Do you feel the need? The need for speed? What about the need for a Top Gun sequel?
Well, good news if you answered yes to the above – Top Gun: Maverick will be landing in cinemas in 2020. This sequel to the 1986 US military drama which shot Tom Cruise to fame sees rivals Maverick and Iceman don their aviator glasses once more.
Top Gun: Maverick is released in cinemas on 23rd December 2020.
The film was originally scheduled to be released on 12th July, 2019 but was then pushed back almost a year to 26th June 2020. And then to 17th July 2020. However, due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and its impact on the entertainment industry, the film has now been pushed back to 23rd December 2020.
This means that the sequel will come out more than 34 years after its predecessor. The delay is due to Paramount Pictures wanting additional time to present flight sequences with new planes and technology, say Variety.
Is the original cast returning?
Tom Cruise and Val Kilmer are returning to their roles as Pete ‘Maverick’ Mitchell and Tom ‘Iceman’ Kazansky, with their developing relationship being one element of the new film.
Director Joseph Kosinski told Entertainment Weekly: “The rivalry and relationship between Iceman and Maverick is one of those things that makes that first film so iconic.”
“It’s a relationship that is important to the Top Gun franchise and as a fan I would want to see how it’s evolved.”
Largely, Top Gun: Maverick will have a cast of new faces including Miles Teller (Whiplash) as the son of Goose from the first film and Academy Award winner Jennifer Connelly as a new love interest (replacing Kelly McGillis).
Is there a trailer for Top Gun: Maverick?
Yes, there are several! The latest trailer was released during the Super Bowl:
Here’s the first, released in July 2019.
Paramount released a second trailer for the film in December last year, featuring more Tom Cruise high-flying action.
Cruise appeared at 2019’s San Diego Comic-Con to release the new footage, taking the stage in a packed Hall H:
Thank you to all the fans who came out to Hall H today. It was great to share our first trailer for Top Gun: Maverick with you all. pic.twitter.com/akzi4AeC9Z
Why has the Top Gun: Maverick trailer been controversial?
One scene in the new trailer showed Cruise’s Maverick wearing the same leather jacket he sported in the original movie – but with a crucial difference.
While in the first Top Gun film, the piece of clothing displayed flag patches for Japan and Taiwan, the sequel has the same two patches showing unidentifiable shapes in a similar colour scheme.
There’s a new Top Gun movie coming out. And Maverick is wearing the same leather jacket – only this time it’s Communist Party of China-approved, so the Japanese and Taiwanese flag patches are gone (screenshot on right is from the new trailer)… pic.twitter.com/gUxFNFNUKX
The reason? Well, fans are speculating that it all comes down to China which has emerged as a huge movie market since Top Gun was released 34 years ago.
Add to that the fact that Tencent Pictures – the film arm of Chinese company Tencent – has co-financed the sequel, and many have come to the conclusion that the switch was made so as not to alienate Chinese powers that be and cinema-goers.
What happened in the original Top Gun movie?
The 80s classic follows US Naval Aviator Pete ‘Maverick’ Mitchell, a talented pilot with little regard for the rules and a close friendship with co-pilot Goose (played by Anthony Edwards).
He is recruited to an elite fighter school, where he clashes with fellow student Iceman (Val Kilmer) in the race to win the coveted Top Gun trophy. Oh, and he starts to fall for the beautiful instructor, Charlie (Kelly McGillis), as well.
What will happen in Top Gun: Maverick?
Rivals Maverick and Iceman return to the sky with the US Navy.
To adapt with the times, the film will focus on the waning days of dogfighting and the new era of drone warfare. It is being speculated that, just like in the original, our pilots will be facing off against the Russians.
Top Gun: Maverick also sees Tom Cruise truly in the pilot seat. He had expressed his desire to fly the fighter jets for real and demanded the stunts be “practical, no CGI.”
“Everything you see in this film is for real,” he later told the SDCC audience. “We’re working with the Navy, all of the flying you see in this picture is real, I really wanted to give you all an experience of what it is to be inside that aircraft.
“It’s a love letter to aviation.”
It’s not the first time Cruise has taken to the skies to perform his own stunts – he learned to fly a helicopter for 2018’s Mission Impossible: Fallout.
Who is in the cast of Top Gun: Maverick?
Tom Cruise will reprise his role as Pete “Maverick” Mitchell, accompanied by Val Kilmer’s Tom “Iceman” Kazansky – although the latter has been mysteriously absent from the film’s early trailers. One original star who definitely won’t be back is Kelly McGillis who has confirmed she will not reprise her role as Maverick’s love interest Charlie.
Top Cruise in the original Top Gun
“Oh my God, no,” she replied when Entertainment Tonight put the question to her. “I’m old and I’m fat and I look age appropriate for what my age is and that is not what that whole scene is about. To me, I’d much rather feel absolutely secure in my skin and who and what I am at my age as opposed to placing a value on all that other stuff.”
Miles Teller (Whiplash, Fantastic Four) will also take on the role of Goose’s son and Maverick’s new protégé, Lieutenant Bradley “Rooster” Bradshaw.
Ed Harris (playing a rear admiral), Jon Hamm (as a vice admiral), Lewis Pullman (pilot trainee Bob), Jennifer Connelly and Glen Powell (pilot trainee ‘Hangman’) have also joined the cast.
Top Gun: Maverick is released in UK cinemas 17th July 2020