Tom Cruise is at his best when doing his own stunts — including flying his own jet in the upcoming Top Gun: Maverick.
The 57-year-old actor revealed what it took to fly a real jet for the sequel to his classic 1986 film Top Gun in a special behind-the-scenes video.
“You just can’t create this kind of experience unless you shoot it live. In order for us to accomplish this, we have the greatest fighter pilots in the world working with us,” Cruise said.
The experience “is aggressive,” he continued. “You can’t act that, the distortion in the face. They’re pulling 7 and a half, 8 Gs, that’s 1,600 pounds of force.”
The film also stars Miles Teller, Monica Barbaro, Lewis Pullman, Glen Powell and Manny Jacinto as Cruise’s fellow fighter pilots whom his character, Maverick, must train for a special mission.
“I am so proud of them and what they’ve done. It is heavy duty,” Cruise said.
Six IMAX cameras were placed inside the cockpit of every fighter jet used in the film.
“It’s amazing what we see in the cockpit and what the audience is going to experience,” producer Jerry Bruckheimer said. “Thanks to Tom, all the actors are becoming accustomed to the g-forces by all the training that they’re doing.”
Last week, Cruise and his costar Val Kilmer gave their fans a sneak peek at the highly anticipated film, with the trailer released on Monday.
Top Gun: Maverick takes place decades after the 1986 original film and features Cruise’s return as Maverick with Teller playing Bradley Bradshaw, the son of Anthony Edwards’ pilot Goose. Kilmer, meanwhile, is reprising his role as Iceman.
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Teller told The Wrap in June he struggled to keep up with Cruise while filming as the Mission: Impossible star is famous for doing his own stunts and keeping his fitness regime in top shape.
“I’m certainly trying, but it is difficult,” Teller said. “Just the volume of it. I’m sure a lot of people can do it for a couple of days or a week, but can you do it month after month after month?”
He continued, “There’s been nothing on this film that didn’t take a lot of training to accomplish.”
“I got a masterclass in how to make a movie, and Tom is always thinking of the audience,” Teller said of learning from the action star. “To work with someone who is so meticulous on every aspect, from the camera to the script to the character to the wardrobe to hair to makeup, literally every detail that guy is dialed in on, and anybody who works with him is fortunate.”
Top Gun: Maverick is set for a June 26, 2020 release.