Glen Powell’s The Hanged Man has become an important part of Top Gun: Maverick but the character hadn’t been so impactful and iconic when he first auditioned. Tom Cruise’s film became one of his biggest projects, much to his surprise, and it benefited everyone involved in the film, including Powell. The first film was an integral part of Cruise’s life, and so the upcoming sequel quickly became one of the most important aspects of it.
The Implement The actor wasn’t too keen on taking on the role, given that he was originally auditioning for the role of Rooster, Goose’s son. That wasn’t what the film had in store for him, however, as the role would then be taken on by Miles Teller and Powell would act as a rival character.
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Glen Powell didn’t want to play the two-dimensional Hangman personality
Glen Powell was far from interested in playing Jake ‘Hangman’ Seresin, as he felt the character lacked a lot of depth and his personality was rather sly and didn’t have much to please. He even stated that Hangman was basically just another Draco Malfoy who was in the Navy.
Top Gun: Maverick saw the return of Tom Cruise in the lead role after more than three decades. He focused on his character and all the changes that had happened in his life, which he was unwilling to go through or was too afraid to face. This included the death of his former teammate, Goose, whose son happened to be one of the pilots in training. Maverick is asked to form a whole new team that will face a mission that could put his life in danger. Among these new trainees were Miles Teller’s Rooster and Glen Powell’s Hangman, originally known as Slayer.
“He was there to add conflict to the Rooster character, which is a good thing, but he wasn’t three-dimensional and he had no rewards. I didn’t know why he existed. It was an act Looking back, I’m like, God, I can’t imagine if I missed this one, but it wasn’t so obvious.
Glen Powell was far from keen on playing the character and it took Tom Cruise, director Joseph Kosinski, the producer and the writer all together to convince the actor not to walk away from the role.
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Glen Powell brought Hangman to life
Many of the character’s artistic choices, including the name change from Slayer, were made with input from the actor. Even if Powell was highly regarded, it would be hard to disagree with his assertion that Hangman wasn’t crafted to perfection. Although he was entertaining to watch, especially when playing with Maverick and Rooster, not much was known about him other than the fact that he was an arrogant but capable Marine pilot. Even though he had some character growth at the end of the movie, that doesn’t exactly make him a fully developed player.
Glen Powell gave character to Hangman very nicely, doing away with his concept of being purely a two-dimensional character. His growth, though minimal, was evident. This included his admiration for Maverick and his respect and trust for Rooster.
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