China Lake platform moved from TS hangar for Top Gun sequence

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Message posted by AsleepModeOn (Member since 08/08/2019) on December 26, 2022 at 13:22:02 PST:

Interesting snippet from the article from Joseph Kosinski, the director of Top Gun: Maverick. Link is below.

I went to China Lake Naval Air Station, which is a Navy base out in the desert. I'm sure you drive near it when you drive up to Mammoth. It's off to the right, and it encompasses a huge amount of desert out there. But I was doing a tour of the base looking for a hangar for the Darkstar sequence. And they said, "You can take pictures as long as you don't point your camera over there." I look over there, and there's this really interesting looking hangar with a tower and barbed wire around it and a blue door. And I'm like, "What is that?" And they're like, "Oh, don't even think about it. You're never going to be able to shoot over there. Don't take a picture of it. Don't even look at it." I'm like, "Well can we drive by it if I don't take a picture?" And they're like, "Okay, fine. We can drive by, but you can't take a picture."

So we go, and we drive by it, and I look at it, and it's just perfect. I mean, it looks like a top secret hangar inside a top secret base. And I'm like, "We have this sequence where we've got this secret airplane that they pull out at night, and it just looks like that's the perfect spot for it." And they said, "Well it's no surprise that you're interested in that particular building." So, I'm like, "Oh man, wow. It'd be great to shoot there. That's too bad." So, a couple days later, I get a call. And they're like, "Okay, if you tell us when you want to shoot there, we'll take what's in there, and we'll move it out a few days before so you'll have a building." And we ended up getting to shoot at the top secret hangar, and we really built Darkstar, and we put it in a hangar.

And when we pulled it out for the shoot, I was told that certain satellites owned by other countries actually moved in space to take pictures of it. I guess they were able to track that, which I thought was just amazing. If they were able to zoom in very close, they'd see Tom Cruise is in the cockpit, which is pretty cool.

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