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Michael J. Fox Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (4) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (1) | Trade Mark (4) | Trivia (60) | Personal Quotes (15) | Salary (6)

Overview (4)

Date of Birth 9 June 1961Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
Birth NameMichael Andrew Fox
Nickname Mike
Height 5' 4½" (1.64 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Michael J. Fox was born Michael Andrew Fox on June 9, 1961 in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. His parents, Phyllis Fox (née Piper), a payroll clerk, and William Fox, moved their ten-year-old son, his three sisters, Kelli Fox, Karen and Jacki and his brother Steven to Vancouver, British Columbia, after his father, a sergeant in the Canadian Army Signal Corps, retired. It was during these years that Michael developed his desire to act. At age 15, he successfully auditioned for the role of a 10-year-old in a series called Leo and Me (1978). Gaining attention as a bright new star in Canadian television and movies, Michael realized his love for acting when he appeared on stage in "The Shadow Box". At age 18, he moved to Los Angeles and was offered a few roles in television series but early acting success ended fast when the roles stopped coming. For a while, he survived on boxes of macaroni and cheese. Then his agent called to tell him that he got the part of Alex P. Keaton on the situation comedy Family Ties (1982). He starred in the feature films Teen Wolf (1985), High School U.S.A. (1983), Poison Ivy (1985) and Back to the Future (1985).

- IMDb Mini Biography By: A. Nonymous

Spouse (1)

Tracy Pollan (16 July 1988 - present) (4 children)

Trade Mark (4)

Usually plays easygoing, even-tempered nice guy characters
Brown hair and blue eyes
Short stature
Youthful voice

Trivia (60)

