Michael J Fox gives emotional speech as he accepts honorary Oscar for Parkinson’s advocacy

Virgin Radio

21 Nov 2022, 15:01

Michael J. Fox

Credit: Getty

Michael J. Fox has given an emotional speech after accepting an honorary Oscar for his work on Parkinson’s disease research at the 13th annual Governors Awards.

The actor was diagnosed with the disease back in 1991, aged only 29, and has since raised more $1 billion (£1.7 billion) for research on the disorder via his Michael J. Fox Foundation.

In honour of his incredible work, the actor received the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award, which is given to those “whose humanitarian efforts have brought credit to the industry”.

The ceremony took place on Saturday (19th November) at Fairmont Century Plaza in Los Angeles and the actor attended with his wife Tracy Pollan and their four children. The actor’s Back To The Future co-star Christopher Lloyd was also present.

Woody Harrelson presented Fox with the award, who got a standing ovation from the audience. Upon receiving the honour, the actor joked: “You guys are making me shake, stop it.”

Fox then gave a 13-minute-long speech where he looked back on his career from moving to the US, getting his first acting break on Family Ties and shooting to fame after appearing in the Back To The Future trilogy.

Woody Harrelson presenting Michael J. Fox with his honorary Oscar

Credit: Getty

In the speech, he said: “Somewhere in there, around 29, I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s and I was told I only had 10 years left to work. That was s**tty”.

Speaking about the reaction his friends and fans had following his diagnosis, the actor added: “The outpouring of support from the public at large, the beautiful reaction from all of my peers in the entertainment business, all of you, thank you, and the people that I worked with, was transformative.”

Elsewhere he said: “The hardest part was grappling with the certainty of the diagnosis and the uncertainty of the situation.”

The actor finished by thanking his wife, Tracy, for sticking by him and, looking at his trophy, joked: “I cannot walk and carry this thing, but I ask Tracy to once again carry the weight.”

Last month, Fox revealed he had plans to pitch a Back to the Future remake where the role of Marty would be played by a girl. This also comes after fellow actor Christopher Lloyd got Back to the Future fans questioning whether there could be a reboot on the horizon after a series of cryptic social media posts.