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The best photos from the Tokyo Olympics

The 2020 Olympics officially opened today with a barrage of fireworks, nods to Japan’s history and culture, and a mesmerizing drone display over Tokyo’s night sky. And, of course, without fans there to see it. 

The pomp of these games is unlikely to escape its circumstance — namely, that the quadrennial event is being staged a year late, in front of empty grandstands, against the will of many in Japan and at the risk of infection for those involved.

Take a look at the best photos of the opening ceremonies.

Performers dance during the opening ceremony Friday.
Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

An overhead view of Osaka lighting the cauldron. The cauldron was designed in the shape of a cherry blossom.Morry Gash/AP
Tennis star Naomi Osaka lights the Olympic cauldron with the Olympic torch.
Matthias Hangst/Getty Images
The Olympic flag is raised near the end of Friday’s opening ceremony.Kirsty Wigglesworth/AP
Tonga’s flag bearers Malia Paseka (left) and Pita Taufatofua lead their delegation.
Hannah McKay/AFP via Getty Images
A performer at the opening ceremony. The Tokyo Games officially began Friday after a year’s delay due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Sergei Bobylev/Tass via Getty Images
Live performers pose as the triathlon pictogram during the opening ceremony. There are 50 sports taking place this year in the Tokyo Olympics, and all of their pictograms were acted out by the performers.Sergei Bobylev/TASS/Getty Images

Dancers perform during the opening ceremony.
David J. Phillip/AP

Ireland’s flag bearers Kellie Harrington and Brendan Irvine carry the Irish tricolor flag.
Brendan Moran/Sportsfile via Getty Images

Supporters outside the Olympic Stadium take pictures of the fireworks lighting up the sky over Tokyo.
Philip Fong/AFP via Getty Images

Performers take part in the opening ceremony.
Fabrizio Bensch/Reuters

Flag bearers Hannah Mills and Mohamed Sbihi of Great Britain lead out their team during the open ceremony.
Joe Giddens/PA Images via Getty Images
Japanese jazz composer Hiromi Uehara plays the piano during the opening ceremony.Matthias Hangst/Getty Images

A view inside the Olympic Stadium with fireworks during the opening ceremony.
Matthias Hangst/Getty Images

Flag bearers Laura Ludwig and Patrick Hausding of Germany lead their team out during the opening ceremony.
Cameron Spencer/Getty Images

Performers take part in the opening ceremony.
Matthias Hangst/Getty Images
Athletes from the United States march during the customary parade of nations.David J. Phillip/AP

Jill Biden, the first lady of the United States, takes part in a moment of silence during the opening ceremony.Dylan Martinez/Pool/Getty Images
A security officer looks out over an empty stadium before the opening ceremony.
David J. Phillip/AP

A member of Egypt’s team waves a flag during the opening ceremony.
Hannah McKay /Pool/Getty Images

The Japanese national flag comes onto the stage during the opening ceremony.
Cameron Spencer/Getty Images

More than 1,800 drones form the shape of a globe during the opening ceremony.
Kiichiro Sato/AP

The start of the ceremony reflected the isolated training that many athletes had to do during the pandemic.Patrick Smith/Getty Images
The Olympic cauldron is seen as the Japanese flag is raised during the national anthem.
Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

A performer acts during the opening ceremony.
Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Members of Team USA take in the atmosphere of the Games during the opening ceremony.
Matthias Hangst/Getty Images

A traditional song gets a showcase during the opening ceremony.
Jan Woitas/picture alliance via Getty Images

The Japanese flag is carried during the opening ceremony. After the Japanese National Anthem was sung, a moment of silence was called to remember the global victims of the Covid-19 pandemic.Morry Gash/AP

Performers at the opening ceremony.
Stanislav Krasilnikov/Tass via Getty Image

Flag bearers Anna Korakaki and Eleftherios Petrounias of Greece lead their teammates out during the opening ceremony.
Maja Hitij/Getty Images

A view from outside the Olympic Stadium offers a fireworks showcase.
Lintao Zhang/Getty Images

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