Formula 1 driver Lewis Hamilton has revealed that he was offered the opportunity to star in the upcoming new Top Gun movie but had to turn it down due to scheduling conflicts.
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Top Gun: Maverick comes 34 years after the original movie was released and will see Tom Cruise reprise his role as Peter “Maverick” Mitchell. It is expected to arrive in cinemas next year on June 26, 2020.
Val Kilmer is expected to return for the sequel, although he doesn’t appear in the first trailer. A number of other stars, including Ed Harris, Jennifer Connelly, Miles Teller, Jon Hamm and Glen Powell, have also been cast in the sequel.
Another name who almost made it onto the casting sheet is F1 champion Lewis Hamilton. In a new interview with ESPN, the Mercedes driver revealed that he was forced to turn down a role in the movie due to his F1 calendar.
“I was trying to get in Top Gun because I’m a massive fan,” he explained. “But I didn’t have time to do any filming. But I had an opportunity to do it and I couldn’t do it.”
No stranger to the movie industry having played cameo roles in the Cars franchise as well as Zoolander 2, Hamilton revealed that he is currently seeing an acting coach and has hired an agent as he would like to do more acting in the future.
“I auditioned for a movie a while ago and it took one day to learn the role,” he said. “I had a fashion show in Paris and I probably had maybe four or five shows to go to, so in between I quickly changed and saw this [acting] coach, and I saw her for 20 minutes and we quickly went through one part and then I went to a show and came back and went through another part.”
He didn’t get the part – it went to “someone like Kurt Russell” – but even if he did Hamilton admitted that it would be hard for him to find any time to shoot.
“I definitely don’t have time for movies [right now],” he said. “I would take up my whole winter, so I wouldn’t get a break, so that’s the difficult thing that I’m struggling with right now.
“If you saw my calendar…it’s super heavy-loaded and I’m trying to take days out to give myself some time back, so I can be the best that I can be here [in F1]. So it is just trying to find a balance.”
Top Gun: Maverick is directed by Joseph Kosinski and the script has been written by Justin Marks, Eric Warren Singer and Peter Craig.
Original Top Gun producer, Jerry Bruckheimer, is co-producing along with Cruise and Skydance CEO David Ellison. The first film was directed by the late Tony Scott, who died in 2012.