One Of The Biggest Challenges To Filming Top Gun: Maverick With Tom Cruise, According To The Director

Of all the blockbuster movies that fans are waiting for after all the delays, one of the most anticipated has to be Top Gun: Maverick. It's a sequel that, for decades, fans never thought they would actually see. The decision to make a new Top Gun was certainly not taken lightly. The project was in development hell for years. Tom Cruise made it clear that if the movie was made at all, it would need to be done practically, by getting the actors up in the air just as it was done for the original film. But doing that, according to director Joe Kosinski, was no easy task.

In a new video, the director of Top Gun: Maverick explains that one of the greatest challenges of the film was figuring out how to get the shots the movie would need of the pilots in the air, and in the cockpit. As it turns out, getting the shots meant working with Sony to develop a digital movie camera that was small enough to fit inside the cockpit of an F-18, in fact, there are several of the cameras in place in order to get every shot that they needed. As Joe Kosinski explained...

On Top Gun: Maverick it was all about: How do we get movie cameras inside an F-18 Superhornet with Tom Cruise? … my cinematographer that I work with a lot, Claudio Miranda, and I had been working with Sony. We tested and worked with them to develop The Rialto, it’s called, which is a very small version of the Venice. It was of a size that we could then start to fit into a fighter jet. So, for Top Gun: [Maverick] we managed to fit six of those in a cockpit, four facing the actor and two facing forward.

When filming any normal scene, a cinematographer would shoot the scene multiple times, all from different angles and lengths, to be able to give an editor the ability to put the different shots together in a variety of ways. But one expects that, when it came to shooting inside fighter jets, there wasn't the time to go through every scene multiple times. In many cases we're talking about getting multiple jets in the air together and you probably can't spend all day just doing that over and over again.

And so, by having multiple cameras in place, you can get every angle you need in a single take. We can see some of the finished product in the trailer for Top Gun: Maverick.

It certainly sounds like getting these shots was a lot of work for Top Gun: Maverick, but it will likely have been worth it when everybody sees the finished product. It will hit theaters in November.

Dirk Libbey
Content Producer/Theme Park Beat

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian. Armchair Imagineer. Epcot Stan. Future Club 33 Member.