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Top Gun: Maverick is an upcoming American action drama film directed by Joseph Kosinski from a screenplay by Ehren Kruger, Eric Warren Singer, and Christopher McQuarrie and a story by Peter Craig and Justin Marks.[6] It is the sequel to 1986's Top Gun. The film stars Tom Cruise, Miles Teller, Jennifer Connelly, Jon Hamm, Glen Powell, Lewis Pullman, Ed Harris, and Val Kilmer. Cruise and Kilmer reprise their roles from the first film.

Top Gun: Maverick is scheduled to be theatrically released in the United States and Canada on July 2, 2021, by Paramount Pictures. It will also be available to stream on Paramount+ 45 days after its theatrical debut. It was originally scheduled for release on July 12, 2019 but was postponed to "allow the production to work out all the complex flight sequences".[7] The release was then delayed further due to the COVID-19 pandemic and scheduling conflicts.[8]


  • Tom Cruise as Captain Pete "Maverick" Mitchell, a test pilot and flight instructor
  • Miles Teller as Lieutenant Bradley "Rooster" Bradshaw, a pilot trainee, and the son of Maverick's late RIO and best friend, Nick "Goose" Bradshaw
  • Jennifer Connelly as Penny Benjamin, Maverick's love interest, who is a single mother, bar owner, and the daughter of a former admiral[9]
  • Jon Hamm as Vice Admiral Cyclone
  • Glen Powell as "Hangman", a pilot trainee
  • Lewis Pullman as Bob, a pilot trainee
  • Ed Harris as Rear Admiral, Maverick's superior
  • Val Kilmer as Admiral Tom "Iceman" Kazansky, a fellow instructor and friend/former rival of Maverick. He is a four-star admiral and currently serves as Chief of Naval Operations
  • Monica Barbaro as "Phoenix", pilot trainee[10]
  • Charles Parnell as Rear Admiral Warlock
  • Danny Ramirez as "Fanboy", Payback's WSO
  • Manny Jacinto as Fritz
  • Bashir Salahuddin as Coleman
  • Jay Ellis as Payback
  • Jake Picking
  • Raymond Lee
  • Lyliana Wray as Amelia Benjamin, Penny's daughter
  • Jean Louisa Kelly as Carole Bradshaw, Nick "Goose" Bradshaw's widow and mother of Rooster
  • Greg Davis as Coyote
  • Bob Stephenson



Development of the film began in 2010 when Paramount Pictures made offers to Jerry Bruckheimer and Tony Scott to make a sequel to Top Gun. Christopher McQuarrie had also received an offer to write the sequel's screenplay, which was rumored to have Cruise's character Maverick in a smaller role.[11] Peter Craig,[12] Justin Marks,[13] who described the film as a dream project,[14] Ashley Edward Miller and Zack Stentz[15] would be credited as screenwriters on the project.

When asked about his idea for a new Top Gun film, Scott replied, "This world fascinated me, because it's so different from what it was originally. But I don't want to do a remake. I don't want to do a reinvention. I want to do a new movie."[16] The film will reportedly focus on the end of the dogfighting era[13] and the role of drones in modern aerial warfare[12] and that Cruise's character, Maverick, will fly an F/A-18 Super Hornet.[17] After Scott's suicide, the sequel's future remained in question, but producer Jerry Bruckheimer remained committed to the project, especially given Cruise's and Kilmer's interest.[18][19]

In June 2017, Cruise revealed that the title would be Top Gun: Maverick, with Harold Faltermeyer returning as composer for the sequel. Cruise further stated that, "Aviators are back, the need for speed. We're going to have big, fast machines. It's going to be a competition film, like the first one … but a progression for Maverick."[20] Later the same month, it was confirmed that the film would be directed by Joseph Kosinski, while no title was officially confirmed.[21][22]

Musician Kenny Loggins has confirmed that his iconic song "Danger Zone" will be featured in the film.[23] In October 2018, it was reported that Hans Zimmer would also compose for the film alongside Harold Faltermeyer.[24]

On June 19, 2019, at CineEurope in Barcelona, attendees were able to watch for the first time some early footage of the film from a special Paramount presentation. During the presentation the President of International Theatrical Distribution Mark Viane and Co-President of Worldwide Marketing and Distribution Mary Daily appeared in flight clothes.[25]


