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'Top Gun,' Tom Cruise to return to the big screen in 2019

"Top Gun" is officially back. The long-awaited sequel to the high-flying blockbuster has been slated for a July 12, 2019, release, Deadline reports.

The 31-years-in-the-making sequel — "Top Gun: Maverick" — will star Tom Cruise as the title character, according to Entertainment Weekly. Paramount Pictures pegged Joseph Kosinski to direct the film. Kosinski previously directed Cruise in the 2013 film "Oblivion."

Not much else is known about the sequel, but Deadline reports that Maverick is set to be a flight instructor, training the next generation of fighter pilots.

"Aviators are back, the need for speed. We’re going to have big, fast machines. It’s going to be a competition film, like the first one … but a progression for Maverick," Cruise told Access Hollywood.

The original "Top Gun" was released in 1986 and made more than $350 million at the box office. Filming for "Top Gun: Maverick"

will begin next year.

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