Top Gun: Maverick director reveals how he captured amazing flight footage

Top Gun Maverick
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It seems that all of his collaborators drew on Tom Cruise’s fearless spirit for stunts in the upcoming Top Gun: Maverick.

Heading into cinemas over the summer is one of the season’s most anticipated releases, the hugely-delayed Top Gun: Maverick. The new film stars Tom Cruise of course reprising the lead role, over 30 years after he last played hotshot pilot, Pete Mitchell.

Top Gun: Maverick will arrive two years later than planned but hey, when you’ve been waiting for a sequel since 1986, who’s really counting?

Also in the cast for the film are Miles Teller, Jennifer Connelly, Jon Hamm, Glen Powell, Lewis Pullman, Charles Parnell, Bashir Salahuddin, Monica Barbaro, Jay Ellis, Danny Ramirez, Greg Tarzan Davis and Ed Harris. The movie is directed by Joseph Kosinski (reunited with Cruise following their collaboration on 2013’s Oblivion).

The film will see Cruise’s hotshot pilot, Pete Mitchell, return to Top Gun, but this time as an instructor rather than a graduate. But as you’ll have no doubt seen from the trailer, Maverick is still a wild pilot and there’s still going to be plenty of seat-of-your-pants jet fighter flying to enjoy.

Joseph Kosinski and Miles Teller have been talking a little about the process of filming such a technically-demanding movie, with Kosinski telling Empire that “out of a 12 or 14-hour day, you might get 30 seconds of good footage.”. He said as he also revealed that he shot a whopping 800 hours of film for the project, “but it was so hard-earned” added the director.

“We didn’t have unlimited time in these jets,” he explained. “If they were going up for 20–30 minutes, I had to make sure that we got what we needed,” he added, revealing that the actors used on-board cameras to film themselves as there was no room for camera personnel in the cockpit of a fighter plane.

That comes with its own complications according to Teller, one of the film’s stars. “You had to be incredibly efficient,” Teller adds. “You had to, a lot of the time, create an imaginary eye line to where another jet would be, and when you say a line, your face better be telling the story — the sun needs to be at the right angle.” As well as thinking about getting the right eye-line match, the actors also had to think about lighting, cinematography and camera operation, all whilst in jets.

And who said acting was easy? Top Gun: Maverick is set to hit UK cinemas on May 25th.

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