LGBTQ+ ally Michael J Fox moves the crowd to tears with his surprise BAFTAs appearance

Michael J Fox and his wife Tracey Pollan at the BAFTAS

Michael J Fox, the actor best known for his starring role in the cult classic Back To The Future, made a surprise appearance at the BAFTAs over the weekend to present the ‘Best Film’ award.

Fox, who has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, appeared onstage at the event in his wheelchair, but insisted on standing up at the podium, and received a standing ovation from the audience at the Royal Festival Hall in London.

The actor handed out the ‘Best Film’ award for Christopher Nolan’s Oppenheimer.

BAFTA host David Tennant described him as a “true legend of cinema” when Fox was introduced.

While on stage, Fox said: “Five films were nominated in this category tonight and all five have something in common. They are the best of what we do. There’s a reason why they say movies are magic because movies can change your day. It can change your outlook. Sometimes it can change your life.”

Social media users said they were “in tears” when they saw Fox at the BAFTAS, with one person saying that he is “a legend”.

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Another said that he is an “absolute hero” and a “wonderful human”.

Fox was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in the 1990s and rarely makes public appearances. He has been a longstanding supporter of people with Parkinson’s.

His foundation, called The Michael J Fox Foundation (MJFF), is dedicated to funding and finding a care for Parkinson’s disease as well as developing improved therapies for people with Parkinson’s in the meantime.

Fox and his foundation have also been a longstanding ally of the LGBTQ+ community. The MJFF states that Parkinson’s doesn’t discriminate by race, gender, age, or sexual orientation, and that the Michael J Fox Foundation “honours” the LGBTQ+ community.

The World Health Organisation estimates that over 8 million people worldwide has Parkinson’s Disease currently, with one in 37 people alive today in the UK being likely to be diagnosed with Parkinson’s in their lifetime.

Parkinson’s UK describe it as “the fastest growing neurological condition in the world”.

The MJFF has raised $2 billion for research since its inception in 1991.

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