After Historic Opening Weekend, Tom Cruise Thanked Top Gun: Maverick Fans

Tom Cruise pumps his fist in excitement in Top Gun: Maverick.
(Image credit: Paramount)

It’s been over 35 years since moviegoers rushed into theaters to see Tom Cruise play Navy fighter pilot "Maverick" in Top Gun. After the pandemic caused many delays in its sequel Top Gun: Maverick getting a theatrical release, it finally came to us on May 27th with fans of this generation and the old rushing back into theaters again for this long-awaited sequel. After becoming the seventh-highest box office hit of 2022, Tom Cruise has no one to thank for that record but the fans who made it happen.

For the past few years, Top Gun’s Tom Cruise has been wanting to make its sequel for the thrill of getting to riding a real jet again as he did in the ‘80s. He even let fans know that this movie was made just for them and hoped they would enjoy the ride. After accomplishing a historic weekend box office record, Tom Cruise made sure to thank his fans on Twitter for making it happen, before sharing the tweet on his Instagram Story.

Tom Cruise's Instagram story thanking fans for Top Gun: Maverick

(Image credit: Instagram)

With the pandemic slowing down the release of this highly-anticipated sequel, the fans made their way to their seats to watch OGs like Tom Cruise and Val Kilmer as well as newcomers to the franchise like Miles Teller and Jonn Hamm. As soon as Top Gun: Maverick flew into theaters, it was already breaking records on its first day by making $51.8 million at the box office with $19.3 million from previews. This was considered the best box office opener for Tom Cruise, Paramount, and Memorial Day weekend. Not only did Top Gun: Maverick have an amazing opening day, but try best opening weekend. This action drama film managed to hit the weekend box office gross of $124 million in 4,735 theaters, surpassing Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness. It’s nice to know that the box office record tradition has continued for this sequel considering its previous film was the highest-grossing film of 1986, making $8.2 million its first weekend.

We know the theaters were pouring in for Top Gun: Maverick, but what did people think of the movie once they saw it? To put it simply- they loved it. Initial reactions to Tom Cruise’s long-awaited legacyquel had those like our own Sean O’Connell calling it “a masterful adrenaline rush” and those at Light The Fuse Podcast saying the sequel is “everything we wanted it to be and more.” The reviews from hyped-up critics absolutely loved how the film made you feel like you were in a flight simulator and that this sequel might even top the original. When a sequel comes to us three decades later, it can go either way where the sequel either honors the film or it just wasn’t necessary. Luckily, Top Gun: Maverick was the legacyquel that audiences wanted and needed in their lives as another reason to keep themselves entertained during the pandemic.

Top Gun: Maverick has not only been a pleasurable experience for the fans, but for its star as well. Tom Cruise being able to come back to the hangar and donning close to the original uniform again was considered an absolutely wild experience for him. He was honored by the Navy ahead of its release with Cruise and producer Jerry Bruckheimer receiving the same Wings of Gold given to actual Naval Aviators. The Mission: Impossible actor also got a standing ovation at Top Gun: Maverick’s Cannes premiere before the movie was even shown. 

Tom Cruise is not short of love coming back to the role that helped make him a household name. Be sure to see the newly released movie Top Gun: Maverick hit the skies in theaters now.

Carly Levy
Entertainment Writer

Just your average South Floridian cinephile who believes the pen is mightier than the sword.