Brad Pitt Hits The British Grand Prix Racetrack
Brad Pitt joined Formula One’s drivers at the British Grand Prix Formula One racing event on Sunday, but this wasn’t just a case of a celebrity enjoying the perks of fame. The 59-year-old actor was at the Silverstone circuit in Northamptonshire, England, not just to watch Max Verstappen cruise to victory, but for his role in an upcoming Jerry Bruckheimer film about a retired racer (Pitt) who returns to the track to pace an up-and-coming hotshot driver.
If that plot sounds like Top Gun: Maverick, you’re not wrong: the movie’s director is Joseph Kosinski, who also helmed that blockbuster. There’s been a bit of confusion about the title of the Pitt project, which was briefly reported as Apex in a redacted tweet from ESPN F1. But whatever it’s called, it’s already drawing comparisons to the Tom Cruise franchise, with Collider calling it “‘Top Gun’ on a racetrack.” (Let’s move quickly past the observation that that was also the sales pitch for 1990’s despised-by-NASCAR Cruise-starrer Days of Thunder, the film that brought Cruise and eventual wife Nicole Kidman together.)
Pitt posed with fans at the racetrack, Deadline reports, and joined in the drivers’ official pre-race meeting. According to F1 world champion Lewis Hamilton, who came in third today, the meeting was “probably the best drivers’ briefing we’ve ever had.”
Today wasn’t Pitt’s first day at the Silvertone track. Photos of the production have leaked since Wednesday, Sky Sports noted, including images of the car Pitt’s fictional driver, reportedly named “Sonny Hayes,” will pilot. The Daily Mail shared photos of Pitt taken Saturday at the track, in which Pitt and co-star Damson Idris donned logo-laden white firesuits for their fictional team.
Collider also reported that the duo also took to the track this weekend, hitting speeds of over 150 mph. Speaking with Sky Sports, Pitt said he “wasn’t nervous when I was out on the track today,” even though “as a civilian, I had no idea what it takes to be a driver. The aggression and dexterity, I have so much respect for it.”