At one time, he was one of the biggest movie stars on the planet, with a string of hits such as the Back to the Future trilogy under his belt. But then, at the age of just twenty nine, Michael J. Fox was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease which led to a long, slow decline and the end of his time as a lead movie actor. Through it all his wife Tracy has stood by his side. This is the incredible story of Michael J. Fox, his wife Tracy and the secrets that have kept their marriage strong for over thirty years …
Born In Canada
Michael Andrew Fox was born in the city of Edmonton in Canada on the 9th of June 1961. His father, William, was in the Canadian armed forces, meaning young Michael moved around a lot in his early years due to his father being stationed at various bases around the country. It wasn’t until 1971 that the Fox family finally settled down in Vancouver when William Fox retired.
His First TV Role
Michael was interested in acting from a very early age. At the age of fifteen, he was cast in the sitcom Leo and Me as a young man living on a decrepit yacht with his uncle. Four members of the Leo and Me cast and crew went on to develop Parkinson’s disease, leading many to speculate that there was some underlying factor linking the cases.
Moving To The States
In 1979, Fox moved to LA to further his acting career. He registered with the Screen Actors Guild and discovered there was already another actor registered under the name ‘Michael Fox’. Michael added the ‘J’ to his name in honour of the Bonnie and Clyde actor, Michael J. Pollard.
His Big Break
After appearing in a couple of movies, Michael landed the role that would catapult him to stardom when he was cast as the character Alex in the NBC sitcom, Family Ties. The show was a huge success, earning Michael three Emmy awards and a Golden Globe. The hit sitcom ran for seven seasons from 1982 to 1989.
It was on the set of Family Ties that Michael met his future wife, Tracy Pollan. Born in New York on the 22nd of June 1960, Tracy hailed from a prominent Jewish family and had studied acting at the prestigious Lee Strasburg Institute. She was cast as the character Ellen Reed in Family Ties in 1985, and stayed with the show for two years.
Hitting It Off
Tracy had been in a relationship with the actor Kevin Bacon before she met Michael in 1985. The pair first met on the set of Family Ties. They met up again when Tracy was cast in Bright Lights, Big City, a movie in which Michael was playing one of the lead roles. Michael asked Tracy went out for dinner one night and the two hit it off.