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Tom Cruise Is Learning to Fly a Stearman Kaydet Military Plane for New Movie Stunt

Because reputations can’t be maintained without constant effort, Tom Cruise is working hard for his image as the industry’s biggest daredevil, and one of the last true action movie stars left. This time, with some help from a WWII military aircraft.
Tom Cruise in the OG Top Gun movie, which is probably when his love of aviation started 12 photos
Top Gun: Maverick second trailer includes plenty of aerial actionTop Gun: Maverick second trailer includes plenty of aerial actionTop Gun: Maverick second trailer includes plenty of aerial actionTop Gun: Maverick second trailer includes plenty of aerial actionTop Gun: Maverick second trailer includes plenty of aerial actionTop Gun: Maverick second trailer includes plenty of aerial actionTop Gun: Maverick second trailer includes plenty of aerial actionTop Gun: Maverick second trailer includes plenty of aerial actionTop Gun: Maverick second trailer includes plenty of aerial actionTop Gun: Maverick second trailer includes plenty of aerial actionTop Gun: Maverick second trailer includes plenty of aerial action
Earlier reports claimed that shooting for Mission: Impossible 7 had finally wrapped after two years of shooting in various locations around the world, with the occasional unwanted break brought on by the international health crisis. At some point, though, there was an overlap, and Cruise and the crew also started shooting Mission: Impossible 8. Now that the seventh installment is done, they’re still working on the eighth.

One scene in that movie, which will supposedly come out in 2023, is an aerial dog fight, and Cruise is preparing for it by learning to fly a 1943 Boeing-Stearman Model 75, according to The Sun. The tabloid calls the military aircraft The Widowmaker, which definitely sounds dramatic but is inaccurate: that morbid distinction has been granted in the past to aircraft like the Lockheed F-104 or the Martin B-26 Marauder.

The one Cruise is learning to fly is best known as the Stearman Kaydet, or simply the Stearman or the Kaydet. It’s a military trainer aircraft produced in the ‘30s and ‘40s, which is still being widely used today as a crop duster, a sports or acrobatic plane, for wing walking during aerial shows, and obviously, for big stunts in Cruise’s movies.

The tabloid also makes a huge fuss about how Cruise is being an all-manly-man for not “cutting corners” and bringing in a stuntman for the stunt, as if he were piloting the thing. Still, that he will actually be piloting it is not mentioned. The Kaydet is a two-seater, so Cruise could be flying in it much like he did the F/A-18 Super Hornet for Top Gun: Maverick: Cruise in the back and a real military pilot at the commands.

“Trying to film jaw-dropping scenes with an 80-year-old plane is particularly dangerous,” an insider dishes, hyping up the project. Rehearsals for the scene are already underway at Duxford Airfield in Cambridge.

Editor's note: Photos in the gallery show Tom Cruise in full pilot mode, in the trailer for Top Gun: Maverick.

 
 
 
 
 

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