WHEN GLEN POWELL heard there was going to be a Top Gun sequel, he didn’t have a ton of internal debate: he wanted in. After all, it was his father showing him the original Top Gun—which became his favorite movie, starring who would become his favorite actor, Tom Cruise—that made him want to become an actor in the first place. How determined was Powell to be in Top Gun: Maverick? He started learning how to live like a pilot months before even auditioning, heading to Edwards Air Force Base to fully immerse and live with aviators in order to see how they do what they do every single day. It also meant turning down offers for other major movies before he was even cast in this one. He was set on Top Gun: Maverick, and the role in his sights was Rooster, the son of Tom Cruise’s gone-but-not-forgotten best friend, Goose, from the original Top Gun. And then something he wasn’t expecting happened: Miles Teller got the part.
After months and months of prep—which ended up overlapping with the release of Set It Up, the Netflix romantic comedy that jettisoned his career into a new stratosphere—he auditioned for Maverick producer Jerry Bruckheimer, director Joseph Kosinsky, and Cruise himself. And it wasn’t going to happen. “I felt like I really delivered, and when I didn’t get it, I was absolutely heartbroken,” he says. “I got the news on July 3rd, and on July 4th, which is pretty much my favorite holiday—I’m a very patriotic dude from a very patriotic family—I was basically in the fetal position the entire day.”
The powers that be were impressed enough with what Powell showed them, however, that they did want him for another part in the movie, the role that would eventually become a character named “Hangman” (Ahead of the Top Gun: Maverick release, Hangman is still shrouded in mystery; fan theories online speculate on his connection, if any, to previous Top Gun lore, but those involved with the film have been tight-lipped). Powell’s heart was still set on Goose’s son, though, and he wasn’t sure there was any fit in the movie other than the one he had become so attached to. It’s somewhere we’ve all been before: when you want something so badly, and for one reason or another it just doesn’t work out. Is it worth it taking something slightly less, or slightly different from what you wanted? Or is it better to just cut your losses and move on? That’s the choice Powell found himself facing. [More at Source]
In Richard Linklater’s 2016 film Everybody Wants Some!!, a comedy about college baseball players set at the fictional Southeast Texas University, a smooth-talking ladies’ man named Finnegan hits on a coed by telling her his astrological sign. He’s a loyal and confident Leo, but, he confesses with a carefully rehearsed look of bashfulness, “the truth is, I wound easily.”
Finnegan is a bit of a playboy, but Glen Powell plays him with such charm that you want to be friends with him anyway. The 33-year-old Austin native has since portrayed astronaut John Glenn in Hidden Figures and won hearts in the Netflix rom-com Set It Up; more recently, he teamed up with Linklater again on the nostalgic Apollo 10½: A Space Age Childhood. On May 27, you can catch him in Top Gun: Maverick as Hangman, a pilot training for a specialized mission under Pete “Maverick” Mitchell, reprised by Tom Cruise.
Texas Monthly: You’ve been in Los Angeles for fourteen years. Is it easy for you to identify Texans out there?
Glen Powell: Oh, yeah. Texans head out there feeling like they’re going to take over the world. I also find that Texans, more than anyone, are undeterred when s— inevitably goes wrong. There’s a thing about Texans: you get punched in the nose, and you go back in the fight.
TM: It’s been two years since Top Gun: Maverick’s release was postponed. What’s it been like waiting for the rest of the world to see it?
GP: It’s been a slow decay of my looks, you know? (laughs) The experience feels so far away, but the cool part is we’re putting real fighter jets eighteen inches away from each other. It’s visceral—you feel complete investment in the well-being of the characters in a way that you don’t get in other movies. When movies get bigger, sometimes they lose emotion. And this one maintains it. [More at Source]
Glen Powell is a straight shooter. A Texas boy in fact, Austin. Just talking to him and hearing his voice speak from the heart, I can tell he’s not the type of person to make things up. Not possible. But I have to say I’m the lucky one here because I know Powell is going to break millions of hearts when he finally ties the knot.
