Jon Hamm on universal appeal of Top Gun Maverick: It isn’t about one country vs another

Hollywood star Jon Hamm says Top Gun: Maverick has a universal appeal as it illustrates what all can be achieved when a team comes together to achieve a goal. The film is the much-awaited sequel to the 1986 blockbuster of the same name and brings superstar Tom Cruise back in the iconic role of Pete Maverick Mitchell.

Hamm, best known for his turn as Don Draper in classic TV show Mad Men as well as movies like The Town, Million Dollar Arm and Baby Driver, is part of the film’s ensemble cast which also includes Miles Teller and Jennifer Connelly.

The action movie comes amidst the ongoing military conflict between Ukraine and Russia, something that gives the film a current appeal.

Hamm said Maverick does not pit one country against another and explores themes that would resonate with people all over the world.

“There’s always conflict somewhere… it’s at a flash point right now and it’s at an inflection point right now too. But I think that there is something universal about the film that we made. It shows that diligence, hard work, working together and respect for one another on your team can conquer any obstacle.

“And I think that part of the universality of the message is what we really hope to get out there. This isn’t about one country against another country,” the 51-year-old actor told PTI in a Zoom interview.

Maverick is set over thirty years after the events of the first film and sees Cruise’s character returning to the Top Gun institute and training a group of graduates, including Rooster, the son of his late wingman Goose, for a specialised mission.

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Hamm essays the role of Vice Admiral Beau Cyclone Simpson, the distrusting superior of Cruise’s Maverick at the Top Gun institute.

The actor was full of praise for Cruise, whom he described as a “truly iconic leader at the front of the ship”. “It’s really impressive. It’s a wonderful energy to be around. His enthusiasm is infectious. He clearly loves what he does for a living. And he clearly feels so connected to this particular story.

“To come back to the same set and virtually the same wardrobe some 30 odd years later and continue telling this story is clearly something very special to him. So to be invited to come along on that journey was a tremendous honour. And it’s something that I certainly don’t take lightly,” Hamm said.

Top Gun: Maverick is produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, Tom Cruise, Christopher McQuarrie and David Ellison.

The film also features Glen Powell, Lewis Pullman, Charles Parnell, Bashir Salahuddin, Monica Barbaro, Jay Ellis, Danny Ramirez, Greg Tarzan Davis with Ed Harris and Val Kilmer.

The Paramount Pictures movie is exclusively distributed in India by Viacom18 Studios and releases this Friday.

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