Top Gun: Maverick Director Reveals Why The Val Kilmer – Tom Cruise Scene Was So Emotional

Top Gun: Maverick has proven to go beyond simply a callback to the 1980s by dazzling reviewers and audiences alike and is among the greatest films of the year. It features highly advanced filmmaking that immerses viewers in the cockpit of an F18 fighter jet. The picture has a lot of exciting cinematic sequences that are based on the original film’s plot themes. But, in the midst of this exhilaration, there’s a far more intimate sequence that’s getting a lot of attention. In a recent interview, director Joseph Kosinski revealed how this intimate scene was the most emotional for him. The details are as follows:

Poster of Top Gun: Maverick.
Poster of Top Gun: Maverick.

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The relationship between Maverick and Iceman:

Iceman and Maverick reunite in Top Gun: Maverick
Conflict between Maverick and Iceman in Top Gun.

Tom Cruise plays Pete “Maverick” Mitchell in the original Top Gun, while Val Kilmer plays Tom “Iceman” Kazansky. Kilmer hates Maverick as soon as he enrolls at TOPGUN school, and the duo begin a conflict. However, by the final scene, the two have formed a strong bond, primarily after Maverick saves Iceman’s life. Maverick maintains the same smug temperament as in the previous film, yet is nonetheless asked to come back to TOPGUN as a trainer in Top Gun: Maverick. Iceman puts in a good word for him at the academy, and that’s the sole reason. The sequel focuses on Cruise’s Maverick, but Kilmer’s influence is felt throughout the film, and he ultimately reappears as Iceman in a short but moving scene.

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The most emotional scene of Top Gun: Maverick:

The reunion of Maverick and Iceman in Top Gun: Maverick.
The reunion of Maverick and Iceman.

While Top Gun: Maverick has many references to the 1986 classic, it solely features Cruise and Kilmer from the original characters. A tremendously poignant sequence is the reconciliation of Tom Cruise’s Maverick and Val Kilmer’s Iceman. However, that was more than enough to give the film a powerful emotional climax, and Kosinski will never forget shooting it.

He told The Hollywood Reporter: “That’s one of those memories I’ll never forget, where you’ve got this actor in Val, someone who I admired through his whole career, and having him play one of his most iconic characters reuniting with one of Tom’s most iconic characters on screen for the first time in 36 years. Just to see how much respect they had for each other as actors and to see a friendship that has evolved over 36 years. They’re just two actors at the top of their game doing this really beautiful scene for the film that’s so important. It was just a very emotional day on set … it’s not often you get to do a scene with that much kind of emotional weight in a summer tentpole film.

My favorite part of that scene is the button at the end, that sense of competition is always there. Despite them being friends, there’s still that one-upmanship that exists between, I think, all these pilots, and I also think between Tom and Val. I think that competition is what kind of made their relationship in the first film feel so electric and real, in that there was a bit of a rivalry there as young actors. So just that moment, in the end, that hug and that bit of humor to me is kind of what really makes the scene work”.

Related: Top Gun: Maverick Director Reveals Why He Replaced The Original Volleyball Scene With a Football Sequence in the Sequel

Written by Alfeeya Pathan

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