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Actor Michael J. Fox first achieved stardom as Alex P. Keaton on the popular sitcom Family Ties and went on to have great success with other film and TV roles.
Learn why Michael J. Fox and his co-stars felt that the seventh year of "Family Ties" should be its final year.
Michael J. Fox discusses what it is like to live and cope with Parkinson's disease.
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Michael J. Fox was born June 9, 1961, in Canada. He first became known for his role as Alex P. Keaton on the popular sitcom Family Ties, and went on to star in such films as Back to the Future and Teen Wolf as well as the TV series Spin City. In 1999, he announced that he was battling Parkinson's Disease. He left Spin City in 2000 but later guest starred on such shows as Scrubs and Boston Legal.
My happiness grows in direct proportion to my acceptance, and in inverse proportion to my expectations.
Actor. Born Michael Andrew Fox, on June 9, 1961, in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Fox began using the middle initial 'J' (presumably smoother-sounding than 'A') professionally to distinguish himself from another acting "Michael Fox." Michael J. Fox first achieved stardom in 1982, as the acquisitive Reagan-era poster-boy Alex P. Keaton on the popular television sitcom Family Ties.
Hailing from Canada, where he grew up the youngest of five children to Bill and Phyllis Fox, Michael struggled in school and was too small - he is five feet, four inches tall - to compete in his favorite activity, ice hockey. He found an outlet in drama class, and in 1976 made his professional debut in the CBS series Leo and Me at age 15 (playing a 10-year-old). After starring in the CBS movie Letters from Frank (also filmed in Canada), Fox dropped out of high school and drove to Los Angeles with his father. There, he found work in the series Palmerstown, U.S.A. before landing the role in Family Ties, where he wooed audiences with his confident charm and impeccable comic timing for seven years.
He also had enormous success on the big screen, playing Marty McFly in Robert Zemeckis' zany romp, Back to the Future (1985). After playing comic roles in Teen Wolf and The Secret of My Success, Fox wanted to broaden his range and took some unlikely dramatic turns, playing a factory worker in Light of Day, a cocaine-snorting fact checker in Bright Lights, Big City, and earning critical acclaim for his starring role alongside Sean Penn in Brian DePalma's Vietnam saga Casualties of War.
Audiences applauded Fox's return to Back to the Future, for sequels II and III in 1989 and 1990. His pitch-perfect portrayal of a George Stephanopoulos-type character in The American President (1995) earned Fox accolades once again, but it was his ceremonious return to prime time television in the ABC sitcom Spin City, which launched in 1996, that put Fox back where he belonged - delighting audiences on a weekly basis with a schedule that allowed him more time with his family. In 1999, he contributed his trademark voice and comic flare as the title character (a little white mouse) in the film adaptation of E.B. White's Stuart Little.
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