Why 'Top Gun' stars Kelly McGillis and Meg Ryan weren't asked back for 'Top Gun: Maverick,' plus more news

Here’s why the main female stars of ‘Top Gun’ don’t appear in the new sequel

In the new “Top Gun: Maverick,” both Tom Cruise, 59, and Val Kilmer, 62, reprise their roles from the original “Top Gun.” But the main female characters from the 1986 blockbuster — Maverick’s love interest, the brilliant and gorgeous flight instructor, Charlie (Kelly McGillis, 64) and Goose’s wife, Carole (Meg Ryan, 62) — were not asked to return for the sequel. Speaking to “Insider” this month, “Top Gun: Maverick” director Joseph Kosinski said that’s simply because “those weren’t stories that we were throwing around.” The new film sees Maverick training his late pal Goose’s son, Rooster, played by Miles Teller. “I didn’t want every storyline to always be looking backwards,” Joseph explained. “It was important to introduce some new characters.”The director’s response echoes comments Tom made at the May 6 premiere when he said the two movies had to feel like “chapters” that are connected, without making the sequel into “something that is visually and story-wise the same character and same kind of world.” There may be another factor in play, though. The main “new characters” who show up on the promo posters alongside Tom and Val are primarily pilots-in-training, played by actors age 40 or younger. Speaking to Entertainment Tonight in 2019 about not being asked back for the sequel, Kelly McGillis said, among other things: “I’m old, and I’m fat, and I look age-appropriate for what my age is. And that is not what that whole [famous love] scene is about.” For what it’s worth, 59-year-old Tom, aka-Maverick’s love interest, Penny, is played in the new film, by Jennifer Connelly. At 51, Jennifer’s still eight years younger than Tom — but as Express recently reported, she’s also his “first romantic co-star over the age of 50.” “Top Gun: Maverick” hits theaters May 27.

RELATED: ‘Top Gun’ turns 35: Hollywood’s best pilot movies

Jessica Biel gushes about Justin Timberlake’s ‘surprising, hilarious’ marriage proposal

Jessica Biel still gets a little giggle when she recalls how her husband of nearly 10 years, Justin Timberlake, popped the questionback in 2011. During a chat with James Corden on “The Late, Late Show” this week, the “Candy” star gushed about the “nice and unexpected” — if “hilarious” — way Justin asked her to marry him. “We were in Montana on a piece of property that we owned at the time. We had snowboarded all day. It was in the middle of the winter. Waist-high snow … head-to-toe snowboarding outfits — hats, gloves, everything,” she told James on the Wednesday, May 11, episode of his show. “And we go up to the property to just check out how the foundation is looking. And all of a sudden, he gets down onto his knees and just sinks into the snow.” Laughing, she continued, “And then he looks up at me and holds up this ring and it was the most lovely, surprising, hilarious … ” Ever the voice of reason, James joked it was “bold” of the singer to snowboard “with a ring in your pocket.” He added, “That is not a decision I would make. That can only backfire.” It didn’t, of course, and the couple went on to say “I do” in October 2012. They also share two sons, Silas, 7, and 2-year-old Phineas, who Jessica once joked was their “secret Covid baby,” since they didn’t initially announce his birth in 2020.

RELATED: Jessica Biel and Justin Timberlake hold hands at the ‘Candy’ premiere, plus more of 2022’s cutest celebrity PDA

Kourtney Kardashian admits she broke her $1M engagement ring from Travis Barker

When Kourtney Kardashian arrived on the red carpet for the 2022 Oscars, her left hand was sparkling courtesy of the massive diamond ring Travis Barker slipped on her finger in October 2021. As we learn in this week’s episode of “The Kardashians,” however, the ring hasn’t exactly been Oscar-ready since Kourtney said “yes” to the Blink-182 drummer. In scene from the Thursday, May 12, edition of the new Hulu series, Kourtney admits to her mom, Kris Jenner, that she broke the ring — a Lorraine Schwartz piece estimated to be worth about $1 million, according to Page Six. “It’s actually getting fixed,” Kourtney says when Kris asks why she’s not wearing it. “[It’s] probably one of the worst things I’ve ever done in my whole life,” Kourtney continues. “I was sitting on my floor folding sweatshirts. I took the ring off and I put it next to me on the floor, like thinking it would be safe right next to me. I had to get something up above in my closet, and when I stepped down, I stepped on the ring. I was hysterically crying in my closet for hours, and then I called Travis. I was like, ‘I did something really, really bad.'” She goes on to say Travis’ reaction to the news was “the best,” while she veered into “nervous breakdown” territory. “I was just like, this is the most beautiful thing that I’ve ever had in my life, and how could I have done that?” she adds. “Travis picked it out, he designed it, he looked at so many stones and this was me in a stone and I thought that was really special.”

Diddy says he demanded Travis Scott perform at the 2022 Billboard Music Awards

As Travis Scott prepares to perform at this weekend’s Billboard Music Awards, Diddy is speaking out in support of the younger rapper, saying he orchestrated what will be Travis’ first televised performance since the 2021 Astroworld festival tragedy. In an Instagram video posted on Monday, May 9, Diddy told followers: “For the Billboard Music Awards this Sunday I made a request, I made a demand. I said ‘My brother Travis Scott has to perform. I’m executive producing, he has to perform,’ and NBC said ‘yes.'” He added, “It’s going down Sunday, Travis Scott will be performing … now that’s love.” Travis, who founded and co-produced the Astroworld festival, has avoided the spotlight since the November 2021 event, where a crowd surge during his set left 10 people dead and many more injured. Travis has said he could not hear or see what was happening when he was performing as the crush began. He’s also said he stopped performing multiple times for the sake of concert-goers’ safety. He and others affiliated with Astroworld are facing massive legal action from victims and their families, with some 4,900 claims of injuries and deaths sustained at the festival, according to a May 10 Rolling Stone report. Diddy, meanwhile, has continued to stick up for the star ahead of the awards show, telling REVOLT Black News this week: “There will be no canceling [of Travis] on my watch. Love is about forgiveness… so that was why it was important for me to have Travis Scott perform.”

Ashley Judd gets candid about Naomi Judd’s death

On “Good Morning America” on Thursday, May 12, actress Ashley Judd opened up about the death of her mother, Naomi Judd, confirming the singer died by suicide on April 30, and urging viewers who may be struggling to seek professional help.”We’re aware that although grieving the loss of a wife and a mother, we are, in an uncanny way, a public family,” Naomi said, explaining that she and her relatives hoped to address public interest in her mother’s death themselves so that they could choose how to handle it. “So that’s really the impetus for this timing. Otherwise, it’s obviously way too soon. So that’s important for us to say up front,” she explained. “Mom was a brilliant conversationalist, she was a star, she was an underrated songwriter,” Naomi continued later in the interview. “And she was someone who suffered from mental illness, you know, and had a lot of trouble getting off the sofa, except to go into town every day to the Cheesecake Factory, where all the staff knew and loved her. She was very isolated in many ways because of the disease. And yet there were a lot of people who showed up for her over the years, not just me.” Before the interview ended, Naomi pointed to resources that might help others who are suffering, such as the National Alliance for Mental Illness, which maintains a crisis hotline. Naomi was 76.

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