Top Gun: Maverick trailer shows Tom Cruise flying jets

The first trailer for the sequel to hit 1986 film Top Gun has been released and it features a lot of what fans want - Tom Cruise flying jets.

The actor surprised a crowd at Comic-Con by appearing on-stage to introduce the trailer.

Top Gun: Maverick is a "love letter to aviation", Cruise said, adding that all the flying in the trailer is real.

"Everything you see in this film is real. We're working with the Navy. I wanted to give you an experience of being inside that aircraft," says Cruise.

There are some reports that Cruise himself piloted fighter jets in the film, although Entertainment Weekly says that isn't the case as "civilians are not allowed to use government equipment, particularly militarised jets".

But the movie star is a licensed pilot and does indeed fly "certain aircraft" in the film for real.

He famously piloted a helicopter during its dangerous stunt-flying sequence in Mission: Impossible - Fallout, which was filmed in New Zealand.

The new Top Gun is directed by Tron: Legacy's Joseph Kosinski after Tony Scott, the original's filmmaker, died in 2012.

Alongside Cruise, the film also stars Val Kilmer, Jennifer Connelly, Ed Harris, Jon Hamm and Miles Teller.

Top Gun: Maverick will be released in New Zealand cinemas on June 25, 2020.