Kurt Russell Reported The Famed Phoenix Lights UFO Sighting

On March 13, 1997, a series of eerie bright lights appeared in the skies over Arizona, Nevada, and northern Mexico. The mysterious lights went far from unnoticed, with thousands of people later attesting to having seen the same thing. Some even managed to snag some videos of the mysterious phenomenon, according to Fox 10 Phoenix.

The Phoneix Lights, as they came to be known, have remained unexplained since that night, despite so many eyewitness reports. At the time they were a media sensation — especially in Phoenix — though according to KTAR News, the sightings were initially treated as something of a joke. Fife Symington was the Governor of Arizona at the time, and after the sightings, he held a tongue-in-cheek press conference with one of his staff members dressed like an alien. However, Symington went on to admit that he had seen the lights as well, and despite being a pilot himself and being familiar with an array of aircraft, he had no explanation for the lights.

Symington wasn't the only pilot who happened to see the Phoenixx Lights, another pilot was flying that evening and they spotted the anomaly above Phoenix. That pilot was none other than actor Kurt Russell, per Page Six.

Kurt Russel is an avid aviation enthusiast

Kurt Russell is, of course, best known as an actor having appeared in a wide range of films from "Escape From New York" to "The Hateful Eight" to "Miracle," per IMDb. In addition to acting, Russell was also at one point a professional baseball player where he spent some time in the minor leagues playing both single and double-A ball in the 1970s, per Baseball Reference.

According to Puget Sound Business Journal, Kurt Russell has been flying for decades and has owned a variety of aircraft including biplanes and gliders, and was even known to try his hand at performing acrobatic maneuvers. Russell was also known to fly himself and his long-time partner, Goldie Hawn, to vacation hotspots like Aspen, British Columbia, and Palm Springs. According to Golf Hotel Whiskey, Russell stated in an interview with Airport journals that flying was in his blood, as his grandfather was an experienced pilot who at one point even served as a test pilot for billionaire Howard Hughes' Hughes Aircraft Company.

Kurt Russell and the Phoenix Lights

In 2017, Kurt Russell was promoting the film "Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. II" in an interview with the BBC, when he recounted what happened to him on March 13, 1997, in the skies over Phoenix. Russell was flying Hawn's son, Oliver Hudson, to visit his girlfriend. "I was flying him to go see his girlfriend, and we were on approach," Russell said. "I saw six lights over the airport in absolute uniform in a V shape. Oliver said to me — I was just looking at him, I was coming in, we're maybe a half a mile out — and Oliver said, 'Pa, what are those lights?'"

Russell's sighting is similar to those that were reported across the region that same night. Where things diverge was that Russell and Hudson had a bird's eye view of the alleged UFO. Russell radioed air traffic control and told them what he was seeing, though according to Page Six, he was told there was no aircraft in the area. Russell explained that what happened that night drifted to the back of his mind until several years later when Goldie Hawn was watching a TV show about UFOs that covered the Phoenix Lights, and mentioned an identified pilot who called in a sighting. Russell realized that he was the pilot, and was able to confirm this with a quick check of his logbooks, per Flying.