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Tom Cruise on 'Top Gun 2': 'It's definitely happening'

Filming will start next year, he tells an Australian TV show The 1986 original also starred Kelly McGillis, Anthony Edwards and Val Kilmer

Tom Cruise says the long-discussed sequel to

Tom Cruise says the long-discussed sequel to "Top Gun" is a sure thing and should start shooting soon. Photo Credit: AP

Tom Cruise confirmed on Wednesday that a sequel to his iconic 1980s fighter-pilot movie “Top Gun” is ready for takeoff.

“It’s true. . . . Yeah, it’s true,” Cruise, 54, told the stunned and delighted co-hosts of the Australian morning show “Sunrise” in response to their asking about persistent rumors. “You know what, we’re — I’m going to start filming it probably in the next year. . . . It is definitely happening. . . . You are the first people that I’ve said this [to publicly]. I’m here, you asked me, and so I’m telling you, this is going to happen.”

The 1986 action-drama “Top Gun” centered on Cruise’s cocky F-14 Tomcat pilot, Lt. Pete “Maverick” Mitchell, and his romance with Charlotte “Charlie” Blackwood (Kelly McGillis), his astrophysics instructor at the Navy’s elite Fighter Weapons School. Becoming one of the most beloved military movies, it spawned such memorable lines “It’s classified. I could tell you, but then I’d have to kill you” and “I feel the need . . . the need for speed!” Directed by Tony Scott and also starring Anthony Edwards and Val Kilmer, it grossed $356.8 million worldwide and earned four Oscar nominations, winning for its song “Take My Breath Away,” by Berlin.

Rumors of a potential sequel began circulating in January 2016 after the film’s producer, Hollywood heavyweight Jerry Bruckheimer, tweeted a photo of himself and Cruise captioned, “Just got back from a weekend in New Orleans to see my old friend @TomCruise and discuss a little Top Gun 2.”

When confronted with that tweet on England’s “The Graham Norton Show” in October, Cruise conceded, “Yes, we’re discussing it. . . . We’re trying to figure it out. . . . If we can figure it out I’d love to work on it.”

Kilmer, in a Reddit AMA (“Ask Me Anything”) chat on April 26, had sent conflicting signals about a sequel possibility. He first responded, “Hell yes. What a hoot it will be” when a fan asked, “Are you going to do Top Gun 2?” But when another asked whether his character, Tom “Iceman” Kazansky, would be returning, Kilmer merely said, “I would love to be in TOPGUN 2.”

Cruise, whose “The Mummy” opens June 9, has not elaborated on social media.

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