While promoting his runaway train flick 'Unstoppable,' which opens November 12, Scott confirmed to HitFix that he is set to direct the 'Top Gun' sequel, though it won't be his next picture and, in fact, there's no script yet, much less any further word on Tom Cruise's involvement. Scott wants to explore the end of the fighter jet pilot era, as aerial warfare transitioned to ground-controlled drone aircraft. Evidently the director is fascinated by the idea of "computer geeks" playing war games, safe in a Nevada trailer, and then partying all night.
If that idea sounds like a fit subject for a television news program, why, perhaps you saw the '60 Minutes' report last year on the Nevada drone pilots sitting in a trailer in Nevada and dropping bombs 7,500 miles away ("Drones: America's New Air Force"). It's a fascinating subject, though the '60 Minutes' piece concentrated more on pilots going home to their families at night rather than going out to bars. Still, how on earth does Tony Scott think that will make for an exciting action picture?
To be fair, 'Top Gun' was inspired by an article by Ehud Yonay for 'California Magazine' and that didn't stop screenwriters Jim Cash and Jack Epps, Jr. from creating classroom conflicts, an improbable romance, death in the skies and the possible start of World War III. So whoever writes 'Top Gun 2' should have complete freedom to come up with their own aerial melodrama. Perhaps all the drones fail and all the video game pilots must take to the skies, led by an over-the-hill Maverick?
At least we can be glad that Tony Scott doesn't want to do a remake or a reinvention of the same exact story as 'Top Gun.' Do you want to see a ground-based 'Top Gun 2,' with or without Tom Cruise as Maverick?