other.
The 466-page tome, which serves as both a sequel and prequel, also delves into other crime stories that center previously peripheral characters such as Chris Shiherlis, played by Val Kilmer in the film. The action cuts back and forth between 1988, when McCauley is still alive, to events that take place in the film’s aftermath.
Mann’s research for “Heat” began as early as 1970 when he heard about the real-life relationship between Chicago detective Chuck Adamson and the original McCauley, which the film character is based off of. He first used the premise for his 1989 TV movie “L.A. Takedown” before releasing the three-hour movie “Heat” six years later.
“Heat 2” is the first book in a multi-million dollar book deal between Mann and Harper Collins. Although there has been no official greenlight, it’s rumored that Mann plans to adapt the new book into a sequel film. In the meantime, you can stream the original film on Hulu and purchase “Heat 2” below. Check out more books being adapted into TV shows and movies here.