Aircraft Carrier USS Abraham Lincoln Serves as Location for Top Gun’ Sequel
Contributed by Debbie Gregory
“Top Gun: Maverick,” the sequel to the 1986 Hollywood blockbuster “Top Gun,” is working to fulfill the need for speed aboard the USS Abraham Lincoln.
According to service spokesperson Lt. Cdr. Daniel Day, the Navy is supporting one shoot aboard USS Abraham Lincoln, per a Production Assistance Agreement signed by Paramount Pictures and the Department of Defense.
“Our priority will always be war-fighting, and training combat-ready Naval aviation forces … That being said, we believe we can support the film and simultaneously achieve training objectives,” Day said.
The crew is shooting footage on the flight deck of air operations, which will likely pair the Navy’s new Lockheed Martin F-35C Lightning II Joint Strike Fighters alongside older Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornets from Virginia Beach-based Carrier Air Wing Seven, taking off and landing as part of their carrier qualifications. Paramount will reimburse the Navy for any costs associated with flying sequences that do not meet training objective.
“This opportunity is one of many aircraft carrier embarks planned pier-side and at sea on both coasts coordinated by the Commander, Naval Air Forces,” said Naval Air Force Atlantic spokesman Cmdr. Dave Hecht.
The sequel has Tom Cruise reprising his role as Pete “Maverick” Mitchell and Val Kilmer back as Tom “Iceman” Kazansky. Miles Teller is playing the son of Maverick’s best friend, Nick “Goose” Bradshaw, who was killed in the original film during a training accident.
Rounding out the cast is Jennifer Connolly, Glen Powell, Jon Hamm, Ed Harris, Lewis Pullman, Charles Parnell, Bashir Salahuddin, Monica Barbaro, Danny Ramirez, and Jay Ellis.
Movie producer John Davis claimed that Top Gun was a recruiting video for the Navy, that people saw the movie and said, “Wow! I want to be a pilot.” After the film’s release, the US Navy stated that the number of young men who joined wanting to be Naval Aviators went up by 500 percent.
The sequel had a tentative release date of July 2019 but now appears likely to hit theaters in June 2020… 34 years after the original movie made its debut.