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What The Cast Of Family Ties Is Doing Today

Family Ties aired for seven seasons from 1982 to 1989. Every week, viewers were invited into the Columbus, Ohio home of Steven and Elyse Keaton and their four kids. The parents are baby boomers and former hippies who recall the freewheeling lifestyle of the '60s and '70s fondly and often. They use their life lessons and liberal views to help shape their kids' lives. However, said children's beliefs don't always jibe with those of their folks. Alex, the oldest Keaton kid, is a very conservative young man driven by money and success. His younger sister Mallory is deeply materialistic. 

The show won several awards for its funny and thoughtful look at the ups and downs of family life. Michael J. Fox took home three consecutive Emmy Awards for his comedic work as Alex. Additionally, plenty of now-famous folks appeared on Family Ties during its run, including Tom Hanks, Crispin Glover, Courteney Cox, Wil Wheaton, and Corey Feldman. Let's check out what these cast members have been up to since the show turned off its lights.

Michael J. Fox

Michael J. Fox was a substantial part of 1980s entertainment culture. The Canadian-born actor started appearing on TV shows in the late 1970s, eventually landing a role on the Depression-era family drama Palmerstown, U.S.A. in the 1980s. However, a couple of years later, when Family Ties started its seven-season run, Fox became a household name. As Alex P. Keaton, the family's oldest child, Fox embodied the money-driven Reagan-era spirit. He spouted his conservative values with passion and didn't bend to his parents' liberal beliefs.

While the show was still airing, Fox starred in several popular movies, including Back to the Future, Teen Wolf, and Light of Day, further cementing him as a showbiz staple. Family Ties worked out well for him in numerous ways –- especially since he met his wife, Tracy Pollan, when she played his girlfriend on the series.

In the early '90s, Fox was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease. He's been open about the depression and addiction issues his illness has caused. Still, he has continued to work. Fox has had runs on TV shows like Spin City, Boston Legal, The Good Wife, and Rescue Me, to name a few. He's also appeared in a few movies, including Mars Attacks! and The American President. His acting career has slowed down as he's dedicated more attention to Parkinson's advocacy, however: Fox actually founded his own foundation for Parkinson's research.

Michael Gross

Michael Gross played Steven, the Keaton family patriarch. He's an exemplary father — definitely one of the all-time great sitcom dads. He's funny and goofy, making a whole lot of classic dad jokes. But Steven, who works at the local PBS station, has a lot of genuine wisdom to share. He's there to listen to what his kids are going through, is always down to offer advice, and is capable of being stern when it's needed.

Gross' career didn't end with Family Ties. The year the show ended, Gross appeared as Burt Gummer in Tremors. He went on to reprise that role six more times in the other movies in that franchise, the last of which was released in 2020. Last Man Standing, Suits, and Grace and Frankie are some of the many other shows he's done. An avid railroad enthusiast, Gross is also the celebrity spokesman for the B&O Railroad Museum in Baltimore, Maryland.

Meredith Baxter

Before she was a Keaton, Meredith Baxter was a Lawrence. From 1976 to 1980, she played the eldest daughter of the Lawrence clan on Family. The dramatic series has its fun moments, but focuses most often on challenges families face. On Family Ties, Baxter played Elyse Keaton, an architect, wife, and mother. A former hippie activist like Steven, Elyse has held onto her liberal views and her focus on humanitarian concerns.

Like Michael Gross, Baxter has worked steadily since the Keaton family hit the pause button. Her career has mostly focused on television, including a role as Maureen on the classic soap opera The Young and the Restless. She also gave a solid performance as Betty Broderick in the TV movie A Woman Scorned: The Betty Broderick Story, which is based on the true story of a woman who shot her ex-husband and his new wife. More recently, Baxter has expanded into science fiction by playing a doctor in Genesis: The Future of Mankind Is Woman.

Justine Bateman

As Mallory Keaton, the second-eldest Keaton kid, Justine Bateman embodied teenage girl mall culture of the 1980s: big hair, big fashion, and a big obsession with shopping. Mallory is more focused on boys and friends than school and success like her brother. Bateman brought a blend of superb comic timing and earnest heart to the character, creating a fun foil to her older brother's seriousness. The two spar regularly, but the family always maintains a cohesive and loving vibe.

Bateman's real-life brother is actor Jason Bateman, who played bad boy Derek Taylor on the sitcom Silver Spoons while Family Ties was running. The siblings don't work together much, but in 2006, Justine did appear as Nellie Bluth on an episode of Bateman's show Arrested Development. The actress has been working steadily since Family Ties, acting in shows like Easy to Assemble and Desperate Housewives. She's also directed films, her most prominent work being Violet, which stars Olivia Munn and Justin Theroux. Bateman also wrote a 2018 book called Fame: The Hijacking of Reality, about growing up in the spotlight. 