But for now, we’ll concentrate on his latest project, Top Gun: Maverick, the sequel to the 1986 Tom Cruise megafilm, Top Gun. Powell will star alongside Cruise, Miles Teller, Jennifer Connelly, Jon Hamm, Ed Harris, and Val Kilmer. For Powell, it’s personal. The release date has been set for May 27th, 2022.
“Top Gun has been one of three seminal movies that made me want to be an actor. And Tom Cruise is the guy that I looked at as that’s who I want to be. And so knowing that Top Gun was coming down the pipeline, I was preparing and over-preparing. I went and lived with a bunch of pilots, I went to Edwards Air Force Base. I went to Miramar. I was like a full fighter pilot by the time I auditioned for Tom Cruise and did the test with them. And the test was to play Bradley Bradshaw, who is Goose’s son [Goose was played by Anthony Edwards in the original film]. And it was me, and it was Miles Teller, and it was Nicholas Hoult. And essentially I auditioned and we really laid it all on the field and I felt so good after it. I got calls from the casting director saying it looks like it’s going in my direction.”
Then he got the call he didn’t get it. Went to Miles Teller. “I love this job and I understand it’s just a business and when you get a role it just happens. It’s not personal and nobody’s trying to hurt you. But this one felt like a drum roll my entire life, this is the movie I wanted to make since I was a kid. Since I saw it when I was 10 years old. And so and that’s when I became an actor literally. I saw this movie when I was 10. And I became an actor and I wanted to be in acting classes when I was 10. So this one felt particularly personal and my favorite holiday is basically July 4. I’m very a patriotic dude. I come from a patriotic family and I basically spent that July 4 in a fetal position. And I’ll never forget it, I couldn’t even muster myself up off the ground. And that’s never happened to me before.”
As soon as he made peace with it, Powell started tweeting, saying that he was going to “take down all the Tom Cruise posters off my walls. Maybe I’ll just keep a couple. Fine, the posters are staying.” A lot of people thought that was really funny and a week later he got a call while at a friend’s wedding in Napa, an unknown number, and it was Tom Cruise.
“He’s like, ‘Hey man it’s Tom, are you around? I just wanna talk to you about what you did in the room. It was unbelievable. It was such a hard decision to make. You are fantastic and I want to find something to do together. Find something to build together.’ He’s just such a good guy for making this call. No one does that. It’s what makes Tom Cruise so special as a person.” [More at Source]
GLEN POWELL HAS CARVED OUT QUITE THE RESUME during his 10-plus years as a working actor in Hollywood. He’ll be the first one to tell you that the path from his home state of Texas to Los Angeles hasn’t always been rainbows and lollipops. Fortunately, there have been significantly more hits than misses (or missteps) unlike some other young Hollywood actors of his generation.
Glen’s been honing his craft ever since he arrived in Tinseltown, and he’s known as a highly skilled actor, and burgeoning writer and producer.
Glen was an essential player in the FOX horrorcomedy- slasher TV series Scream Queens in the mid- 2000’s. His film appearances have included roles in The Dark Night Rises and Expendables 3, and he starred in Richard Linklater’s coming-of-age comedy Everybody Wants Some!!
His portrayal of John Glenn in the 2017 Academy Award-nominated film Hidden Figures garnered him major looks. It wasn’t a gigantic role, but his performance was executed with star power in an important film. And it was noticed.
All of the above is well and fine, but 2022’s highly anticipated Top Gun: Maverick is set to go kaboom in May—for the film and for Glen Powell. He’s in the mix with a cast to die for: Tom Cruise, Val Kilmer, Jon Hamm, Ed Harris, Jennifer Connelly and Miles Teller.
Powell’s powerful audition for the film led him to a “secret” role in the movie. Along with a couple of other co-stars, he’s remained quiet about some particulars about his character.
Recently, we had the opportunity to chat with Glen about where he’s been, where he is now, and where he’d like to go. [More at Source]
I’ve updated the gallery with photos of Glen during his day at Cinema Con 2022 yesterday in Las Vegas. He started the day with the screening of Top Gun: Maverick followed by a Q&A. Then he attended the Big Screen Achievement Awards 2022 where he received the Star of Tomorrow award.
I’ve updated the gallery with photos of Glen & his partner Gigi Paris attending Heineken House reception in Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival.