Michael J Fox says he hasn’t ruled out returning to acting

After his film, Still, was honoured with a nomination.

Michael J Fox has said that he would act again “If I could figure it out” after previously positing his retirement. The Family Ties alum spoke to Entertainment Tonight about The Michael J. Fox Foundation’s A Country Thing Happened on the Way to Cure Parkinson’s event where he was asked if he would ever return to acting.

“If someone offers me a part and I do it and I have a good time, great,” the actor said. “I mean, the documentary was a big thrill,” Michael added, referring to Still: A Michael J Fox Story.

“I would do acting if something came up that I could put my realities into it, my challenges, if I could figure it out.”

Michael previously revealed that he struggled to remember his lines during his final television product in 2020 where he appeared in two episodes of The Good Wife’s spinoff, The Good Fight.

“I couldn’t remember the lines. I just had this blank,” Michael said on Mike Birbiglia’s Working It Out podcast in 2022. He also explained that because of this, he’s had to become selective about what projects he takes on in light of the effect of his Parkinson’s.

During the interview with Entertainment Tonight, Michael also touched on the standing ovation he received at the 2024 BAFTA awards saying that it was “really surprising”.

“I love it and I appreciate it, but I take it more as recognition of determination and resolve to solve the big problem, and that we all have the power to do whatever it is we can do to move things along,” Michael said of the standing ovation.

The veteran actor, who was presenting the award for Best Director, appeared on stage in a wheelchair. He then walked to the podium where he was met with applause and a standing ovation from the audience. Michael then presented Christopher Nolan with the award for Best Director.

The Back to the Future star attended the awards alongside his wife Tracy Pollan as his project, Still: A Michael J Fox Story, was nominated for Best Documentary. The documentary, which was released on Apple TV+ last year, follows Michael’s life and career after being diagnosed with Parkinson’s at just 29.

Stream Still: A Michael J Fox Story now on Apple TV+ with a 7 day free trial. Subscribe here.

Michael J Fox, the renowned actor known for his impressive career in film and television, is equally celebrated for his unwavering determination and activism in the fight against Parkinson’s disease, a condition that significantly altered the trajectory of his life.

Michael was first diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 1991 but did not reveal the diagnosis until 1998.

However, now the Back to the Future actor happily talks about Parkinson’s in the hopes of shedding more light on the disease that currently affects approximately 219,000 Australians.

In February 2024, Michael told The Guardian that as soon as he publicly shared his diagnosis, he became determined to find a cure for Parkinson’s.

“It just became my whole purpose. And then that was the answer. I didn’t have time to think about it. And Parkinson’s has been by far the most exciting thing – much more than my career,” he candidly shared.

“I don’t view any of this stuff as an opportunity to explore paths for myself,” the Spin City star clarified before sharing an optimistic belief:

“I think within the next 10, 15 years, we’ll have a viable solution [for Parkinson’s disease] in some form or another; whether it’s getting it cured or pathologically avoided… Will I be around for that? I doubt it. But it’s okay. I don’t think in personal terms – you just want to meet the moment. And I think the moment is nigh. For big, big answers.”

Similarly, in a November 2023 interview with Town & Country, Michael opened up about the difficulties he faces – for instance, just to speak clearly, Michael needs to regularly take medication that combats paralysis of facial muscles – but also how he tries not to think of his condition as a negative thing.

“I’ve said Parkinson’s is a gift. It’s the gift that keeps on taking, but it has changed my life in so many positive ways.”

Michael also explained why in 2000 he founded the Michael J Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research, which aims to cure Parkinson’s with “an aggressively funded research agenda.”

“Early on someone from a foundation gave me their pitch as to why I should come on [as an ambassador],” he said.

michael j fox in back to the future

“But then they said the most unusual thing. They said, ‘But if you don’t help us, don’t help them,’ pointing to another foundation. I got so mad. I said, ‘I’ve got to get in here and get this straightened out.’”

And straighten it out he did. Michael’s foundation has in the last 23 years been responsible for funding investigations that have resulted in more than 20 early-stage therapeutic programs, building the most robust dataset and biosample library in the history of Parkinson’s research, as well as many, many other impressive feats.

The Family Ties actor isn’t the only one happy to candidly speak about and advocate for Parkinson’s though. Michael’s wife and former co-star Tracey Pollan recently shared that it’s okay for those battling a serious illness to not to be optimistic 100 per cent of the time.

Speaking to Page Six at the ‘A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to Cure Parkinson’s’ annual gala on November 11, 2023, Tracey said, “I don’t think you need to feel the pressure be optimistic all the time…because it’s hard. Life is hard.”

Tracey added that the key is to “just put one foot in front of the other and lean on family and friends for support.”

What stage of Parkinson’s is Michael J Fox in?

Michael J Fox’s exact stage of Parkinson’s disease has, understandably, not been publicly disclosed. Parkinson’s disease is a progressive condition, and its stages can vary from person to person.

Fox was initially diagnosed with early-onset Parkinson’s disease, which typically starts before the age of 50.

How old was Michael J Fox when diagnosed with Parkinson’s?

Michael was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease when he was just 29 years old. This diagnosis came as a shock to him and his family, as Parkinson’s is more commonly associated with older age.

However, as aforementioned, his early-onset Parkinson’s diagnosis led him to become a prominent advocate for research and awareness of the condition.

michael j fox

How did Michael J Fox realise he had Parkinson’s?

In previous interviews, Michael has revealed that he first noticed tremors, stiffness, and difficulties with coordination, but initially attributed these symptoms to the stresses of his demanding acting career.

As the symptoms persisted and became more pronounced though, Michael sought medical advice.

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