Michael J. Fox praised; Cher presents Diane Warren with her first Oscar

LOS ANGELES — Michael J. Fox was praised for his work seeking a Parkinson’s disease cure and Cher presented songwriter Diane Warren with a long overdue Oscar at the Governors Awards Saturday night.

Directors Peter Weir and Euzhan Palcy were also given honorary Oscars at the awards ceremony presented by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Awards contenders including Jennifer Lawrence, Florence Pugh, Angela Bassett, Eddie Redmayne, Michelle Williams, Cate Blanchett, Brendan Fraser, Tom Hanks, Glen Powell and Janelle Monáe attended the black-tie event seen as the official start of Hollywood’s movie awards season.

Fox, 61, who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease at age 29 in 1991, used Bruce Springsteen’s song “No Surrender” to describe his battle to find a cure for the degenerative disorder of the brain.

“That is sort of a personal anthem of mine,” said Fox, quoting the song’s words from the podium: “No retreat, no surrender.”

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Presenting the award, longtime friend Woody Harrelson said Fox “turned a chilling diagnosis into a courageous mission” by founding the Michael J. Fox Foundation to seek a cure. The foundation has raised more than $1 billion for research.

“He never asked for the role of Parkinson’s advocate, but it is his best performance,” said Harrelson. “Michael J. Fox sets the ultimate example of how to fight and how to live.”

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