“During filming for ‘Doc Hollywood’ in 1991, I noticed spasms in my left pinkie finger. In about 6 months most of my hand was shaking and my shoulder was sore”. Michael J. Fox, an internationally renown star since “Back to the Future”, told weekly magazine ‘Grazia’ how he discovered his illness and what he has experienced in the past years.
At the age of 30, his career was cut short by Parkinson’s disease. Now, after years of silence, isolation, alcohol, and crisis (“Initially I reacted with rage, I just wanted to drink so I could avoid dealing with the situation,” said the actor), thanks to the help of his wife, Tracy Pollan, he has written a book: “Lucky Man” and has returned to television with “Michael J. Fox: Adventures of an Incurable Optimist”, a trip around the world interviewing well-known people, and not only about their idea of optimism. “I am investigating into the nature of optimism and hope, and the level of acceptance that helps you persevere and face every day in the best way possible.
Those who are sick will never know how nice it is to feel well again.” He says that he no longer wants to return to film-making: “I will not make films anymore. I don’t miss anything about the film industry. The ‘Stuart Little’ films (he was the voice of the mouse, editor’s note) were ideal for me because I just had to sit there in a dark room with headphones and a microphone”.
Now involved in politics and stem cell regulation reform, he finances research into Parkinson’s through his association, “The Michael J. Fox Foundation”. The only advice that he wants to give to people is to never forget that every day, in every moment it is possible to invent the future that you want. Death is the ending of everyone’s story. We all have to die sooner or later. Once you accept this, the problem becomes the quality of your life.”