Revealed in the December 7, 1998 issue of People magazine that he was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in 1991.
Listed as one of twelve "Promising New Actors of 1985" in John Willis' Screen World, Vol. 37.
Parents are William and Phyllis Fox.
Adopted the "J." as an homage to character actor Michael J. Pollard.
Owned a black Ferrari Mondial coupe (1987).
Quit high school before graduating from his senior year. Has said he regrets quitting high school as a "stupid youthful mistake".
Has forbidden any of his kids to quit high school for Hollywood, demanding that they at least finish high school and maybe attend 1-2 years of college.
According to an interview with Fox, he originally decided to use the middle initial J instead of his own A because he didn't want teen magazines to use headlines such as "Michael, A Fox!".
Is a vegetarian.
Younger sister is stage (Stratford and Shaw Festivals) and television actress Kelli Fox.
Was not the first choice to play Alex P. Keaton on Family Ties (1982). He was only chosen after Matthew Broderick, who was originally considered for the role, refused to have a long-term television obligation.
Has written his own book titled "Lucky Man" about Parkinson's and other things he has to deal with in life.
When filming Doc Hollywood (1991), he noticed his finger twitching. He was unable to control it. He then saw a doctor and was diagnosed with Parkinson's.
Although he never received a real high school diploma, Fox was given an honorary high school diploma from John Dewey High School in Coney Island, Brooklyn, New York, when he spoke at their graduation in 1984.
Has a theatre named after him located in his hometown of Burnaby, Brtitish Columbia, Canada.
Received his General Educational Development in 1995.
Received his first guitar for Christmas when he was 8. He taught himself how to play.
He was on Planet Hollywood's Wall of Fame.
Received a star of the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 7021 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, California on December 16, 2002.
Good friends with Boston Bruins legend Cam Neely. He attended the retirement of Neely's number on January 12, 2004 at the Fleet Center in Boston.
NBC President Brandon Tartikoff didn't initially like him because he couldn't see his face looking good on a lunch box. Ironically, Fox did not allow this type of marketing when Family Ties (1982) became popular.
Negotiated the deal for Family Ties (1982) from a phone booth outside a now defunct Pioneer Chicken restaurant in Hollywood because he had no phone at home. He was told the network would need to call, and he said he was only home between the hours of four and five. He waited for the call, and fortunately he was there to answer it and secure the Family Ties (1982) role.
Accidentally injured co-star James Woods's finger on the set of The Hard Way (1991). Woods was throwing him into a popcorn machine when his finger got caught in the button hole of Fox's jacket and dislocated it.
Orginally, Robert Zemeckis and Bob Gale were unable to get Michael J. Fox, their first choice for the role of Marty McFly due to scheduling conflicts. The role had then gone to Eric Stoltz. After filming for six weeks, Eric Stoltz was let go from the film because Robert Zemeckis and Bob Gale felt he was "too intense" for the character. Michael J. Fox, who was then available, accepted when asked again and took over the role of Marty McFly.
Announced he is leaving Spin City (1996) because of Parkinson's disease. [January 2000]
He, Jim Carrey and the late Raymond Burr head the list of top Canadians in American television compiled by Banff Television Festival. [June 2002]
Family Ties (1982) creator Gary David Goldberg did not like Michael after his first audition, stating that he played Alex too smart-alecky. Casting director Judith Weiner fought for him, so Goldberg gave him one more chance. He approached the second audition differently and was later called and offered the role.
There is a pub in London, Ontario, called "The Alex P. Keaton" in honor of his character on Family Ties (1982).
Due to his suffering from Parkinson's Disease, during his run on Spin City (1996), he often hid his left hand in his pocket.
Ranked #23 in TV Guide's list of "TV's 25 Greatest Teen Idols" (January 23, 2005 issue).
His best-known roles, Alex P. Keaton and Marty McFly, both contain numerous references to Ronald Reagan. Alex P. Keaton is a conservative Republican whose hero is Ronald Reagan. In Back to the Future (1985), Marty informs an incredulous Doc Brown that Ronald Reagan, the actor, becomes the President of the United States. In Back to the Future Part II (1989), Marty goes into the Cafe 80s, which is "hosted" by a computer-generated video image of President Reagan. In Back to the Future Part III (1990), Michael almost got to work with Reagan himself. By this time, Reagan's second term was drawing to a close, if not already over, so director Robert Zemeckis offered him the role of the 1885 mayor of Hill Valley (which may have been in reference to Reagan's first public office, that of Governor of California). Reagan declined.
When he was paying his dues as a struggling actor in Hollywood, he sold half of a sectional couch to a neighbor, and sold paper back books to a local bookstore for cash to buy groceries. He also had to borrow money from his parents to pay the rent, shortly before he landed the role in Family Ties (1982).
He donated many items to Rocky Stone to be given to less fortunate kids as part of the Toy Mountain Campaign.
Having both American and Canadian passports, he also lived near the Nantucket Bay area of the Eastern United States.
Once lived in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
In 1982, appeared on the first episode of the Peter Marshall wish-fulfilling series Fantasy (1982). Marshall mentioned that Fox was a great fan of James Cagney, then drew Fox's attention to a video screen. Cagney appeared in a taped statement, telling Fox "Keep a-goin'!" This brought tears to Fox's eyes. Marshall then announced that Cagney had personally selected Fox to play him in a developing biopic about the legendary actor. Fox was overwhelmed with joy, but sadly, the film never got made.
He and his wife paid $6,300,000 for a newly built, six-bedroom house in Quogue, New York (2008).
Met his wife, Tracy Pollan, on his situation comedy Family Ties (1982).
Received an honorary degree (Doctor of Fine Arts) from New York University in May 2008.
Received an honorary degree (Doctor of Laws) from the University of British Columbia on May 22, 2008.
Received a star on Canada's Walk of Fame in Toronto, Ontario in September 2008.
Michael J. Fox was invited by Sandeep Marwah President AAFT to visit the Asian Academy of Film and Television in film city Noida, India to interact with film and acting students.
Admits there was a period when he was living, and working in the United States illegally, and would not return to Canada, for fear of not being allowed back in to the United States. Had to hire immigration lawyers to "straighten it all out".
As he revealed in his autobiography "Lucky Man", he happened to be sitting right next to Princess Diana at the world premiere of Back to the Future (1985).
Michael was the first guest on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (1996) when Jon Stewart took over as host on January 11, 1999.
Longtime friends with Denis Leary. They both share a love of hockey.
Brother-in-law of Michael Pollan.
His father William Fox died on January 6, 1990.
Fox was a supporter of then-candidate Barack Obama during the 2008 presidential election. He says in "Always Looking Up" that on Election Day, he went to vote wearing a t-shirt reading "Barack to the Future" that a friend had made for him; the shirt's words and design were both references to Fox's famous role in the "Back to the Future" movies.
Fox says in his autobiography "Always Looking Up" that although he was raised nominally Anglican, he is now a member of a Reform Jewish congregation in New York. His wife, Tracy Pollan, was raised Jewish; their wedding ceremony had Jewish ritual elements (including a chuppah, the traditional Jewish wedding canopy); and their four children are being raised Jewish.
In 2010, he was given an honorary doctorate by Sweden's Karolinska Institute, the same organization that awards the Nobel Prize in medicine. The honor was given in recognition of his work in advocating a cure for Parkinson's disease.
In his book "Always Looking Up" (2009), he reveals that in 2000 he and his entire family flew from Paris back to New York on a Concorde on a Monday, the day before the Concord plane crash occurred. Originally, they had considered flying on Tuesday, the same day the plane crashed. When Michael heard about the tragedy on the news, he was so shocked and relieved that he immediately started crying.
Was considered for the role of Conrad in Ordinary People (1980) but Timothy Hutton, who went on to win the Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his performance, was cast instead.
Fox has often recounted that when he went to tell one of his teachers that he was about to drop out of high school to pursue an acting career, the teacher told him, "Fox, you're not going to be cute forever", to which Fox responded, "Maybe just long enough, sir". When he retold the story on David Letterman's show in 2011, Fox added, "it turns out we were both right".
His quote, "Pain is temporary, film is forever", is from the comedy movie Three O'Clock High (1987).
Pictured on one of a set of four nondenominated ("permanent") Canadian postage stamps commemorating Difference Makers, issued 22 May 2012. Others honored in this issue were Rick Hansen, Sheila Watt-Cloutier and Louise Arbour.
Became a father for the 1st time at age 27 when his wife Tracy Pollan gave birth to their son Sam Michael Fox on May 30, 1989.
Became a father for the 2nd and 3rd time at age 33 when his wife Tracy Pollan gave birth to their daughters Aquinnah Kathleen Fox and Schuyler Phyllis Fox on February 15, 1995.
Became a father for the 4th time at age 40 when his wife Tracy Pollan gave birth to their daughter Esme Annabelle Fox on November 3, 2001.
His acting mentor was Gary David Goldberg.

