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Heat Director Addresses His 2015 Box Office Bomb (& Fires Back At One Criticism)-TGN


  • Director Michael Mann admits that the script for Blackhat was not ready to shoot, taking responsibility for the movie’s shortcomings.
  • Mann defends the movie’s accuracy, stating that it accurately portrays cyber-crime despite some critics labeling it as fantasy.
  • Despite Blackhat‘s disappointing performance, Mann has continued to work on new projects and is still regarded as a highly acclaimed director in the industry.

Director Michael Mann, who helmed Heat and Collateral, recently addressed some criticism his 2015 film Blackhat amassed. Centered around a convicted hacker named Nicholas Hathaway (Chris Hemsworth), the thriller follows Nicholas’ journey to eliminate a cyber-criminal threat after he is released from prison to help authorities. Although the movie had a budget of over $70 million, it made only $19.7 million at the box office.

Speaking with Variety, Mann shared that, in hindsight, the Blackhat script was “not ready to shoot,which he cites as his own responsibility. While he would not change a single frame of some of his acclaimed movies, Mann expressed his willingness to edit Blackhat (which he ultimately did a year after the film’s release). One pushback he did have against film critics, however, was how they defined the movie’s genre. Although some viewers called Blackhat fantasy, he sees it as “stone-cold accurate.” See the full extent of Mann’s comments below:

“It’s my responsibility. The script was not ready to shoot. The subject may have been ahead of the curve, because there were a number of people who thought this was all fantasy. Wrong. Everything is stone-cold accurate… I’ve revised ‘Last of the Mohicans’ three times, and now it’s shorter than the original.”

What Happened To Mann After Blackhat

The movie’s level of technical terminology likely resulted in viewers unfamiliar with cyberattacks to label Blackhat as fantasy. For instance, the speed at which the hacking scenes flash by may have given audiences the impression that the hacking feats occurred nearly instantaneously and with ease. Although Mann may have been attuned to hacking idiosyncrasies, conveying the scenes’ realism simply through shots of characters fixed on computers may not have optimally explained hacking to viewers.

Since 2015, Mann has continued to develop projects, including the upcoming Ferrari, an Enzo Ferrari biopic starring Adam Driver. Notably, Mann was also credited as an executive producer for the 2019 Oscar-nominated Ford v Ferrari. Set to release on December 25, 2023, Ferrari will be his first major movie under a director role since Blackhat.

While Blackhat may not have been Mann’s most successful project, he still has a decades-long career of creating critically praised films and continues to be a major player in the movie world today. With Oscar nominations for Best Director and Best Picture under his belt, much anticipation surrounds his upcoming projects.

Source: Variety

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