Top Gun 3’s Update Avoids One of Hollywood’s Most Cynical Sequel Trends

Top Gun: Maverick producer Jerry Bruckheimer’s update on Top Gun 3 means the franchise will avoid a mistake with Hollywood sequel trends.

WARNING: minor spoilers ahead for Top Gun: Maverick!

Whereas Top Gun: Maverick debuted as a massive hit, producer Jerry Bruckheimer’s response to Top Gun 3 is a refreshing take on Hollywood sequel trends. Top Gun: Maverick is the highest-grossing film of 2022 outside of the superhero genre, with the sequel continuing to skyrocket at the box office. Not only did it break box office records for Tom Cruise openings and record the lowest second-weekend drop of any $100 million premiere, but Top Gun 2 also debuted to overwhelmingly positive reviews, keeping the summer blockbuster alive and kicking.


After 36 years, Paramount has revived 1986 Superior gun with its 2022 legacy sequel, bringing back Tom Cruise as the charismatic and reckless aviator Pete “Maverick” Mitchell. While training a new group of TOPGUN graduates for a high-stakes mission, Maverick faces his own mortality, the grief of his former comrades, and the responsibility of passing on his legacy to a younger generation of pilots, including Rooster, the son of his late best friend, Goose. The touching end of Top Gun 2 seems to create closure for the Maverick story, but also sparked conversations about a follow-up with Top Gun 3.

Related: Everything We Know About Top Gun 3

With a large influx of legacy sequels in recent years, Hollywood has developed a cynical trend in which studios greenlight subsequent installments far too soon. Asked about the possibility of Top Gun 3, producer Jerry Bruckheimer revealed there were no immediate plans to continue the franchise – but didn’t rule anything out. Rather than jump on the hype bandwagon to maintain interest by quickly developing a sequel, Paramount is waiting to move forward with Superior gunthe future as it slows down to enjoy the runaway success of the 2022 film. Top Gun 2 is now one of the few legacy sequels that approaches the return of its original characters and the development of a new generation with greater care and purpose, which another lackluster follow-up can often ruin.

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This turns out to be a problem with Paramount’s next project Cry 6which will be released in 2023, just a year after the successful launch of its 2022 legacy sequel. Cry 5The approach to the characters was novel in terms of cultural commentary on sequels, toxic fandoms and franchise revivals, with new Hollywood meta commentary being a key part of the Scream film series. However, Cry 6 was almost immediately greenlit by the studio with very rapid development, which begs the question of whether or not it has something more to say about Hollywood themes or whether it is primarily a franchise of cash by Paramount. Likewise, Tom Cruise Top Gun: Maverick had a gripping and compelling story to tell after 36 years, especially through the aging of Maverick and the generation of Rooster as replacements for the original characters. Whereas Top Gun 3 is an exciting prospect, it needs time and attention before it returns with a gripping story that justifies its execution.

On the other hand, Paramount’s patience with Top Gun 3 comes amid news that the studio is being sued for copyright infringement. Superior gun (1986) based on Ehud Yonay’s 1983 California “Top Guns” magazine article, which Paramount obtained the rights to shortly after publication. Yonay’s heirs claim Paramount did not reclaim the rights to the story upon copyright termination in 2020 while alleging that Top Gun: Maverick was not completed until May 2021. If the Yonays win their Top Gun: Maverick lawsuit for copyright infringement, Paramount will have to relinquish rights to future sequels and spinoffs to the story. While Paramount is ready to “vigorously“fight against what they call a”without merit“Law, the studio probably realized it would face legal action and shouldn’t focus on developing Top Gun 3 until these issues are resolved.

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