Tom Cruise Wanted To Fly An F-18 Jet In Top Gun: Maverick, But The Navy Said No

Cruise is known for doing his own stunts, but the military said no this time.

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Tom Cruise is known for doing a lot of his own stunts. He even flew a helicopter in Mission: Impossible: Fallout. For his next movie, Top Gun: Maverick, Cruise wanted to fly an actual F-18 jet, but the Navy said no.

"The Navy wouldn't let him fly an F-18," producer Jerry Bruckheimer told Empire magazine (via USA Today).

Cruise wasn't totally shut out of flying aircraft, however, as he actually flew a P-51 plane and helicopters for stunt sequences. "He can do just about anything in an airplane," Bruckheimer said.

The filmmakers had actual Navy pilots fly the F-18s in Top Gun: Maverick, and these scenes were filmed using IMAX cameras inside the cockpits. While Cruise and his co-stars Miles Teller and Glen Powell did not fly those jets, they did complete what sounds like a gruelling training camp.

"When you're pulling heavy Gs, it compresses your spine, your skull. It makes some people delirious. Some people can't handle it," Cruise said of the training with his co-stars. "So I had to get them up to be able to sustain high Gs. Because they have to act in the plane. I can't have them sick the whole time."

Also in the interview, Cruise hyped up the aerial stunts in Maverick, saying the film will deliver unprecedented action.

"I said to the studio, you don't know how hard this movie is going to be," Cruise said. "No one has ever done this before. There's never been an aerial sequence shot this way."

Maverick remains scheduled to hit theatres in June, despite ongoing concerns around COVID-19. Another high-profile June release, Wonder Woman 1984, was recently delayed.

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