The world of fighter pilots and volleyball is returning to the big screen later this year, with the release of the highly-anticipated Top Gun sequel, Top Gun: Maverick. As suggested by the title, the main character of the film will once again be Tom Cruise's Maverick, who is returning to the iconic pilot school to help train a new batch of recruits. Also returning to the fold is Val Kilmer's Iceman, a character that was only added to the film after the actor begged the creative team to bring him back.
In Kilmer's new memoir, "I'm Your Huckleberry," he goes into great detail about his relationship with the Top Gun franchise He initially wasn't supposed to be in the upcoming sequel, but he was able to plead his case to Cruise and the producers, and they eventually changed their minds.
"As the Temptations sang in the heydey of Motown soul, 'ain't too proud to beg,'" Kilmer wrote. "The producers went for it. Cruise went for it. Cruise couldn't have been cooler. ... Tom and I took up where we left off. The reunion felt great."
Kilmer's attitude towards Top Gun has changed drastically from his outlook on the original film back in 1986. When the part first came about, he couldn't have been less interested. He didn't put much effort into his audition, thinking that they would pass on him, but was surprised to learn he'd actually landed the role.
"I didn't want the part," he wrote. "I didn't care about the film. The story didn't interest me. I showed up [to the audition] looking the fool, or the goon. I wore oversize gonky Australian shorts in nausea green. I read the lines indifferently. And yet, amazingly, I was told I had the part. I felt more deflated than inflated."
Of course, it was the part of Iceman that helped make Val Kilmer a superstar. After Top Gun, he went on to star in films like Willow, The Doors, True Romance, Tombstone, and Heat. In 1995, Kilmer took on the role of Batman and starred in one film as the caped crusader.
This December, Kilmer will reprise the role of Iceman for Top Gun: Maverick, but don't expect him to leak any spoilers. "As far as the film's plot goes, I'm sworn to secrecy," Kilmer added.
Top Gun: Maverick is set to hit theaters on December 23rd.