TOP GUN: MAVERICK Stars Danny Ramirez, Jay Ellis and Glen Powell Cover Men’s Health Magazine

Posted on May 17, 2022



“Top Gun: Maverick” finally lands this summer. Maverick and Iceman are back—along with new pilots played by Jay Ellis, Danny Ramirez, and Glen Powell—to explore the danger zone, argue about who’s the best wingman, and, of course, quench our need for speed. Photographed together on an airfield in Chino, California, the three Top Gun recruits are featured on the cover of the May/June issue of Men’s Health. Each is profiled in an interview feature as part of the package, discussing their careers, what it was like to work with Tom Cruise, and the grueling five-month crash course Cruise designed for the film’s actors (“I learned the art of puking and rallying,” said Ramirez). Plus, in their Men’s Health “Train Like” videos, they take you to the gym to share how they trained to get in shape and get flight-ready to play pilots in Top Gun.

The May/June 2022 issue of Men’s Health featuring Jay Ellis, Danny Ramirez, and Glen Powell hits newsstands nationwide on May 24.




Jay Ellis Defied Death in Top Gun: Maverick and Smiled the Whole Time

Ellis on appreciating the physical demands required to play Payback in Top Gun: Maverick, his first action role:
“I’m six-foot-four, 215 pounds, played college basketball. I’m excited I can use my body and be physical in a way I haven’t got to be with some of my other work.”

Ellis on working with his pilot to practice every aspect of the scenes they were filming hundreds of times and acting in the sky:

“You’re telling the pilot, ‘I need the sun at six o’clock.’ You’re also telling the pilot where to position the plane and what maneuvers we need to fly for the film. There are scenes where many of my castmates and I are truly pulling seven g’s in the back of an F-18, cameras rolling, and we’re acting through it.”

Ellis, in his Men’s Health “Train Like” video, on working with Tom Cruise to prepare physically and mentally for the role:

Everyone knows him as a guy who does all his own stunts, and is hyper-focused on his training, the specificity in the training, and also how that translates on screen. And that’s the same thing that he did for us.”




Glen Powell Lost His Dream Top Gun: Maverick Role. But Tom Cruise Wasn’t Done With Him

Powell on losing out on the role of Rooster after auditioning for Maverick producer Jerry Bruckheimer, director Joseph Kosinsky, and Tom Cruise:

“I felt like I really delivered, and when I didn’t get it, I was absolutely heartbroken. 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.”

Powell on the shirtless football montage in the new Top Gun:

“In the days leading up, there was more male insecurity than you’ve ever seen on any set ever. And probably more coconut oil than even on Magic Mike.”

Powell, in his Men’s Health “Train Like” video, on the importance of training in preparation for his role in Top Gun: Maverick:

“When you’re doing Top Gun, you have to obviously look the part, but you also have to put intense stress on your bodies when you’re in the back of a fighter jet.”




Danny Ramirez Always Leapt Without Looking. In Top Gun: Maverick, He Ended Up Flying

Ramirez on how “the Tom Cruise School of Being a Bad*ss” taught him to trust others’ instincts, recalling co-star Glen Powell piloting a Cessna:

“Glen is all smiles, more smiles in a minute than you’ve had the whole week. The next thing I know, he’s pushing the throttle forward and we’re up in the sky. It’s bigger than a trust fall. Way bigger.”

Ramirez on working hard to find his place among predominantly white roles in Hollywood:

“The auditions that were coming across my plate at that point were all ‘the pool boy’ or ‘the gangbanger.’ The things that were happening [in Hollywood] at that moment were just not inclusive of where I could fit in. That’s why I started writing. If these roles don’t exist and I’m not trying to help create them, then all I can do is shout at the screen when no one who looks like me is on it.”

Ramirez, in his Men’s Health “Train Like” video, on overcoming his fear of flying to play Fanboy in Top Gun: Maverick:

“Once I got this role, I realized that I had to go and tackle a couple of my fears. One of them, which is most important, is the fear of flying.”






[Photo Credit: Art Streiber for Men’s Health Magazine]

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