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The U.S. Navy Deleted Some Of Joseph Kosinski's Top Gun: Maverick Pre-Production Photos

2022 featured more than its fair share of noteworthy films. However, very few movies last year received quite as much attention or acclaim as "Top Gun: Maverick." The long-awaited blockbuster sequel came 36 years after the original "Top Gun" hit theaters, and it seems safe to say that the film had some high expectations to live up to when it was finally released. Fortunately, it seems equally safe to say that "Top Gun: Maverick" managed to not only live up to those expectations but also surpass them. There are, in fact, some fans who believe "Top Gun: Maverick" is better than the original "TopĀ Gun."

While part of the acclaim surrounding "Top Gun: Maverick" can be attributed to the performances given by its all-star cast, an equally large part of the film's legacy will undoubtedly be defined by its exceptionally realistic action sequences. Indeed, in typical Tom Cruise fashion, nearly all of the high-octane flying scenes in "Top Gun: Maverick" were filmed using real jets and, in case that wasn't impressive enough, with most of the film's actors actually in the very planes that their characters were supposed to be piloting.

The film's unique shooting methods required that the "Top Gun: Maverick" cast and crew be given access to real-life technology and planes that are operated exclusively by the U.S. Navy. While it seems like the film's collaboration with the Navy went fairly well, too, it sounds like there was one moment when "Top Gun: Maverick" director Joseph Kosinski may have unknowingly overstepped his bounds.

Joseph Kosinski had his camera wiped by the Navy

During a recent interview with Deadline, "Top Gun: Maverick" filmmaker Joseph Kosinski opened up about the research he did in preparation for the film and, in specific, one startling moment he had with members of the U.S. Navy.

After discussing his own personal love of aviation, Kosinski revealed how his position as the "Top Gun" sequel's director resulted in him being treated as a "subject matter expert" by the Navy. "I got to live that dream of being in the Navy for a couple years. I got to go to places that civilians don't get to go to," Kosinski said. "I got to see things that no civilian would get to see." Building off his latter comment, Kosinski further revealed that he once had all the photos on his camera wiped clean without explanation by Navy personnel.

"I had my camera confiscated at one point. Wiped clean," Kosinski recalled. "I took some pictures and maybe captured something I wasn't supposed to capture, and my camera was quickly returned to me without any photos on it." Kosinski understandably doesn't hint in the interview at what he might have seen or captured on his camera that led to its brief confiscation. However, the director did note that he believes all of his experiences with the Navy, including the top-secret locations that they gave him access to, only further elevated "Top Gun: Maverick."

"It was all in this quest for authenticity," Kosinski said. "I think you feel it when you see [the film], because you don't feel like you're in a Hollywood-designed setting. There's a reality to it." Based on how well "Top Gun: Maverick" has been received (via Rotten Tomatoes), it seems safe to assume that most moviegoers would likely agree with Kosinski's assessment.