Tina Yothers

Jennifer Keaton (played by Tina Yothers) is the Keaton family's third kid. Liberal like her parents, Jennifer is a tomboy who doesn't share Mallory's interest in heels and hairdos. She goes through many awkward moments as a young teenager: In one memorable episode, she tries to fit in with the cool clique at school, changing her whole appearance and attitude to look and sound like a 1980s valley girl. She alienates her true friends and family, of course, and learns a valuable lesson about the importance of not changing to please people who suck. While she was still on the show, she wrote a book for tweens called Being Your Best: Tina Yothers' Guide for Girls.

Yothers didn't focus on acting after Family Ties ended in '89. She appeared on a handful of TV shows and in a few movies, but by 1996, she was largely out of the game. After that, she made appearances as herself on reality TV programs, including The Weakest Link and Celebrity Fit Club. Post-show, she started a band called Jaded with her brother. She currently lives in California with her husband and kids.

Brian Bonsall

Brian Bonsall played Andy, the youngest of the Keaton children, who is born during the show's third season –- an event that was actually in sync with Meredith Baxter's real-life pregnancy and delivery. Andy is a baby through the fourth season, with Bonsall jumping into the role in season five. The show's writers bumped his character's age up by a few years to cover this transition, so that Andy could be walking, talking, and completely interactive with the other actors. The littlest Keaton is a sweet-natured kid whom Alex hopes to shape into a budding conservative like himself.

Bonsall regularly worked through 1994, appearing on television shows like Parker Lewis Can't Lose and Star Trek: The Next Generation. He later traded acting for music, playing guitar and singing in bands Lowjob and Bootjack & Bonz. In 2018, Bonsall appeared in a short comedy movie entitled Slaughsages about a town terrorized by demonic wieners.

Marc Price

Marc Price played the Keaton's lovably nerdy neighbor, Irwin Handelman, who goes by the nickname Skippy. Some of the series' Skippy-centric episodes center around him finding out he's adopted and turning to his neighbors for advice. He also helps the Keaton kids run a bed-and-breakfast out of their house while their parents are out of town.

Price is another Family Ties cast member who hasn't amassed many acting credits since the show finished. Following the final episode, he was in a couple of TV programs like Hearts Are Wild, but that part of his career came to a halt in 1993. Price resurfaced for some acting gigs after 2013, but generally speaking, it's rare that he appears on camera any longer. 

That doesn't mean he's not performing, however. Price inherited the funny gene and a desire to make people laugh from his stand-up comedian father, Al Bernie. Price appeared on The Last Comic Standing and spent several years performing in Las Vegas. He does a lot of work these days behind the scenes, writing and producing shows for networks like Disney Channel, the Food Network, and TBS.

Tracy Pollan

Tracy Pollan started acting in 1982, a few years before she stepped into the role of Ellen Reed on Family Ties. When Alex goes to college, he is eager to meet the perfect partner. As such, he dives into the student directory and finds Tricia, a woman who, on paper, seems to fit his strict requirements for a significant other. Ellen Reed, Alex's polar opposite, is Tricia's roommate. Even though they're completely and totally different, Alex eventually realizes he's in love with Ellen. Things worked out for Ellen and Alex's actors in real life too: In 1988, Pollan became Michael J. Fox's wife. The two have raised four kids together.

Pollan has continued to act occasionally since she left Family Ties in 1987. She's been on TV shows like Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, Medium, and Spin City. In 2014, Pollan co-authored a cookbook, The Pollan Family Table, with a number of her family members.

Scott Valentine

The Keatons are known for being a remarkably open-minded and kind bunch. In season four, when Mallory brings artist Nick Moore (Scott Valentine) home to meet her good-hearted kin, however, she seriously tests their generosity. Nick is more than a little rough around the edges, looking and sounding quite a lot like the title character played by Sylvester Stallone in the Rocky franchise. Ultimately, however, the family discovers Nick's hidden good nature. Granted, it takes a few emotional episodes to get to that sweet spot, but in time, he comes to be a beloved part of the Keaton family.

Valentine's acting career since Family Ties has predominately happened in the world of TV. He's been on a tremendously varied number of shows, including Phantom 2040, JAGBlack Scorpion, and Murder, She Wrote. Valentine doesn't confine himself to the world of acting, though: He's also a partner in an investment firm that focuses on projects involving renewable energy.