The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences partnered with the United States Navy/U.S. Naval Air Forces for an unprecedented opening segment at the 95th Oscars®, airing live today, March 12, on ABC.  At the top of the show, hosted by Jimmy Kimmel, two aircraft flew 1,000 feet above the ground at 300 knots/345 mph over the Dolby® Theatre in Hollywood. 

Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 122, the “Flying Eagles,” located at Naval Air Station Lemoore, California, was the supporting squadron.  The mission of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 122 is to provide dynamic training to future Naval aviators and maintainers who operate and sustain the world’s most capable and lethal aircraft carrier-based strike fighter, the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, the backbone of the Navy’s carrier air wing. 

“Making an incredibly entertaining show was our top priority, and what better way to kick things off than with an unforgettable moment that sets the tone for the whole evening,” said executive producers and showrunners Glenn Weiss and Ricky Kirshner.  “A huge thank you to the U.S. Navy for helping execute a once-in-a-lifetime Oscars opening.” 

“As someone who grew up in a Naval Aviation family watching F-14s in Miramar, attended TOPGUN (U.S. Navy Fighter Weapons School) in 2012, and advised during filming on USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) in 2019, it’s an absolute honor to lead the flyover as a tribute to ‘Top Gun: Maverick,’” said Lt. Cmdr. Doug Morrow of VFA-122.  “The movie is the ultimate love letter to Naval Aviation and all the sailors around the globe who are currently standing watch.  It’s humbling to be a part of this year’s Oscars celebration.”

The 95th Oscars is airing live today, Sunday, March 12, 2023, at the Dolby Theatre at Ovation Hollywood and is being televised live on ABC and in more than 200 territories worldwide