Val Kilmer had campaigned on his social media page that he would like to reprise his role in the film,[26] and by June 2018, The Wrap reported that he will appear in the film.[27] In July 2018, Miles Teller was cast in the role of Goose's son, against Nicholas Hoult and Glen Powell. All three were flown to the home of Tom Cruise, the star of the film, for chemistry tests.[28] Later that month, Jennifer Connelly joined the film's cast to play a single mother running a bar near the Naval base.[29][30]

In August 2018, Powell joined the cast of the film in a pilot trainee role that was enlarged for him, having impressed star Tom Cruise, producer Jerry Bruckheimer, as well as executives at Paramount Pictures and Skydance, with his auditions.[31] That same month, Monica Barbaro, Thomasin McKenzie, Charles Parnell, Jay Ellis, Bashir Salahuddin, Danny Ramirez, Ed Harris, Jon Hamm and Lewis Pullman joined the cast of the film with Barbaro, Ellis, and Ramirez portraying pilot trainees and McKenzie portraying Connelly's daughter.[32][33][34] In September 2018, Manny Jacinto joined the cast of the film.[35] In October 2018, Kara Wang, Jack Schumacher, Greg Tarzan Davis, Jake Picking, Raymond Lee, Jean Louisa Kelly and Lyliana Wray joined the cast of the film.[36] Additionally, McKenzie was forced to drop out of the film after signing onto Lost Girls.[37] In November 2018, Chelsea Harris joined the cast of the film in an undisclosed role.[38]

According to Kelly McGillis, who appeared in the original film, she was not asked to appear in the sequel.[39][40][41]


Preliminary production on the film officially started on May 30, 2018, in San Diego, California.[42][43] During late August a 15-person film crew from Paramount and Bruckheimer Films were aboard the Norfolk-based aircraft carrier Template:USS to shoot flight deck operations.[44][45] In mid-February 2019, Cruise and the production crew were sighted on board Template:USS at NAS North Island.[46] In March, filming was completed at NAS Whidbey Island in Oak Harbor, Washington.

On June 19, 2019, Miles Teller revealed in an interview that he had finished filming two days earlier.[47] Principal photography was scheduled until April 15, 2019, in San Diego, California; Lemoore, California; China Lake, California;[48] Lake Tahoe, California;[49] Seattle, Washington;[50] and Patuxent River, Maryland.[Citation needed]

The movie was filmed in IMAX format using IMAX-Certified Sony Venice 6K Full Frame cameras.[51]


The film's first trailer premiered during a surprise appearance by Tom Cruise at the 2019 San Diego Comic Con on July 18, 2019.[52][53] The first trailer received high praise from fans, with many lauding the return of the series and some comparing it to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.[54] The Hollywood Reporter wrote that some fans noticed that the flag of the Republic of China (known as the Taiwanese flag) and the Flag of Japan were missing from the bomber jacket of Cruise's character and accused Paramount of removing it to appease a China-based co-financier.[55]

In February 2020, toy manufacturer Matchbox company (owned by Mattel) announced that they were releasing a series of Top Gun die-cast models and products, including an F-14 Tomcat, Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, North American P-51 Mustang and role play items. They were scheduled for public release on June 1, 2020, despite the delayed theatrical release.[56]

In June 2020, plastic model manufacturer Revell company released a series of 1/48 scale Top Gun plastic models, including an F-14A Tomcat and a Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet based upon the aircraft in the movie. These are versions of previous Revell offerings with modified decals and markings.[57]


Top Gun: Maverick was originally scheduled to be released by Paramount Pictures on July 12, 2019. In August 2018, it was delayed to June 26, 2020.[7] On March 2, 2020, Paramount moved the film up two days early on June 24, 2020.[58] On April 2, 2020, it was delayed to December 23 due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.[59][60] In July 2020, the film was once again delayed to July 2, 2021, partially due to scheduling conflicts with Cruise, as well as the recent delays of Mulan and Tenet due to the rise of COVID-19 cases.[8] Netflix and Apple TV+ have reportedly tried to purchase the distribution rights to the film, but Paramount has refused to sell them.[61] It will later be streamed on Paramount+, 45 days (August 16) after its theatrical release.


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  2. Dave McNary. "Tom Cruise's 'Top Gun: Maverick' to Release Two Days Early", Variety, March 2, 2020. 
  3. Marc, Christopher. "'Top Gun: Maverick' Will Indeed Have Oscar-Winning Cinematographer Claudio Miranda", Omega Underground, June 5, 2018. 
  4. "China's Tencent Pictures Inks Paramount Deal; Invests In 'Transformers' Spin-Off 'Bumblebee' & 'Top Gun' Sequel" (December 5, 2018).
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