Viral Austin Butler video intensifies Heat 2 speculation

Viral Austin Butler video intensifies Heat 2 speculation

A viral video of Austin Butler in training for a film has intensified speculation he will be in Heat 2.

Ever since it was announced that Michael Mann would adapt a prequel and sequel to his 1995 hit film, fans of the original have predicted who could play the younger versions of characters played by Robert De Niro, Al Pacino and Val Kilmer.

It’s been claimed for some time that Driver, who recently worked with Mann on Ferrari, would play a younger version of De Niro’s villain, Neil McCauley.

It’s unknown who will officially play the younger version of Pacino’s detective, Vincent Hanna, but the actor himself namechecked Timothée Chalamet as a potential idea, and also told The Independent he would be up for starring in the film using de-ageing effects.

It has also been reported that Butler, star of Elvis and Dune: Part 2, will play Chris Shiherlis, the role originally made famous by Kilmer. In the book the film is based on, written by Mann and Meg Gardiner, Shiherlis features in scenes that directly follow on from events seen in the original.

A video showing Butler training to load and fire guns with US company Taran Tactical has circulated social media, and it’s being suggested that Butler could be undergoing the training in preparation for Heat 2, which will be Mann’s next film. People are now wading into the comments section to approve of this potential casting.

“We are NOT ready for Austin Butler as Chris Shiherlis in Heat 2,” one fan wrote, with another stating: “Austin Butler would absolutely kill in HEAT 2!”

An additional post on X/Twitter read: “Just hit me with that Austin Butler Heat 2 announcement already PLEASE.”

The Independent has contacted Butler for comment.

Val Kilmer in ‘Heat’ (Warner Bros)
Val Kilmer in ‘Heat’ (Warner Bros)

During an interview with The Independent in 2019, when asked if he’d be up for using the same tech for Heat 2, Pacino, not realising the novel was a prequel, said: “You’d have to ask Michael Mann, but we wouldn’t have Bob.”

De Niro, whose character is killed off at the end of the film, interjected, telling Pacino the novel was going to be set before the events of the 1995 film. To this, Pacino replied: “You mean go younger? That I would do for sure.”

Laughing at the prospect, De Niro added: ‘Well, you never know.”