Tom Cruise is a true maverick on — and off — set.
In a new interview, actor Glen Powell opened up about his upcoming movie, the highly anticipated Top Gun sequel, Top Gun: Maverick, and raved about his costar.
“Tom’s as great as people think he is,” Powell, 31, tells PEOPLE at Levi’s XX Chino launch event at Levi’s Haus Miami. “He’s as nice, he’s as hardworking, he’s as generous, he’s as available. He’s the man.”
The film takes place more than 30 years after the original Top Gun hit theaters in 1986 and follows Cruise’s character, Lt. Pete “Maverick” Mitchell, as he gives additional training to graduate fighter pilots for the Navy.
“The movie is in really, really good shape,” Powell said of the sequel, which is set to hit theaters on June 26. “I have never felt more confident about people being so pleased with what we’ve put out in this movie. I know there’s a lot of expectation on it, but obviously pressure’s a privilege, and I think we did it.”
The film’s director, Joseph Kosinski, spoke to Entertainment Weekly in his first interview about the film, saying all the actors involved had to train to fly F-18 Super Hornets and experience 1,600 pounds of force.
“The experience is thrilling, but very physically grueling,” Kosinski said. “The maneuvers that we were putting them through to tell this story are not something that you can just jump in and do. They all had to go through months of aerial training.”
Kosinski continued, “We put them through a training course that Tom actually designed himself. He’s a licensed aerobatic pilot, and he was thrown into the deep end when he did the first Top Gun without any training. So he knew that they would need to kind of work up to that level.”
Teller stars as Lt. Bradley “Rooster” Bradshaw, the son of Goose, who died in the 1986 film and was played by Anthony Edwards. Val Kilmer, meanwhile, is reprising his role as Iceman, while Jon Hamm, Jennifer Connelly and Ed Harris round out the star-studded cast.
Powell’s costar, Teller, was also at the event on Wednesday, which celebrated Levi’s new XX Chino launch, the brand’s first men’s chino platform. The new collection gives the classic pant a youthful update with three contemporary fits (Standard Taper, Slim Taper and Straight Cropped) available in cool colors like pink and jade blue, alongside the classic black, olive green, and navy.
“I think they do it so right. As a guy, there’s nothing cooler,” Powell says of the iconic denim brand, which he’s had a long affinity for wearing. “The best part is that growing up in Texas, anything that’s not practical, I don’t wear. I’ve always felt like, as a guy, the more worn things are, the more lived in they are, the cooler they are, and I think Levi’s, they just get better with time.”
In addition to Top Gun: Maverick, Powell is set to star in in another new film, Most Dangerous Game, with his Set It Up costar, Zoey Deutch.
“It’s sort of a pseudo sequel to Set It Up,” he explains. “It’s something that I’m crazy-passionate about. I think it’s going to be one of the things I’m most proud of in my entire career, so I’m really, really pumped about it.”
Top Gun: Maverick is set for a June 26, 2020 release.