Michael J Fox’s autobiographical documentary film Still has been released today. The movie is full of the actor’s incredible revelations from the highest of Hollywood stardom highs to the deepest lows of his struggles with Parkinson’s and alcoholism.
The 1980s heartthrob famously replaced a fired Eric Stoltz on Back to the Future as Marty McFly, which he had to shoot at night after a full day’s filming on his sitcom Family Ties.
After the time travel comedy became a gigantic hit in the summer of 1985, suddenly Fox was the biggest star in Tinseltown, something he admits went straight to his head.
In Still the 61-year-old confessed: “On the set of Family Ties, I was welcomed back like the prodigal son. I was the star after all. I would never have dreamed of lording it over anyone and fact is I could get away with the most outrageous behaviour. I was the boy prince of Hollywood. I was big, I was bigger than bubblegum. You think it’s made out of brick and rock, but it’s not. It’s made out of paper and feathers. It’s an illusion.”
When his future wife Tracy Pollan was cast opposite him on Family Ties, he admitted he pushed her to the limit with an offensive remark during one arrogant moment. Fox said he remembered he could smell garlic on her breath and cheekily said: “Woah, little scampi for lunch babe?” After a short silence, the actress looked him dead in the eyes and said very slowly: “That was mean and rude and you’re a complete and total f***ing a**hole.”
The Back to the Future star, who confessed “I was a bit of a d***”, shared: “Nobody talked to me the way. This woman was completely unintimidated by whoever I thought I was. A pig is a pig no matter how many hit movies he’s had…at that moment I fell in love with her.”
After being diagnosed with Parkinson’s at 29, Fox kept it a secret for a while and self-medicated with alcohol as he found his latest films were getting bad reviews. The Back to the Future star said how he started having margaritas before the last take on sets and would stash away bottles of wine from his wife.
The actor, who would also spend hours in the bath as a “refuge” said: “I drank to disassociate, to escape my situation… I was sullen and angry… I was definitely an alcoholic. But I’ve gone 30 years without having a drink. The core of that behaviour is fear.”
Still: A Michael J Fox Movie is out now on Apple TV+ and playing in select cinemas.