The fourth Mission: Impossible installment, Ghost Protocol, isn’t the only franchise Tom Cruise is involved in. The star, who is currently in Dubai and facing allegations that fake fans were paid to scream for him in Mumbai, has confirmed rumours that he's going to make a Top Gun sequel.
Several journalists commented on how much Tom Cruise looked like his Top Gun character Maverick during his Dubai MI4 press conference earlier this week, and now it’s believed his new look is intentional as Tom gears up for the sequel to his 1986 aviation classic.
Plans for a follow-up to the hit film began to take shape last year (2010) when director Tony Scott revealed he was returning to the franchise to direct a new installment, while the Hollywood actor was rumoured to be interested in reprising his role as pilot Maverick, albeit in a smaller part.
But this week, amid allegations that two hundred ‘fans’ were paid to applaud Tom’s arrival at Mumbai airport, Cruise has revealed he's officially on board for the Top Gun project, and the news may help to distract from the negative publicity brewing. "We're working on it,” admitted Tom, "I said to Tony I want to make another movie with him. He and I haven't made a film since Days of Thunder (1990). We never thought that we would do it again. Then, they started to come to us with these ideas... I thought, 'Wow, what we could do now...'"
The news may overshadow a story written by a journalist for the Indian news site Firstpost, in which it was alleged that a crowd of 200 people were paid IR150 (Dhs10) each and given lunch in return for a warm welcome for the MI4 star. “None of us know who Tom is,” claimed one crowd member. “We do this for television shows and other such events where crowds are required.”
Film studio Paramount Pictures released a statement to the press, saying: "The only people paid were performers who danced outside the venue. The idea that fans were paid to cheer is completely ludicrous and entirely false."
Meanwhile Cruise is focusing on Top Gun. Though he insists the film is still only in the early stages of production, he’s hopeful plans will take flight: "If we can find a story that we all want to do, we all want to make a film that is in the same kind of tone as the other one and shoot it in the same way as we shot Top Gun."
The Eighties blockbuster Top Gun has developed a global cult following since its release, which should hopefully save on the cost of fake fans!