Motorsports icon Lewis Hamilton actually had the chance to take his high-speed skills from the racetracks to the open skies — at least on film, that is. According to the September 2022 issue of Vanity Fair, Tom Cruise himself even asked the 7x Formula One champion to appear in this year’s No. 1 top-grossing movie, Top Gun: Maverick.
“When I heard the second one was coming out, I was like, ‘Oh, my God, I have to ask him,’” Hamilton revealed. “I don’t care what role it is,” he said he told Cruise, adding,” ‘I’ll even sweep something, be a cleaner in the back.’” But Cruise reportedly wanted Hamilton in the cockpit instead.
The 37-year-old Londoner called Cruise “[o]ne of the nicest people you’ll ever meet,” revealing they’d met “years ago when he was doing Edge of Tomorrow, and then we just built a friendship over time.”
But why didn’t Hamilton make the final cut of the movie, then? Well, it turned out that filming was scheduled around the same time as the peak of Formula One season. “I’m a perfectionist,” he told the outlet, and Hamilton said he simply wouldn’t be able to ensure he nailed the role to a tee.
So he unwillingly phoned Cruise and director Joseph Kosinski to turn down the offer, stating it was the “most upsetting call that I think I’ve ever had.”
Hamilton’s commitment to his craft is reflected in the extraordinary records to his name, including 103 Grand Prix victories and 6 Grand Slams. As a matter of fact, another Tom openly spoke to VF about how great Hamilton is: NFL GOAT Tom Brady.
The 7x Super Bowl winner considers Hamilton “an artist” of the racetrack. “Anyone can have a great season,” Brady enthused. “Anyone can have five great seasons, but it’s really hard to have 10 great seasons or 15 great seasons.”
“That takes different traits, different qualities,” the quarterback continued. “A lot of those come from things that have happened in your life that allow you to be motivated over a long period of time.”
Watch the video below to learn about some of the moments in Hamilton’s life that have impacted him the most throughout life. And you can read the rest of his interview with Vanity Fair by clicking here.