Michael J. Fox was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award Tuesday at the Museum of the Moving Image’s Spring Moving Image Awards, where Martin Scorsese spoke about the personal impact Fox’s Parkinson’s advocacy has had on his own life.
Reflecting on the actor’s career and saying he was “stunned by the energy and power of his presence” when he hit the scene in the ’80s, Scorsese commented at the New York event that “Michael was a powerhouse it was made for movies.
“Now when you look at Michael’s filmography, take note of the amount of work he’s put in since his Parkinson’s diagnosis,” the director continued, noting collaborations with Tim Burton, Woody Allen and Peter Jackson. “And along the way, not only did Michael create his foundation, which has raised so much money for research and raised just as much awareness, but he also became a real guide to so many others with Parkinson’s — including my wife, Helen (Morris). Michael, your support has meant the world to her and to me.
Scorsese has been married to Morris — a former book editor and TV producer — since 1999, and the two share daughter Francesca.
Fox took the stage to accept his honor and joked, “I’m turning into a pumpkin in about five minutes, so I’m trying to beat that,” recalling the first meeting with Davis Guggenheim, the director of his new documentary. Still: A Michael J Fox movie. Guggenheim had read Fox’s books and told him, “I want what you have.” “I have Parkinson’s,” Fox joked as he recalled the two talking about art, acting and family.
“A few people had asked me before to tell my life story and they cried before they got to me,” Fox continued, “but Davis got it. This is my life and I have so many great things in my life,” citing his wife Tracy Pollan and family. “I don’t have a tearful, sad life. Something really crappy happened, but it allowed me to do other things that were effective and maybe made things better.
Former employees Richard Kind, Alan Ruck and Connie Britton also shared video messages in support of Fox, and the evening was also celebrated How with John Wilson star John Wilson for ‘Innovative Series’.