Top Gun Fun

I have been thinking a lot about the old classic “Top Gun” for some reason. I’m not a big Tom Cruise fan, but love, love, love that movie. It reminds me of summer and just hanging out relaxing. Here are some fun facts about the film and some pics to go along with them. What did you think about the film?

–Val Kilmer did not want to be in this film, but was forced to by contractual obligations.

–One of the unused call-signs ‘Tombstone’ can be seen on a black fighter pilot helmet with three red arrows in promotional photos featuring Jerry Bruckheimer and Don Simpson.

–Bryan Adams was asked to allow his song “Only the Strong Survive” on the soundtrack, but he refused because he felt that the film glorified war.

–Charlie’s “older man” date at the officer’s club is the real-life “Viper”, Pete Pettigrew. He is a retired Navy pilot and TOPGUN instructor, and shot down a MiG during the Vietnam War. He served as the technical consultant on the film.

–The piano scene and the final bar/jukebox scene were shot in a San Diego restaurant called Kansas City BBQ, at the corner of Kettner Blvd and W. Harbor Drive. The restaurant housed many props and memorabilia from the film, including the jukebox and Maverick’s flight helmet sits behind the bar in a locked display case. However, on June 26, 2008 Kansas City BBQ suffered a grease fire that destroyed the establishment, including all of the Top Gun (1986) memorabilia on display.

–The love scene between Tom Cruise and Kelly McGillis was filmed after initial test screenings. Moviegoers complained that there was no love scene, so the company obliged. McGillis, however, had already dyed her hair darker for her next film. This is why the scene is tinted blue. Also noticeable as a subsequent shoot due to the longer length of Tom Cruise’s hair (particularly in front).

–Riding on the back of this film’s success, the US Navy set up recruiting booths in the major cinemas to try and catch some of the adrenaline charged guys leaving the screenings. They had the highest applications rate for years as a result.

–When the guys, as students, were first being spoken to by Charlie in the hanger, Maverick explains that he gave “the bird” to a MiG. She asks how he saw the MiG up close, and he says he was flying inverted. Right then, Ice coughs “bullshit” and the guys laughed. The “bullshit” line was ad libbed by Val Kilmer.

–Tom Cruise actually had to wear lifts in his scenes with Kelly McGillis. Cruise is 5’7″ while McGillis is 5’10”

–Patrick Swayze, Emilio Estevez, Nicolas Cage, John Cusack, Matthew Broderick, Sean Penn, Michael J. Fox and Tom Hanks all turned down the role of Maverick. Charlie Sheen, Jim Carrey, Rob Lowe, Eric Stoltz, John Travolta, Scott Baio and Robert Downey Jr. were considered for the role of Maverick.

–Tatum O’Neal, Holly Hunter, Michelle Pfeiffer, Jennifer Grey, Jamie Lee Curtis, Ally Sheedy, Geena Davis, Jodie Foster, Daryl Hannah, Diane Lane, Sarah Jessica Parker and Linda Hamilton all turned down the role of Charlie. Carrie Fisher, Sharon Stone, Debra Winger, Olivia Newton-John and Madonna were also considered for the role and Brooke Shields turned it down in order to study French Literature at Princeton.

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Join the Discussion!

  1. oh yeah this is one of my all time faves, I have to admit that iceman (val kilmer) is still so spunky!

  2. We just watched this movie this weekend. I loved this movie when I was little and I agree with bumpkin, I love the volleyball scene! :)

  3. I had the biggest crush on Ice Man during this time. I dreamed of running my fingers through his sexy spikes. The Volleyball scene went down in history, filed under hot!

  4. I don’t like Cruise either but love Top Gun. It was made before Cruise, who brings his own writers to every script and rewrites it in his starring favor, was a giant star.

    Now his movies are just vehicles for him. That’s why the Mission Impossibles are incomprehensible, he and his people rewrote original scripts!

  5. I love that movie!
    And I can’t imagine it with anyone other than the original cast, thank goodness they made Val Kilmer stay, he was great in that movie!

    I love all your movie facts!

  6. I love Top Gun too! I can almost recite it line for line. My favourite facts here are that Cruise had to wear lifts, the love scene was shot later, and Kilmer’s “bullshit” line was an ad lib. Awesome. xo’s

  7. I absolutely Love this movie. It is one of my favorites! I can say every line right along with the movie LOL Thanks much for the info!

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