Top Gun: Maverick actor thanks Lewis Hamilton for ‘the assist’ after landing role he dropped

Top Gun: Maverick actor Danny Ramirez has thanked Lewis Hamilton after the F1 driver spoke about his decision to turn down the role of Fanboy in the Tom Cruise film.

Ramirez starred as US Navy pilot Mickey “Fanboy” Garcia in the 2022 film, which saw Cruise reprise his role as Pete “Maverick” Mitchell from the 1986 classic.

Ramirez’s role was initially offered to Hamilton, who had to turn down the offer because filming clashed with his 2018 race for the F1 World Championship.

In an interview with GQ published on Monday (1 April), Hamilton admitted he “regretted” turning down the acting job.

“Firstly, I hadn’t even had, like, an acting lesson,” Hamilton recalled. “And I don’t want to be the one that lets this movie down. And then secondly, I just really didn’t have the time to dedicate to it. I remember having to tell Joe and Tom – and it broke my heart.”

On Twitter, Ramirez reacted to the interview saying: “When [Maverick director] Joe Kosinski introduced us and said that Lewis’ role was gonna be Fanboy, I thanked him for saying no haha.”

“Appreciate the assist @LewisHamilton,” he added alongside a laughing crying face emoji.

Hamilton went on to win the 2018 World Championship while Maverick was credited with “saving cinema” after the Covid pandemic, earning nearly $1.5bn at the global box office.

The racing driver is currently producing an untitled F1 movie starring Brad Pitt and Damson Idris.

“I felt my job really has been to try to call BS. ‘This would never happen.’‘This is how it would be.’ ‘This is how it could happen,’ Hamilton explained to GQ. “Just giving them advice about what racing is really about and what, as a racing fan, would appeal and what would not.”

Meanwhile, Ramirez was recently announced among the cast for The Last of Us season two.

Ramirez will play Manny, described as “a loyal soldier whose sunny outlook belies the pain of old wounds and a fear that he will fail his friends when they need him most”.

HBO’s video game adaptation was a smash hit for the network, garnering widespread acclaim including 24 nominations at the 75th Primetime Emmy Awards.

The events of series two will mirror those of the PlayStation game’s 2020 sequel (The Last of Us Part II), set five years after the events of the first game, and introduce a whole host of new characters.

Aside from returning protagonists Pedro Pascal as Joel and Bella Ramsey as Ellie, the new season will also feature Isabela Merced as Dina, Young Mazino as Jesse, and Kaitlyn Dever as Abby. Catherine O’Hara was also recently cast in an undisclosed role.