Manny from 7Outof10.co.uk got to interview the Top Gun screenwriter Jack Epps Jr. and sicne he knows I’m a Jerry Bruckheimer (he produced Top Gun) nut, he asked if me if I’d like to contribute some questions which of course, I did!
I’ve placed a few of them below but for the full interview, head over to 7Outof10.co.uk – especially if you’re a fan of the games.
At the time, would you have believed that Top Gun would still be loved 25 years after it was originally made?
When I first became inspired to write the movie I thought we had a unique visual world to write about. The more I researched the project the more deeply I became involved. I thought we had a good shot of having a hit film, but I never thought this would have such a long life. It’s really much bigger than anything I imagined. I think it’s the fan’s movie. They have really owned it and made it theirs. I enjoyed the way the language is part of the vernacular. I hear it quoted all the time. Crash and burned. Target rich environment. Edge of the envelope, and of course all the lines that get quotes: “I feel the need… the need for speed”. These guys talk this way, and we just put it down.
Did you get to visit the set during filming and if so, which scenes did you get to see?
I was not on the set very much. I was writing Legal Eagles at the time and was under the gun to get the script out. I saw a lot of the NAS Miramar shooting – the flying and tarmac scenes.
Was there anything in the script that was cut that you’d have like to have seen in the final movie and can you reveal anything that ended up on the cutting room floor or left out of the script?
The script was cut down pretty tightly. There were scenes in the first draft where after Maverick had his failure of confidence, he went out and stole his plane and tried to fly it closer and closer to a mountain to gain his confidence. It was cut and I think they were right. Didn’t need it.
Where do you think Maverick is today? Still teaching at Top Gun?
Good question. If Maverick were still in the Navy he might be teaching, or he might be a strategic planning of special missions. He would probably have something very unique to do with flying – dangerous – because he is dangerous – and out of the ordinary.
When writing the famous “I feel the need…” and “you can be my wingman any time” quotes, did you envisage those becoming the hugely popular catchphrases they ended up as?
No. We made a decision to never explain a single line of dialogue. When I did research I couldn’t understand what they were saying, so we used lines the pilots used. And also, tried to capture the excitement of the world. It’s still great. I love to hear the thunder of military jets taking off. The pilots would call it the sound of freedom.
Could you ever see a Top Gun sequel being made or is the original more likely to get the remake treatment?
Everyone talks about sequels, but I think it’s a little past it now. Maybe in 1988 or 1990 we could have done a good one, but I think it wouldn’t work. Works as a game because it’s a different media experience. Doesn’t tread the exact same territory. As for a remake, I don’t think It’s possible without going digital and that just won’t cut it on the screen. Also, I doubt we could get the same Navy cooperation we had in 1985. I think it’s a better idea to turn up the surround sound and enjoy the original.
Click here to view the full interview on 7Outof10.co.uk