‘Top Gun: Maverick’ Co-Stars Val Kilmer and Tom Cruise Both Face Rumors of Bad On-Set Behavior

Tom Cruise and Val Kilmer have a lot in common. Both men are Hollywood mainstays who have appeared in many big-budget blockbusters over the years. They have worked together in the past, most notably in the ’80s classic Top Gun. However, both men have been accused of having hot tempers. When the two reunited to film the hit sequel Top Gun: Maverick, many assumed trouble ahead. However, Kilmer has opened up, offering unique insight into the dynamic between him and his co-star. And his words are a bit surprising.

Val Kilmer has earned a reputation for being difficult on-set

Kilmer rose to fame in the late ’80s. His chiseled good looks and intense demeanor made him one of the most in-demand actors in the entertainment industry. Almost from the beginning, however, Kilmer was plagued by rumors that he was difficult to work with. Several directors have spoken out about their experiences with Kilmer. Batman Forever director Joel Schumacher revealed he even got into a “physical pushing match” with the actor on set.

According to The Things, Kilmer and Schumacher feuded while making the superhero film. Schumacher eventually deemed Kilmer “psychotic” and “impossible.” Kilmer has also feuded with actors, including Tom Sizemore, with whom he worked on the movie Red Planet. Reportedly, the co-stars got into an altercation over the fact that Sizemore’s elliptical was being shipped to the set, ultimately resulting in Sizemore throwing a 50-pound weight at Kilmer. 

Tom Cruise has been in the headlines many times over the years

While Cruise hasn’t been labeled as difficult to work with as Kilmer, the actor has definitely made waves over the years due to his hot temper. In late 2020, The Sun shared leaked audio of Cruise loudly berating a crew member for breaking COVID-19 protocol on the set of Mission: Impossible 7. Some fans praised Cruise for his dedication to making a movie safely. But others were put off by the intensity of his anger.

According to Best Life Online, most of Cruise’s altercations have had to do with talk show hosts. Most notable is his 2005 interview with Matt Lauer, where Cruise slammed the prescription drug industry as well as psychology. Claiming that he is an expert on both subjects, Cruise continuously shut down Lauer’s questions and protestations, making viewers around the world more than a little uncomfortable.

What did Val Kilmer say about working with Tom Cruise on ‘Top Gun’ and ‘Top Gun: Maverick’?

val kilmer tom cruise top gun
(L-R): American actors Val Kilmer and Tom Cruise on the set of ‘Top Gun, directed by Tony Scott.’ | Paramount Pictures/Sunset Boulevard/Corbis via Getty Images

Both Kilmer and Cruise returned to film the hit Top Gun: Maverick. Although some might have expected that the two strong-willed actors would clash, they apparently had nothing but fun working together. Although the two faced rumors of tension on the set of the original Top Gun, Kilmer has stated recently that he and Cruise share a strong professional respect for each other.

“Tom called me. I said yes immediately,” Kilmer told Entertainment Weekly about being asked to return to the role of Iceman for Top Gun: Maverick. The actor revealed the scene that he and Cruise shared in the film brought back a lot of fond memories of filming the original. He said they had a great time working together. “We blew a lot of takes laughing so much,” Kilmer said. “It was really fun… special.” Clearly, any tension that might have existed between the veteran stars long since dissolved.

RELATED: Everything Wrong With ‘Top Gun: Maverick’ According to a Military Expert