Val Kilmer has officially returned to acting in the Tom Cruise-led blockbuster, and his character's story arc is fittingly completed in the film. But did the 'Iceman' die in 'Maverick'?
The sequel to the 1986 hit was finally released after a long delay, and audiences loved it, pushing the box office to the skies. Aside from the great action scenes, one scene in particular caught fans' attention – Pete Mitchell's meeting with his former adversary and now Navy Admiral Tom 'The Iceman' Kazansky (Val Kilmer). Although the actor appeared briefly in the film, fans were happy to see him back on screen after he was diagnosed with throat cancer and lost his voice completely.
In the scene in question, Admiral Kazansky turns out to be the only high-ranking officer who supported Mitchell's assignment to teach recruits how to pilot incredibly fast military planes, and this support allowed Cruise's character to finally believe in himself and break a new world record to impress his cocky students. In the film, 'Iceman' is shown dying, as Kilmer's character suffers from an incurable disease. And the contrast between Cruise's healthy body and spirit and Kilmer's aged face and AI voice really made the whole scene work and brought tears to the eyes of millions of fans.
'Iceman' did die in 'Top Gun Maverick', and the funeral scene of Mitchell mourning his friend's death was one of the most heartbreaking moments in Cruise's and Kilmer's legendary careers.