Michael J. Fox is finally getting an Oscar.
The beloved actor and Parkinson’s disease activist will receive the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ 13th Governors Awards on November 19, 2022. Diane Warren, Peter Weir, and Euzhan Palcy will also receive honorary Oscars on that date, per The Hollywood Reporter.
In a statement, outgoing Academy president David Rubin had this to say about the four honorees:
“The Academy’s board of governors is honored to recognize four individuals who have made indelible contributions to cinema and the world at large. Michael J. Fox’s tireless advocacy of research on Parkinson’s disease alongside his boundless optimism exemplifies the impact of one person in changing the future for millions. Euzhan Palcy is a pioneering filmmaker whose groundbreaking significance in international cinema is cemented in film history. Diane Warren’s music and lyrics have magnified the emotional impact of countless motion pictures and inspired generations of musical artists. And Peter Weir is a director of consummate skill and artistry whose work reminds us of the power of film to reveal the full range of human experience.”
The Hersholt Award is awarded on occasion “to an individual in the motion picture arts and sciences whose humanitarian efforts have brought credit to the industry.” The award had been presented 42 times in the past. Previous recipients include Gregory Peck, Frank Sinatra, Oprah Winfrey, Jeffrey Katzenberg, and Angelina Jolie.
Fox, who turned 61 earlier this month, is best known for his acting work in the 1980s and 1990s, starring in the TV series Family Ties and Spin City as well as the Back to the Future films. He was diagnosed with young-onset Parkinson’s disease in 1991 and launched the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research in 2000, which is now the leading Parkinson’s organization in the world.
Fox is also the subject of an upcoming documentary from director Davis Guggenheim. The film will “recount Fox’s extraordinary story in his own words — the improbable tale of an undersized kid from a Canadian army base who rose to the heights of stardom in 1980s Hollywood. […] Intimate and honest, and produced with unprecedented access to Fox and his family, the film will chronicle Fox’s personal and professional triumphs and travails, and will explore what happens when an incurable optimist confronts an incurable disease. With a mix of adventure and romance, comedy and drama, watching the film will feel like… well, like a Michael J. Fox movie.” The documentary is currently now in production for Apple Original Films. A release date has not been announced at this time.
Are you happy to see Michael J. Fox finally receive an Oscar after all these years?