Photo by JC Olivera/Getty Images
Among the many accolades showered upon Top: Gun Maverick on its way to becoming the biggest hit of last year that wasn’t Avatar: The Way of Water, Tom Cruise and the rest of the team came in for much praise after holding back on releasing the legacy sequel until they knew it was guaranteed to take flight at the box office.
The leading man and producer said he would have sat on the finished film for a decade if he had to, leading many to laud Maverick as the savior of the theatrical experience. Hammering that sentiment home, no less of an authority than Steven Spielberg graciously thanked Cruise for “saving Hollywood’s ass” during the recent Academy Awards nominee luncheon.
However, such adulation could come at a price, after suspicious glances were cast in the direction of so many Hollywood movers and shakers fawning over Cruise’s contributions, especially when the great Andrea Riseborough conspiracy has been taking up so much headline space.
In fact, one source wondered to Variety “why are people taking shots at that random Best Actress nominee but not talking about this?” in regards to the people shortlisted for awards being wooed and hyped by the people who decide whether or not to hand them the statue during the ceremony, which in Cruise’s case could be as high-profile as a Best Picture trophy should Maverick shock the world and come out on top.
On the other side of the coin, those with ties to the Cruise camp claimed that everything was perfectly above board and within the Academy’s code of conduct, proving that some people are ready, willing, and determined to stir up a hornet’s nest of controversy over just about anything.