Top Gun: Maverick hits theaters on May 27.

why top gun: maverick didn't bring back a key character

Top Gun: Maverick is guaranteed to give audiences a powerful dose of nostalgia and some incredible stunts, but the movie will not feature Kelly McGillis as Charlotte “Charlie” Blackwood, instructor of Top Gun and Maverick’s love interest–or any of the other original female cast. According to Insider, director Joseph Kosinski, neither McGillis nor Meg Ryan will appear because he “didn’t want every storyline to always be looking backwards.”

“It was important to introduce some new characters,” said Kosinski. “Those weren’t stories that we were throwing around.” As McGillis, 64, told Entertainment Tonight back in 2019, confirming this sentiment, “I’m old, and I’m fat, and I look age-appropriate for what my age is… that is not what that whole scene is about.” McGillis added that she hasn’t seen the movie’s trailer, and may consider seeing it depending on the reviews.

The director did, however, explain that there were plenty of touchstones from the 1986 movie, including the return of Val Kilmer as “Iceman” Kazansky, and a major storyline involving Maverick training Goose’s son, “Rooster” Bradshaw–played by Miles Teller. Reportedly, the sequel will also introduce a character who is only briefly mentioned in the first film.

An official synopsis for the film is as follows: “After more than 30 years of service as one of the Navy’s top aviators, Pete ‘Maverick’ Mitchell (Cruise) is where he belongs, pushing the envelope as a courageous test pilot and dodging the advancement in rank that would ground him… 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.”

Top Gun: Maverick hits theaters on May 27.

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