Personal Quotes (15)

Pain is temporary, film is forever.
I am careful not to confuse excellence with perfection. Excellence I can reach for; perfection is God's business.
(on his future wife Tracy Pollan) One day, she came back from lunch with bad breath and I said "Whoa, scampi for lunch?", and she said "You are the rudest son of a bitch I have ever met in my life" and I was immediately attracted to her like "Who is this woman?!".
[on being diagnosed with Parkinson's disease] People always ask me if I say to myself "Why me?" and I tell them, "Why not me?".
If 2 + 2 = 4 every time, what good is it? That's no fun.
In every aspect, I have been blessed with the opportunity to work toward leaving an impact on the world and on the lives around me and to be a partner in the critical research for answers.
[on Back to the Future Part II (1989)] I think this movie's gonna blow people away. It's just everything. It's everything... everything you go to movies for.
A creative mess is better than idle tidiness.
When you're a short actor you stand on apple boxes, you walk on a ramp. When you're a short star everybody else walks in a ditch.
After a year or so, I really thought I was Howard Hughes. Here I was at eighteen years old, getting all these checks...
Family is not an important thing. It's everything.
[on The Michael J. Fox Show (2013)] My view of life is colored by humor and looking at the best in any situation. One of the things I love about the show is that it gives me the opportunity to tell people who have disabilities or different challenges that they deal with, that you can step back into life. You can be a part of life. You just have to allow for the facts of your situation. Instead of hiding that or being in denial about it, put it out there. That's what I'm doing.
You hear people say "Keep your head down" when times are tough. But I find the opposite is better: Keep your head up!
In a happy marriage, there are no heroes. It's gotta be steam all the way!
[2014] Look at the choices you have, not at the choices that have been taken a way from you. In them, there are whole worlds of strength and new ways to look at things.

Salary (6)

Back to the Future (1985) $250,000
Teen Wolf (1985) $750,000
The Secret of My Succe$s (1987) $2,000,000
Back to the Future Part II (1989) $5,000,000
Back to the Future Part III (1990) $5,000,000
Greedy (1994) $5,000,000

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