SEOUL, June 20 (Yonhap) — ‘Top Gun: Maverick’ star Tom Cruise said Monday he felt ‘huge pressure’ to make the sequel to the hit film released more than three decades ago, but felt rewarded , when he personally met with donating fans full support for him and his film.
“It is a privilege to be here. I’m so happy to see everyone. I missed you all,” he said at a press conference in Seoul. “Thank you for your always warm welcome and all the years you have been so gracious to me.”
He arrived in Seoul on Friday along with producer Jerry Bruckheimer and the cast of Top Gun: Maverick, including Miles Teller, Glen Powell and Greg Tarzan Davis, as part of a global promotional tour. The film is slated to hit Korean theaters on Wednesday.
It is his tenth official visit to South Korea after his last trip in 2018 to promote Mission: Impossible – Fallout.
Top Gun: Maverick follows Captain Pete Maverick, played by Cruise, who returns to the United States Navy and trains a group of younger airmen for an urgent mission to bomb a secret foreign country factory.
The 59-year-old actor said he felt “tremendous pressure” to bring viewers back to the world of Top Gun 36 years after the first film was released.
“You feel the same world and character, same trajectory and same emotions, same tone. It’s 36 years later. That’s what we shot for,” he said. “It was a lot of pressure. I know a lot of fans have asked about it. I never want to disappoint the fans.”
The film has had a bigger than expected hit around the world since its release in the US on May 27th. It became the second highest-grossing film worldwide in 2022 at $885 million, behind “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness” at $942.5 million.
He said Top Gun: Maverick not only has great visual action scenes and amazing aerial combat sequences, but also a great personal story about universal personal values that resonate with all people around the world.
“There’s something very unique about the story,” he said. “It has great drama, great visual action for an audience, a great personal story about honor, friendship and family. I think these are values that we can all identify with and connect with.”
Speaking of the three-hour red carpet event with hundreds of Korean fans on Sunday, he said it was very “special” for him to meet moviegoers in person and share a personal cinematic experience that has been blocked for the past two years due of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I know everyone has been through such a challenging time,” he said. “It was very important for all of us to be able to come here personally and have the shared experience of seeing the film together in a cinema. It was really very nice after the time we went through.”