Goose himself had this to say about how the sequel handled his character's legacy 36 years later.
Edwards gave the proverbial "two thumbs up" review Thursday while attending the world premiere of Jennifer Lopez's documentary, Halftime (drops June 14 on Netflix), at the opening night of the 2022 Tribeca Film Festival.
Edwards, who is one of more than five dozen jury members across 18 categories for the festival, admitted he hadn't seen Halftime yet because, in his words, "world premiere means world premiere," but he did have plenty to offer ET's Rachel Smith when it came to discussing how the sequel handled his character's legacy nearly four decades after the 1986 classic premiered.
For starters, the 59-year-old actor said he didn't see the world premiere of Top Gun: Maverick. In other words, he didn't feast his eyes on the mastery of the sound and visuals when the rest of the world did. As it so happens, being a Top Gun alum has its privileges.
"If you do the first move, you're lucky enough," Edwards admitted. "I was lucky enough that Tom [Cruise] called me up. He screened it for me in person."
The actor then brought his son, Bailey, into the interview and added, "So, we actually saw it at the Dolby screening room here in New York with the best sound ever, and there was just, like, eight of us watching it. It was fantastic."
Edwards portrayed LTJG Nick "Goose" Bradshaw in the OG film. His character (spoiler alert?) dies halfway through the film following an accident while ejecting from the F-14 jet he and Cruise's character, Pete "Maverick" Mitchell, were forced to abandon during a training exercise. Top Gun: Maverick paid homage to "Goose," not just with a barrage of pictures and flashbacks but also with the addition of Miles Teller, who plays "Goose's" grown-up son, Lt. Bradley "Rooster" Bradshaw.
And for Edwards, he's happy to be a part of the biggest movie in the world without having lifted a finger or uttering a single word. "It's the biggest movie that I'm in that I never had to show up for a day of work, so it was fun," he quipped.
Earlier this week, Top Gun: Maverick crossed the $600 million line at the box office worldwide as it eyes the $1 billion mark. Though its success can certainly be measured with those figures, some might argue its success also depends on what OG stars like Edwards think about the film. And for Edwards, it's a no-brainer.
"People had a certain feeling in the original one and that one [Top Gun: Maverick] does exactly what it felt like seeing it the first time, only more so," Edwards explained. "As I said to Tom, 'mission accomplished.' They did it. They really did though. It's a lot of work that went into that. It had the feel, it had the tone, it had what people wanted."