‘No Money, No Connections’: Michael J. Fox Describes ‘Dumpster Diving For Food’ At 18 Before Skyrocketing To Fame

‘No Money, No Connections’: Michael J. Fox Describes ‘Dumpster Diving For Food’ At 18 Before Skyrocketing To Fame


Michael J. Fox recalled dumpster diving for food and struggling to make ends meet before he reached the heights of fame and fortune as an actor.

The famous actor wasn’t always as wealthy as he is today and reminded fans of humble upbringing during a recent interview with Variety.  Fox described himself as a young Canadian child with parents who lived paycheck-to-paycheck. He always had a feeling he would make it, but he had to endure many challenges before his career took flight.

“I was living on the margins. I was 18 years old, with no money, no connections, literally dumpster diving for food,” he revealed to Variety.


Fox said his dumpster-diving days came shortly after he dropped out of high school and moved to Los Angeles to pursue his dream of becoming an actor.

“I knew I was more talented than a lot of people,” Fox said.

“And I knew that if I wanted to be someone, I couldn’t just sit on my parents’ porch and think, ‘Boy, if I was only born in the States and my parents had money and weren’t living paycheck to paycheck, I could do something with my life,’” he said.

Fox recalled barely having enough to scrape by, yet he maintained his belief that with a little bit of tenacity, he could make it in Hollywood.

He admitted to having a few failed auditions, including a difficult read in front of Robert Redford for a role in “Ordinary People.”

“I was sitting around with all these actors, and I remember thinking, ‘Why is this going to work for me and not for them?’” Fox said.

“It’s not that I wished them unhappiness or bad luck — I wished them all the success in the world. But I knew I was going to make it. God knows why,” he told Variety.

Fox landed the role of Alex P. Keaton in NBC’s “Family Ties” roughly 2 years later, and was immediately catapulted to fame as the show’s breakout star.

Fox has continued his acting career in spite of suffering from the debilitating symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease.


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