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It turns out Kurt Russell, or maybe his “Escape from New York” alter ego Snake Plissken, is responsible for phoning in one of the leading UFO conspiracies out there.
In a BBC interview alongside “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” costar Chris Pratt, the 66-year-old actor said that in 1997, he was the pilot who first reported the Phoenix Lights incident in Arizona, in which thousands of people allegedly witnessed six lights, in formation, moving in the night sky.
Here’s how the conversation went down:
“I was the pilot,” Russell said in the interview. “Oliver and I were flying in; I was flying him to go see his girlfriend. And we were on approach. I saw six lights over the airport in absolute uniform in a V-shape… I was just looking at them and I was coming in, we were maybe a half mile out. [His son] Oliver said, ‘Pa, what are those lights?’ Then I kind of came out of my reverie and I said, ‘I don’t know what they are.’ He said, ‘Are we okay here?’ I said ‘I’m gonna call,’ and I reported it. They said…‘We don’t show anything.’
“I said, ‘Well, okay, I’m gonna declare it’s unidentified, it’s flying and it’s six objects.’ We landed, I taxied, dropped him off, took off and went back to L.A.
“I never said a word, he never said a word. I never thought of it. Two years later, [his wife] Goldie [Hawn] is watching a television show when I came home. And the show is on UFOs…And I’m kind of hearing the TV going. And I stopped and I started watching and it was on that event. And that was the most viewed UFO event, over 20,000 people saw that.
“I’m watching this and I’m feeling like Richard Dreyfuss in ‘Close Encounters of the Third Kind.’ I go, ‘What, why do I know this?’ And it’s not clear to me. And finally they said a general aviation pilot reported it on landing.
“I never thought of it since then and I said, ‘That was me, that was me! Wait a minute, I’ll go to my logbooks.’ So I went to my logbooks and there was that flight, at that time, and I didn’t mention anything about the UFO.
“The fascinating part of that, to me, was that it just went literally out of my head. And Oliver never mentioned it. Had I not seen the show I never would’ve thought of it again. That, to me, was the weird part.”
Needless to say, Pratt was convinced.