Michael Andrew Fox, known as Michael J. Fox, [[UsefulNotes/KnightFever OC]], (born June 9, 1961) is a [[UsefulNotes/{{Canada}} Canadian]]-[[UsefulNotes/TheUnitedStates American]] actor, author, [[CelebrityVoiceActor voice over artist]], and [[TheWoobie woobie]] with a face that seems born to make us laugh.

He started off as a TeenIdol in TheEighties, making a dual hit on both film and television as Marty [=McFly=] from the ''Franchise/BackToTheFuture'' trilogy (1985-1990) and Alex P. Keaton from ''Series/FamilyTies'' (1982-1989), for which he won three Emmy Awards and a Golden Globe Award. A rather popular but generally less famous role was the main character in ''Film/TeenWolf''. He also did [[TomHanksSyndrome some serious stuff]] that almost no one remembers, and he's acknowledged that he isn't an actor who can "blend" into a wide variety of roles.

In TheNineties, he played Mike Flaherty on ''Series/SpinCity'' (1996-2000), for which he won an Emmy, three Golden Globes, and two Screen Actors Guild Awards. He was also Creator/JonStewart's first guest as host of ''Series/TheDailyShow'' in 1999.

Fox was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in 1991, and disclosed his condition to the public in 1998. Fox semi-retired from acting in 2000 as the symptoms of his disease worsened. He has since become an advocate for research towards finding a cure.

Despite his "retirement" he has guest starred on various television shows and also some voice acting work, most notably ''Film/StuartLittle'' and ''Disney/AtlantisTheLostEmpire'', where his distinctive boyish voice adds to the generally benign nature of his characters. Some of his guest spots have him [[DisabledCharacterDisabledActor pigeon-holed as a man with an illness]], when he guested on ''Series/BostonLegal'' he had lung cancer, when he guested on ''Series/{{Scrubs}}'' he had OCD and when he guested on ''Series/TheGoodWife'' he had a neurological disorder.

He also appeared as himself in his prime-time special ''Michael J. Fox: Adventures of an Incurable Optimist (A Personal Journey of Hope)'' in May 2009. He made a surprise appearance at the closing ceremonies of the 2010 Winter Olympics, where he declared [[CrowningMomentOfHeartwarming everyone attending to be honorary Canadians]] - [[CrowningMomentOfFunny which he then claims means that]] [[FridgeBrilliance Canada won every gold medal of the games]]! On May 4, 2010, he (for lack of a better word) trolled Creator/StephenColbert on [[Series/TheColbertReport his own show]]. In 2011, he also trolled Creator/LarryDavid on [[Series/CurbYourEnthusiasm his show]].

He made his return to TV with the sitcom ''Series/TheMichaelJFoxShow'', which ran from October 2013 to January 2014.
* ''Film/MidnightMadness'' (1980) - Scott
* ''Series/FamilyTies'' (1982-89) - Alex P. Keaton
* ''Franchise/BackToTheFuture'' Trilogy
** ''Film/BackToTheFuture'' (1985) - Marty [=McFly=]
** ''Film/BackToTheFuturePartII'' (1989) - Marty [=McFly=], Marty [=McFly=] Jr., Marlene [=McFly=]
** ''Film/BackToTheFuturePartIII'' (1990) - Marty [=McFly=], Seamus [=McFly=]
* ''Film/TeenWolf'' (1985) - Scott Howard
* ''Film/TheSecretOfMySuccess'' (1987) - Brantley Foster/Carlton Whitfield
* ''Film/BrightLightsBigCity'' (1988) - Jamie Conway
* ''Film/CasualtiesOfWar'' (1989) - PFC. Max Eriksson
* ''Film/DocHollywood'' (1991) - Dr. Benjamin "Ben" Stone
* ''Film/TheHardWay'' (1991) - Nick Lang
* ''Film/{{For Love or Money|1993}}'' (1993) - Doug Ireland
* ''Film/HomewardBoundTheIncredibleJourney'' (and sequels) (1993) - Chance (voice)
* ''Film/{{Greedy}}'' (1994) - Daniel "Danny" McTeague
* ''Film/TheAmericanPresident'' (1995) - Lewis Rothschild
* ''Film/TheFrighteners'' (1996) - Frank Bannister
* ''Film/MarsAttacks'' (1996) - Jason Stone
* ''Series/SpinCity'' (TV series) (1996-2000) - Michael "Mike" Flaherty
* ''Film/StuartLittle'' (and sequels) (1999) - Stuart Little (voice)
* ''Disney/AtlantisTheLostEmpire'' (and sequels) (2001) - Milo Thatch (voice)
* ''Series/TheMichaelJFoxShow'' (2013-14) - Mike Henry
* ''Series/DesignatedSurvivor'' (2018) - Ethan West

