Top Gun: Maverick Director Reveals The Hardest Scene To Shoot For Tom Cruise’s Sequel, And It Might Surprise You
I remember this moment!
In an age where it’s easier for ever for blockbuster productions to simulate all sorts of things using computer-generated imagery, Top Gun: Maverick prioritized going practical whenever possible by having Tom Cruise and the actor playing his fellow pilots learning how to fly actual jets and taking to the skies. And yet, according to Maverick director Joseph Kosinski, the hardest scene to shoot in the sequel wasn’t anything aircraft-related. Quite the opposite, as it actually involved something that happened on the water.
Those of you who’ve seen Top Gun: Maverick (and if you haven’t, it can be streamed with a Paramount+ subscription) will remember a moment when Tom Cruise’s Peter “Maverick” Mitchell joins Jennifer Connelly’s Penny Benjamin as she sails her boat to the “yard” to get its engine fixed. Maverick may be a whiz when it comes to flying planes, but it’s abundantly clear in this scene that he’s out of his element when traveling across the waves, though Penny does a good job instructing him on what to do. As for why the sailing scene was so challenging to shoot, Joseph Kosinski said the following to Vulture:
So this wasn’t just a matter of shooting Tom Cruise and Jennifer Connelly off one area of the California coast over a few takes. Joseph Kosinski and his crew had to shoot this sequence across multiple locations over the span of a few weeks, and throwing in the wind complications and Kosinski himself doing his best just to keep his balance on the other boat, it’s understandable why this was quite the ordeal. The filmmaker continued:
Tom Cruise and his fellow actors went through a lot of training to fly in Top Gun: Maverick, so it says a lot that the sailing scene was the most “dangerous” one to shoot. If you need a reminder about how the final product turned out, rewatch it below:
It’s been almost a year since Top Gun: Maverick arrived in theaters and spent much of 2022 as the highest-grossing movie of the year, although Avatar: The Way of Water (which comes out on digital release at the end of March) ultimately surpassed it. Now we’re just a few days away from seeing how Maverick does among the other 2023 Oscar nominees, with the sequel competing in the Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Original Song, Best Sound, Best Film Editing and Best Visual Effects categories. Maverick producer Jerry Bruckheimer has also shared why he thinks there’s a chance Top Gun 3 could happen, though no discussions have happened with Tom Cruise about that yet.
Find out how Top Gun: Maverick does at the 95th Academy Awards by tuning in to ABC Sunday, March 12 at 8 pm ET. After that, Tom Cruise can next be seen on the big screen in Mission: Impossible — Dead Reckoning: Part One, which opens on July 14 among the 2023 new movie releases.
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