WATCH: Tom Cruise Flies a Real Fighter Jet in Wild Behind-the-Scenes ‘Top Gun 2’ Video

by Shelby Scott
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Tom Cruise is one of pop culture’s most iconic actors. Now, several decades later, he’s returning to the world of “Top Gun 2,” the 1980s classic’s sequel debuting next month. For now, there are still several weeks before we see Cruise back in the pilot’s seat of an F-18 Hornet. However, on Monday, the actor gave us a behind-the-scenes look at some of the wildest film training we’ve ever seen. Check out the clip below as the cast takes to the skies alongside Tom Cruise for “Top Gun 2′ in a real fighter jet.

“This has been a long time coming,” Tom Cruise captioned the Tweet.

The evolution of technology enables viewers to take a close look at the intriguing work that goes into filmmaking. And as we know, every successful narrative bears its own challenges. However, for Tom Cruise and the rest of the cast of “Top Gun 2,’ the training they endured before flying a fighter jet was totally intense.

The above preview shows that not only were the actors required to take flying lessons, essentially. They also had to build up their physical endurance, complete underwater training, and so much more. As Tom Cruise and his costars take to the skies for “Top Gun 2,’ each actor even learned to operate their own cameras and lighting.

“I had to really teach them cinematography and lighting so that they understood what’s gonna look good on camera,” Tom Cruise explained.

Additionally, he said, “I wasn’t ready to make a sequel until we had a special story worthy of a sequel, and until technology evolved so that we could delve deeper into the experience of a fighter pilot.”

Tom Cruise Worked with the U.S. Navy to Film ‘Top Gun 2’ Aboard a Real Fighter Jet

As a dedicated actor and producer, authenticity remains a key factor for Tom Cruise. And intense physical training wasn’t the only contributor to the reality of “Top Gun 2.’ The franchise icon also shared that he and the rest of the filmmakers worked alongside both the United States Navy and the actual Top Gun school to coordinate the reality of the film and the experience.

In working with the professionals, the “Top Gun: Maverick” filmmakers were able to shoot in a practical way. Overall, it worked to intensify the realities of a Top Gun fighter pilot.

“If we’re gonna do it, we’re gonna fly in the F-18s,” Cruise said. “The aviation sequences had to be real.”

And as we see in the clip, the aviation sequences couldn’t get much more real. Of their work, director Joseph Kosinski said the film’s actors actually launched off a military aircraft carrier.

“I’m very proud of what we all accomplished. Each one of [the cast members] are extraordinary,” the “Top Gun: Maverick” star concluded.

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