Lockheed Martin, the American Aerospace and defence technology company, has created an exclusive webpage dedicated to Darkstar, the ‘Hypersonic Fighter Jet’, which makes an appearance in the recently released Tom Cruise starrer ‘Top Gun: Maverick’.
The company’s Chairman and CEO, James Taiclet, in his LinkedIn post, had earlier confirmed the involvement of the famous Skunk Works’ advanced projects division in the making of the fictional fighter Jet that appears in the movie. Now, the newly created website gives more details about the aircraft.
“When the Top Gun: Maverick team was looking to push the envelope and stand true to Maverick’s Need for Speed, Skunk Works was their first call. With Skunk Works’ expertise in developing the fastest known aircraft combined with a passion and energy for defining the future of aerospace, Darkstar’s capabilities could be more than mere fiction. They could be reality…,” the website states.
The last line of the above statement could be a hint that the Darkstar may not be entirely fictional after all. In fact, in a ‘Behind the Scenes’ video of the movie put out by Lockheed, Joseph Kosinskil, the director of the movie says that the design of Darkstar was based on the fastest aircraft, the SR-71 Blackbird, which Lockheed built in the 1960s. Meanwhile, the company is manufacturing its successor, the SR-72, which is reported to make its first flight in 2025.
“Working in partnership with Lockheed Martin and skunkworks, we were able to create darkstar, our full scale prototype for the film,” says Kosinskii. He adds that, although the design was based on the SR-71, the movie production team wanted it to go beyond that.
“We integrated their designers with our designers on the film side. We lowered it a little bit, also made it look a little bit sleeker and faster,” he adds.