What it's like to run a carrier as the 'Top Gun' sequel films onboard

Entertainment

Editor's Note: This article by Amy Bushatz originally appeared on Military.com, a leading source of news for the military and veteran community.

ABOARD THE USS THEODORE ROOSEVELT -- Loose lips sink ships, but do they reveal too much about the hugely anticipated "Top Gun" sequel, "Top Gun: Maverick," filmed onboard in February?

Not on this carrier, they don't. Although sailors here dropped a few hints about spotting movie stars around the ship as it was docked in San Diego for the film shoot, no cats — or Tomcats — were let out of the bag.

"I can't talk about that," said Capt. Carlos Sardiello, who commands the Roosevelt.


What they would talk about, however, was the challenge of balancing the film crew's needs with training aboard the ship, which was not put on hold during the shoot.

"It was amazing — two weeks of very, very difficult work because we were training at the time, taking care of our mission and, on top of that, supporting the filming," Sardiello said. "It was very rewarding to sailors looking back on it to be a part of it."

Balancing filming with training meant adding another level of complication to operations aboard the carrier.

"They fit into our operations. We set the bounds and the constraints for them to achieve their objectives at the same time," Sardiello said. "Another layer of coordination, another team member, to make sure they were doing what they needed to do safely, meet our training objections and to help them capture what the Navy is providing them."

Just what the service is providing is supposed to be under wraps, but an F-14 Tomcat, reportedly borrowed from the San Diego Air and Space Museum, was spotted by onlookers on the carrier's deck during the February shoot.

The iconic Tomcat was left out of the group photo with the cast and crew proudly displayed on Sardiello's office table here. The photo is, however, signed by Tom Cruise, "Top Gun Maverick," according to the inscription.

Down in flight deck control, Lt. Cmdr. Alex Diaz said his major challenge was organizing the flight deck around the needs of training and aircraft background shots sought by the film crew.

"At that stage, if you're making Top Gun 2, me being a flight decker my whole career, you had me at 'hello,'" he said, adding that the command and film crew coordinated the schedule carefully. "They didn't expect you to go from filming into launching aircraft. There was a gap big enough to be able to fit both requirements."

Still, filming a movie brought a few unexpected situations for some of the sailors onboard.

"We supported the film crew. We used radios for stuff I thought we'd never use radios for [like], 'We need them to hair and makeup,'" said Lt. Cmdr. Julie Holland, the ship's public affairs officer.This article originally appeared on Military.com

More articles from Military.com:

SEE ALSO: 8 Things You Probably Didn't Know About 'Top Gun'

WATCH NEXT: Who Exactly Was The Bad Guy In 'Top Gun'?

(U.S. Air Force photo)

An Air Force major drowned in a Caribbean Princess cruise ship pool Friday morning, the Broward Medical Examiner's Office said

Stephen Osakue, 37, worked for the Air Force as a research pharmacist, according to a statement by the Medical Examiner's Office on Monday. Osakue was based at Columbus Air Force Base in Mississippi.

Read More Show Less
(Facebook)

A Marine was killed in a crash near Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort on Saturday afternoon.

Lance Cpl. Derrick Thirkill, 21, of Florence, Alabama, was an active-duty Marine stationed in Beaufort, said Beaufort County Coroner Ed Allen.

Read More Show Less
An aerial view of the Pentagon building in Washington, June 15, 2005. U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld defended the Guantanamo prison against critics who want it closed by saying U.S. taxpayers have a big financial stake in it and no other facility could replace it at a Pentagon briefing on Tuesday. (Reuters/Jason Reed JIR/CN)

The Pentagon is sending nearly 1,000 more troops to the Middle East as part of an escalating crisis with Iran that defense officials are struggling to explain.

While the U.S. government has publicly blamed Iran for recent attacks on merchant vessels in the Gulf of Oman, not a single U.S. official has provided a shred of proof linking Iran to the explosive devices found on the merchant ships.

At an off-camera briefing on Monday, Navy officials acknowledged that nothing in imagery released by the Pentagon shows Iranian Revolutionary Guards planting limpet mines on ships in the Gulf of Oman.

Read More Show Less
Photo: Lance Cpl. Taylor Cooper

The Marine lieutenant colonel removed from command of the 1st Reconnaissance Battalion in May was ousted over alleged "misconduct" but has not been charged with a crime, Task & Purpose has learned.

Lt. Col. Francisco Zavala, 42, who was removed from his post by the commanding general of 1st Marine Division on May 7, has since been reassigned to the command element of 1st Marine Expeditionary Force, and a decision on whether he will be charged is "still pending," MEF spokeswoman 1st Lt. Virginia Burger told Task & Purpose last week.

"We are not aware of any ongoing or additional investigations of Lt. Col. Zavala at this time," MEF spokesman 2nd Lt. Brian Tuthill told Task & Purpose on Monday. "The command investigation was closed May 14 and the alleged misconduct concerns Articles 128 and 133 of the UCMJ," Tuthill added, mentioning offenses under military law that deal with assault and conduct unbecoming an officer and gentleman.

"There is a period of due process afforded the accused and he is presumed innocent until proven guilty," he said.

When asked for an explanation for the delay, MEF officials directed Task & Purpose to contact 1st Marine Division officials, who did not respond before deadline.

The investigation of Zavala, completed on May 3 and released to Task & Purpose in response to a Freedom of Information Act request, showed that he had allegedly acted inappropriately. The report also confirmed some details of his wife's account of alleged domestic violence that Task & Purpose first reported last month.

Read More Show Less
Photo: U.S. Army

A soldier was killed, and another injured, after a Humvee roll-over on Friday in Alaska's Yukon Training Area, the Army announced on Monday.

Read More Show Less