How you can help Mexico earthquake victims

San Diego film industry buzzing about ‘Top Gun’ sequel

SAN DIEGO – San Diego’s film office Wednesday welcomed news that Tom Cruise plans to make a sequel to “Top Gun,” the movie that imprinted the city’s military culture on the consciousness of millions of moviegoers.

Cruise, who starred as hotshot F-14 pilot “Maverick” in the 1986 film, confirmed the rumored sequel in an appearance on the Australian morning television show “Sunrise.”

“I’m going to start filming it, probably in the next year,” the 54- year-old actor said. “It’s happening, it’s definitely happening.”

The city of San Diego’s film office, which assists with locations and other local production needs, hasn’t been contacted by anyone associated with the sequel, according to city spokeswoman Perette Godwin.

She said local film staff were “excited” by the news, however.

The film, in which Cruise’s character had a romantic interest in a flight instructor played by Kelly McGillis, made locations around San Diego County must-sees for tourists, including the military air base at Miramar, Kansas City Barbeque in the Gaslamp Quarter — which displays memorabilia from the movie — a house on Pacific Street across from the beach in Oceanside and the new Point Loma Lighthouse.

The air base was operated by the Navy when the film came out, but was later transferred to the Marine Corps. The Top Gun flight school is now located at Fallon, Nevada.

“Top Gun” had a major impact on pop culture, putting actress Meg Ryan on the road to stardom, reinvigorating the career of the Righteous Brothers, whose song “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin”‘ set the mood for a key romantic moment, spawning the underrated parody “Hot Shots!” and the quip, “I feel the need, the need for speed.”