How Did Miles Teller Get His Facial Scars? The Story Behind The Top-Gun Stars’ Scars

Simply said, Miles Teller has one of those faces. Over the past ten years, the actor has amassed an amazing body of work, playing leading roles in both big-budget action pictures and character-driven smaller films. When the long-awaited sequel to 1986’s “Top Gun,” “Top Gun: Maverick,” eventually arrives in theatres in May of 2022, audiences who may not yet be familiar with Teller will probably soon be able to do so. Teller portrays Bradley “Rooster” Bradshaw, the son of Nick “Goose” Bradshaw (Anthony Edwards), the former radio intercept officer, best friend, and partner in crime of Pete “Maverick” Mitchell (Tom Cruise), in the first movie. It’s truly uncanny how much these two unconnected performers resemble one another, thus Teller was a good pick for the role.

In the 2010 film “Rabbit Hole,” in which he costarred with Nicole Kidman, Teller made his feature film debut. He assumed the part of Willard in the 2011 remake of “Footloose,” which was originally portrayed by Chris Penn in the 1984 original. In the coming-of-age film “The Spectacular Now” from 2013, which earned the special jury prize at the Sundance Film Festival (per IMDb), Teller gave his breakthrough performance, demonstrating for the first time that he could hold his own as a leading man. His other filmography includes the “Divergent” trilogy, “War Dogs,” “The Fantastic Four,” and the Oscar-nominated “Whiplash.” It’s hard to imagine that Teller once had his acting opportunities rejected due to his facial scars given his widespread popularity today.

John Cameron Mitchell made Teller’s scars a strength

In an interview with Peter Travers, Miles Teller claimed that “Rabbit Hole” director John Cameron Mitchell didn’t just cast him in his first film despite having facial scars; rather, he did it at least in part because he recognised them as a strength. According to Teller, Mitchell claimed that his scars gave his role in the movie a new dimension. In “Rabbit Hole,” Teller plays the driver of a car that murdered a little kid in a tragic accident, so the origin of his scars parallels the fictional tragedy, in addition to the mystique they give Teller’s character.

The following films in which Teller would be featured were “The Spectacular Now” and “Whiplash,” both of which featured crucial scenes in which Teller’s character is involved in a car accident. In the end, it seems as though his facial scars helped him rather than hurt him, moulding or directing him to parts in which this component of his appearance becomes a special strength of his.

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Of course, Teller’s filmography is not simply about auto accidents, as his prominent part in the upcoming “Top Gun: Maverick” shows. When Teller’s casting was revealed back in 2018, he outperformed Glen Powell and Nicholas Hoult, with whom he had auditioned for the part. So it’s reasonable to assume that at this point Teller is free of his injury and the difficulties it brought about for him early in his career.

Miles Teller survived a car accident

Miles Teller disclosed that his face was injured and subsequently damaged when he was a young adult in an interview with film critic Peter Travers for ABC News’ “Popcorn With Peter Travers.” This then had an impact on his growing acting career. Teller said that when he was 20 years old and a college student, he was seriously hurt in a car accident caused by his friend, who lost control of the vehicle while operating it at 80 mph. According to Teller, the automobile rolled eight times in total and flung him fifty feet away. The actor was in such severe state after being flung from the car that his pal believed he might have passed away. Fortunately, Teller survived the tragedy, although suffering serious facial injuries.

After the incident, Teller underwent a series of gruelling surgeries over the course of almost four years to remove the scar tissue that developed as a result of his wounds. It turns out that he still has some gravel implanted in his face, which, according to his physicians, would worsen the damage if it were to be removed.

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Teller’s post-auto accident appearance for a period prevented him from pursuing his acting goals. People would say, “Yeah, Miles is a wonderful actor, [but it] doesn’t make sense for this character to have scars,” when he first started auditioning, he recalled. “[The scars] were pretty awful before.”

Eventually, though, a filmmaker gave Teller a chance when others would not, setting him on the career path he follows today.


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Being a binge-watcher himself, finding Content to write about comes naturally to Divesh. From Anime to Trending Netflix Series and Celebrity News, he covers every detail and always find the right sources for his research.

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