Top Gun marked a before and after for many fans. Now, years after the original film, Top Gun: Maverick is a return full of nostalgia and demands without which this sequel would not have been the same. Producer Jerry Bruckheimer has revealed that Tom Cruise insisted that Val Kilmer returns as Tom "Iceman" Kazansky for the sequel.
This news comes through People, which reports that Bruckheimer said Cruise is primarily responsible for Kilmer reprising his character in Top Gun: Maverick. The producer's words signaled an uncompromising attitude on Cruise's part:
"He said, 'We have to have Val, we have to have him back. We have to have him in the movie,'" Bruckheimer told People. "And he was the main reason. We all wanted him, but Tom was really adamant that if he's going to do another Top Gun, Val had to be in it."
On the other hand, Kilmer's son, Jack Kilmer, noted that the actor is "very excited" to return to his role and that he believes that Top Gun: Maverick lives up to the legacy of his character.
In fact, Kilmer has wanted to come back as Tom "Iceman" Kazansky for years. When the sequel's title was revealed in 2017, he expressed on Instagram his interest in reprising his original Top Gun role: "I'm ready Tom, I still have my Top Gun badge." Soon after we learned that he would reprise his role in Top Gun: Maverick. the film has inspired a whole update in the Microsoft Flight Simulator video game, which you can see in the trailer that we share below.