!!Tropes Associated with Michael J. Fox

* AndIMustScream: Fox describes this as what would happen if he was in a position where he couldn't take his pills.
* ArtifactAlias: he added the imaginary middle initial J because there was already a Michael Fox in the union. (His real middle name is Andrew.) When Michael Fox died, SAG offered Michael J. the opportunity to change his professional name back to his real name, but by then he and the public were used to it.
* BreakoutCharacter: Alex P. Keaton was meant to contrast his parents, but effectively became the star of the show.
* CelebrityParadox: Appearing in character as Marty [=McFly=] on ''Series/JimmyKimmelLive'', he was asked to stick around at the conclusion of the bit because Michael J. Fox would be the first guest on the show that night. His reply: "Oh, the guy from ''Teen Wolf''!"
* DawsonCasting: He was 23 playing 17 year old Marty [=McFly=], and due to his short stature and youthful face has almost never played a character the same age. In ''Series/SpinCity'' Michael Flaherty was established as just turning 30 just as Fox was approaching 40.
* {{Determinator}}: He did the first ''Film/BackToTheFuture'' film while simultaneously working full-time on ''Series/FamilyTies'', effectively carrying the show himself, since his ''Family Ties'' costar Meredith Baxter-Birney was out because she was pregnant, getting at most a few hours of sleep on most days. And then there's his battle with Parkinson's disease, originally told he'd have less than 10 years before the disease would overtake him, but 25 years later, he's still working.
* FakeAmerican: Many people are very surprised to learn he is Canadian born (though he holds dual US citizenship).
* FatalMethodActing: Almost fell victim to this in ''Back to the Future: Part III''. While shooting the hanging scene, his hand slipped and he got hanged for real, until a crewmember noticed he wasn't breathing and resuscitated him.
* {{Keet}}: He's always been quite energetic and he confessed that in more recent productions his energy is to hide the signs of Parkinson's.
* MilitaryBrat: In RealLife; he's the son of a Canadian Forces member who moved around Canada until he was 10, when his father retired and settled the family in the UsefulNotes/{{Vancouver}} area.
* OlderThanHeLooks: For many years, due to his short stature and youthful face. However, the effects of his condition have been pushing him up recently. Even still, he doesn't look like he is fifty.
* OldShame:
** He really hated working on ''Film/TeenWolf'' and refused to come back for the sequel.
** He regrets dropping out of high school in order to pursue his career as an actor as "a stupid youthful mistake", that he has since mandated that his children should at least finish high school and maybe one year of college themselves.
** On a recent appearance on [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nstFFtq_uE4 The Howard Stern Show]], Fox admits he doesn't like most of the films he made after his Parkinson's diagnosis, because during that time his thinking was, [[MoneyDearBoy "I'd better do as many movies as I can before I can no longer act"]], and started accepting roles for movies that, in the end, weren't very good.
* OneSteveLimit: There was already a Michael Fox in the Screen Actor's Guild when Michael J. Fox was just starting out, so he used the middle initial "J" in homage to actor Michael J. Pollard. For the record, his middle name is actually Andrew, but he wanted to avoid headlines like "Michael, A Fox!" or [[CanadaEh "Michael 'Eh?' Fox"]]. Now he's taken over as videos of the other Michael Fox are impossible to find. [[note]]Fox stated in interviews that the J stands for "Jenius". [[/note]]
* TeensAreShort: He's around 5'4", which allowed him to play teenage characters into his late twenties. Brandon Tartikoff, president of Creator/{{NBC}} Entertainment, the network that aired ''Series/FamilyTies'', actually thought he was too short to be the son of 6'4" Michael Gross.