After the worldwide success of "Top Gun," Tom Cruise, director Tony Scott and producers Don Simpson and Jerry Bruckheimer tried to recapture the magic in 1990 with "Days of Thunder," with Cruise as a hotshot young stock car driver looking to make his name in NASCAR.
The movie wasn't exactly a flop, but it didn't inspire a generation of young Americans to drive real fast like "Top Gun" had inspired a flood of new recruits to the U.S. Navy. Its lasting legacy may be as the inspiration for many of the jokes in 2006's "Talladega Nights," which is surely an accomplishment for Cruise and company to treasure.
Now "Top Gun: Maverick" director Joseph Kosinski, screenwriter Ehren Kruger and Bruckheimer are heading down a similar path by making their next collaboration about Formula 1 racing.
Cruise is busy with his "Mission: Impossible" movies, so they've found an impressive replacement star in Brad Pitt, who won an Oscar for his 2019 portrayal of World War II veteran Cliff Booth in Quentin Tarantino's "Once Upon a Time...In Hollywood." Pitt and seven-time F1 world champion Sir Lewis Hamilton will join Bruckheimer as producers on the movie.
Apple has made a deal to distribute the as-yet-untitled movie, and the technology company is rumored to have agreed to an extended theatrical release before the movie makes its streaming debut on the company's Apple TV+ service.
Kosinski has a long track record of excellent films that include the underrated "TRON: Legacy," the sci-fi thriller "Oblivion," the firefighter drama "Only the Brave" and now the worldwide smash, "Top Gun: Maverick." His attention to the technical details of Navy aviation makes him an excellent candidate to capture the high-risk thrills of open-wheel racing.
Kosinski and Bruckheimer are most certainly moving forward with Maverick's blessing, since it was Cruise who introduced the director to Hamilton during the filming of the "Top Gun" sequel. Now, years later, the wheels are in motion for Pitt to step in and make the best F1 movie since Al Pacino in "Bobby Deerfield."
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