‘Top Gun’ Star Tom Skerritt Reveals What Made the Original 1986 Film So Iconic

by Samantha Whidden

Following the highly anticipated premiere of “Top Gun: Maverick,” Tom Skerritt spoke about why the original 1986 film is so iconic. 

While speaking to Fox News about “Top Gun,” Tom Skerritt stated that the film’s music had a lot to do with its success. “But the screenplay itself, which I’ve always honored as being the whole reason for a good show, and you just write the work … and do the job you have good material for the rest of us to work with. And I really believed in that screenplay.”

Tom Skerritt, who starred with Tom Cruise and Val Kilmer in “Top Gun,” also said that everyone had a good time filming the 1986 movie. “We all knew, or maybe I just sensed it, that this was going to be a very successful film.”

As he spoke about “Top Gun” star, Cruise, Skerritt recalled meeting the actor for the first time. “He was clearly a nice young man, 25, aware that he was going to rise with this film. He didn’t say that, but I assumed that by discussion we had.”

Skerrit went on to point out that Cruise knew he was going to rise with “Top Gun.”

Tom Skerrit Speaks Out About the ‘Top Gun’ Sequel 

Meanwhile, Tom Skerrit shared his thoughts about the new “Top Gun” Sequel and what it means for the film’s franchise. “I think it’s going to be a lot of aeronautical engineering on display, a lot of going shooting straight up into the sky and going as high as you can go.”

Although he thinks there’s going to be some amazing footage, Skerrit said the film might not have the same appeal as the original. “I think we’re going to just watch some guys do some crazy flying, and … they’re going to have a lot of fun, but it’s not going to have the storyline the original had. You can’t revive something that’s already been done.”

Along with discussing the sequel, Skerritt spoke about how he was interested in joining the U.S. Air Force with the intention of learning to fly a plane. However, he didn’t get a chance to actually get up in the air. “Military’s military, whatever the service you’re in,” Skerritt stated. “One is a little rougher than others. That would be the Marines. But I never got to fly, which was something I thought would be a dream for me to do.

Skerritt also said that he had an older brother who was a P-51 pilot in World War II. “And I loved him and I loved him for what he did.”

In regards to his military career, Skerritt added, “At 17, I enlisted right out of high school. I thought maybe I can sneak in and become a pilot, which was not possible. I had no math skills whatsoever, and I had a good four years of learning how to behave myself.