Tom Cruise Insisted on Bringing Back Val Kilmer for 'Top Gun' Sequel Despite Cancer Battle
WENN/Kento Nara/Tony Forte

The 'Mission: Impossible' actor fought to have his original co-star return for the upcoming 'Top Gun: Maverick' despite the latter's struggle with serious illness.

AceShowbiz - Tom Cruise insisted Val Kilmer was part of the "Top Gun" sequel, despite his throat cancer issues.

"Top Gun: Maverick" producer Jerry Bruckheimer reveals Tom fought to include Val in the film, so he could reprise his role as Tom "Iceman" Kazansky.

"He (Cruise) said, 'We have to have Val, we have to have him back. We have to have him in the film,' " Jerry tells People. "And he was the driving force. We all wanted him, but Tom was really adamant that if he's going to make another Top Gun, Val had to be in it."

Val took a hiatus from acting after he lost the ability to speak in 2014.

"He's such a fine actor, and he's such a good individual," Jerry adds. "We had such a good time on the first one and wanted to bring some of the gang back together again... It was a really emotional experience for all of us. It was a long time getting there, but we did."

Val's son Jack tells the publication it was a big comeback for his dad, adding, "They honour the legacy of Iceman, and he was so stoked by it."

The younger Kilmer also reveals many real pilots acted as consultants on set. "They were coming up to us and telling us that the first Top Gun inspired them to join the Navy and the Air Force," he smiles. "Then we had these big F-bomb planes flying overhead. It was like one of the proudest moments of being American that you could think of really."

"Top Gun: Maverick" will hit cinemas in November (21).

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