The world of iconic United States Navy drama Top Gun is zooming back into theaters after more than three decades with a modern sequel that sees the original film's lead character Maverick, played by Tom Cruise, training a new generation of hot-shot pilots. In an interview, director Joseph Kosinski revealed how the passage of time has affected Cruise's hero character in Top Gun: Maverick.

"In so many ways he's still the guy that we remember from the first Top Gun. He keeps that old Ninja under a tarp in the hangar and still wears those Ray-Ban aviators. He's the best at what he does, and he's given his whole life to aviation. But that has come as a personal cost, and Maverick has to confront some things from his past and reconcile with them. It's a rite-of-passage story, much like the first film was. But this is a man now at a different stage of life."
RELATED: Ghostbusters: Afterlife Delayed A Week After Taking Over Top Gun 2 Spot

The original Top Gun became popular thanks as much to the style and swagger of the main characters as the storyline revolving around a contingent of brash young US Navy pilots. While the upcoming sequel will dive back into that world, it seems the tone this time around will be more somber and reflective, with the official synopsis for Top Gun: Maverick bearing out with this change in approach.

"After more than thirty years of service as one of the Navy's top aviators, Pete 'Maverick' Mitchell is where he belongs, pushing the envelope as a courageous test pilot and dodging the advancement in rank that would ground him."
"When he finds himself training a detachment of Top Gun graduates for a specialised mission the likes of which no living pilot has ever seen, Maverick encounters Lt Bradley Bradshaw, call sign 'Rooster', the son of Maverick's late friend and Radar Intercept Officer Lt Nick Bradshaw, aka 'Goose'."
"Facing an uncertain future and confronting the ghosts of his past, Maverick is drawn into a confrontation with his own deepest fears, culminating in a mission that demands the ultimate sacrifice from those who will be chosen to fly it."

While the movie can bank on nostalgia to bring older audiences to theaters, there is something in it for newcomers as well. In the past, Cruise has spoken about his reasons behind making Top Gun: Maverick. Apart from liking the script and the direction in which it took his character, the action-movie veteran believes the aerial sequences the film has to offer are going to be truly one-of-a-kind.

"I said to the studio, 'You don't know how hard this movie's going to be. No-one's ever done this before. There's never been an aerial sequence shot this way. I don't know if there ever will be again, to be honest."

Top Gun: Maverick is currently expected to arrive in cinemas on December 23. Directed by Joseph Kosinski from a screenplay by Ehren Kruger and Eric Warren Singer and Christopher McQuarrie, the movie also stars Jennifer Connelly, Val Kilmer, Ed Harris, Jon Hamm, Miles Teller, Glen Powell, Manny Jacinto, Monica Barbaro, Lewis Pullman, Danny Ramirez, and Jay Ellis. This news comes from Empire Online.

Top Gun Maverick Photo