Michael J. Fox Says This Is the Secret to His 32-Year Marriage
Fox and wife Tracy Pollan tied the knot back in 1988 after meeting on Family Ties.
Marriage can be hard work, and sometimes all that effort can lead to shorter marriages than expected. But then there are plenty of couples who have been happily married for decades with no signs of strife. What are they doing differently? Well, actor Michael J. Fox just revealed the secret to his long-lasting marriage: He and his wife, Tracy Pollan, laugh every day "for a good two minutes." Keep reading for more about Fox's 32-year marriage, and if you're looking for your own long-lasting partnership, You Shouldn't Date Anyone This Much Younger Than You, Research Shows.
"Every day we have something we laugh about for a good two minutes," the 59-year-old actor told People about his marriage.
Fox and Pollan got married 32 years ago in 1988. The couple have had four children together—son Sam, who is 31 years old; twin daughters Aquinnah and Schuyler, who are 25; and a daughter, Esmé, who is 19.
The pair met in the summer of 1985, when Pollan auditioned for Family Ties—a show Fox starred on. Pollan was only a recurring presence on the show for one season and dating actor Kevin Bacon at the time, but she and Fox reunited when filming the movie Bright Lights, Big City in 1987. It was then that Fox asked Pollan out to lunch—after finding out she was no longer with Bacon—and the two started dating before getting married the very next year.
Fox also revealed that Pollan and his family have helped him through his health struggles over the past years, including being diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in 1991.
"The kind of support she gives me, I feel like a husband, a father, and a friend first, and then somewhere way down the line, I'm someone with Parkinson's," he said.
Fox also underwent surgery in 2018 for a noncancerous tumor on his spine. After a successful operation, he had to go through a four-month process of learning how to walk again. And though he calls the recovery period some of his "darkest times," the actor said he is happy to be able to now focus on his family.
"My life now is quiet, and I'm actually having a really good time," Fox said. "People don't believe me, but I love life. I love being with my family. I love being with Tracy. I love that I don't do a lot of useless stuff that I used to do, because I don't have the energy or the time."
And while it may seem like most Hollywood romances are fleeting, Fox and Pollan aren't the only long-lasting celebrity couple. For more famous duos who have been married for years, read on, and for a relationship that sadly didn't stand the test of time, Lady Gaga Opens Up About Former Fiancé: "I Loved Him So Much."
Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson
Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson also tied the knot in 1988. The two actors met in 1981 while on the set of the TV series Bosom Buddies, according to Harper's Bazaar. But get this: Hanks was smitten with Wilson even before this, after seeing her guest star on an episode of The Brady Bunch when they were both teenagers.
"I was actually at a friend of mine's house when it aired and I remember thinking 'that girl's cute,'" he told People in 2016. And for more marriage tips, find out why Couples Who Do This One Thing Are 40 Percent Less Likely to Divorce.
Samuel L. Jackson and LaTanya Richardson
Unlike many celebrity couples, Samuel L. Jackson and LaTanya Richardson didn't actually meet on set—they met while in college! After first hitting it off while Jackson was attending Morehouse University and Richardson was at Spelman College, the couple married in 1980 and have been going strong ever since.
"We used to say the most revolutionary thing was to keep a Black family together. So that became our mantra," Richardson told Essence in 2018. And for more inspiring marriage stories, check out The 50 Best Marriage Tips From Couples Who've Been Married for 50 Years.
Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen
Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen met while filming the movie Pontiac Moon in 1993 and married two years later in 1995. But according to Danson on Off Camera, he fell head-over-heels for Steenburgen during a dinner before shooting even began.
"That dinner, I was just, 'Oh my god, look at her,'" he said. "She had this 1,000-watt bulb going off behind her eyes. She was so light and so interesting." And for more celebrity content delivered straight to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.
Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick
It's seems like Bacon wasn't too upset about his breakup with Pollan, since he also got married in 1988—to actor Kyra Sedgwick. The two met while filming the movie Lemon Sky. Bacon spoke about their relationship to People in July 2020, saying that his wife's "partnership is invaluable. I found someone I was meant to be with." And for celebrities who are no longer together, revisit these Celebrity Couples From the 2000s You Totally Forgot About.