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Top Gun: Maverick's F-18 Flights Cost New Tom Cruise Film $11,374 an Hour

  • ‘Top Gun’ sequel’s stars got to ride in the F-18, not pilot it
  • Pentagon approved script despite image of rule-bending pilots
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Tom Cruise’s Jet Rides Paid the US Navy Up to $11,374 Hourly
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The US Navy lent Tom Cruise F/A-18 Super Hornets for the new “Top Gun” movie. The only catches: The studio paid as much as $11,374 an hour to use the advanced fighter planes -- and Cruise couldn’t touch the controls.

The “Mission Impossible” star, famous for performing his own stunts, insisted that all the actors portraying pilots on the long-delayed “Top Gun: Maverick” film fly in one of the fighter jets built by Boeing Co. so they could understand what it feels like to be a pilot operating under the strain of immense gravitational forces. Cruise, 59, had also flown in a jet for the original “Top Gun,” a smash hit in 1986.