Tom Cruise Is Flying In Top Gun 2, Just Not In The Way You’d Think

Tom Cruise in Top Gun
(Image credit: (Paramount Pictures))

In the Mission: Impossible films, we've watched Tom Cruise perform some jaw-dropping stunts of his own, including his most recent death-defying, high-altitude, low-opening jump out of a plane in this summer's sixth installment, Fallout. So when reports surfaced yesterday about Top Gun: Maverick halting production in order for Cruise to learn to personally fly Navy fighter jets in the film, it wasn't a far-fetched undertaking for us to see the actor to pull off next.

In response to yesterday's chatter about the Top Gun sequel, Entertainment Weekly spoke to sources from Paramount to clear the skies on whether Tom Cruise is getting in the pilot's seat of some military-grade fighter jets for the project. The sources assured that Top Gun: Maverick is still on schedule with shooting until this spring and Cruise couldn't fly the F/A-18 Hornets even if he wanted to, because civilians just aren't allowed to. However, Cruise is a licensed pilot, has completed extensive training for his return to his iconic Top Gun role and the actor will do some flying in "certain aircrafts."

While Paramount debunks much of yesterday's reports, it does in turn confirm that it wasn't entirely false, as Tom Cruise will be flying an aircraft himself of some sort for the upcoming sequel. News of the production being delayed didn't add up since the film had already been pushed back a full year than previously expected from 2019 to 2020. Paramount's comments are exciting for fans of the actor's stunt work and of a franchise that began with the beloved 1986 film. In the original film, the actors did make it in the air for their fighter jet scenes, but only acted like they were flying the jets themselves.

Top Gun: Maverick will take place over 30 years after the events of the first film, this time with Tom Cruise as an instructor at the Top Gun flight school. Val Kilmer is also reprising his role as Iceman amongst a packed cast including Jennifer Connelly, Jon Hamm and Ed Harris. Cruise's Maverick will become the mentor of the late Goose's son, played by Miles Teller. The film is helmed by Oblivion director Joseph Kosinski and shooting began in late September.

Following the high-flying success of Top Gun, one would imagine chances are good for the sequel to be a big hit. The original was the highest grossing film of 1986 and became a pop culture phenomenon, namely for its unforgettable soundtrack. Once you add in the incredible stunt work Tom Cruise has always amazed audiences with in the Mission: Impossible movies, the film is sure to bring in some more excitement for the sequel. Top Gun: Maverick is still some ways away, as it doesn't come to theaters until June 26, 2020.

Sarah El-Mahmoud
Staff Writer

Sarah El-Mahmoud has been with CinemaBlend since 2018 after graduating from Cal State Fullerton with a degree in Journalism. In college, she was the Managing Editor of the award-winning college paper, The Daily Titan, where she specialized in writing/editing long-form features, profiles and arts & entertainment coverage, including her first run-in with movie reporting, with a phone interview with Guillermo del Toro for Best Picture winner, The Shape of Water. Now she's into covering YA television and movies, and plenty of horror. Word webslinger. All her writing should be read in Sarah Connor’s Terminator 2 voice over.