Michael J Fox Reveals his Vices

When you hear the name Michael J. Fox, you may think of Marty McFly from the “Back to the Future” movies. You may think of Alex P. Keaton from the ’80s sitcom “Family Ties.” You may think of Parkinson’s disease.

As you can probably imagine, when Fox was first diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, it was hard to deal with. He was told that there was no cure and that his symptoms would only get worse. Imagine being a young man and a successful actor who in theory has his whole life ahead of him only to be told that you have a brain disease that will never go away and will only continue to make life more difficult.

It was hard for Fox to accept this news. In his new documentary, “Still: A Michael J. Fox Movie,” which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival on Friday January 20, 2023, Fox shared an inside look at how he came to terms with his diagnosis.

At first, Fox chose to try to hide his diagnosis from himself and the world. He hid it from himself by turning to alcohol to try to temporarily forget his problems. He hid it from the world by taking drugs strategically to hide his symptoms. He explained in the documentary, “Therapeutic value, comfort – none of these were the reason I took these pills. There was only one reason: to hide.” He added, “I became a virtuoso of manipulating drug intake so that I’d peak at exactly the right time and place.” In addition, when he was on a film or TV set he would make sure he was always holding a prop so that he could hide any tremors.

Eventually, Fox gave up hiding. He has been sober for 30 years, and he credits his wife, Tracy Pollan, and their four children with helping motivate him to get sober and stay sober. It wasn’t easy. He explained, “As low as alcohol had brought me, abstinence would bring me lower. I could no longer escape myself.”

Even after Fox gave up hiding from himself, he didn’t give up hiding from others so easily, but finally, in 1998, he went public with his diagnosis.

At Sundance, Fox sat down for an interview with The Hollywood Reporter. He was joined by the documentary’s director, Davis Guggenheim, and the film’s editor, Michael Hart. During the interview, the trio explained how relieved they were when the audience at Sundance laughed multiple times. They explained that the documentary is meant to be funny. Fox added that he is “happy” and wanted the documentary to be the same way.

Watch the video below to learn more about this honest yet humorous documentary about Fox’s life.

“Still: A Michael J. Fox Movie” will be eventually be streaming on Apple TV+.