His paternal grandparents (Jacob Danielovitch and Bryna) immigrated from Russia to America in 1912.
Has worked with three actors who share roles with his father. Kirk Douglas played Doc Holliday in Gunfight at the O.K. Corral (1957). Val Kilmer played the part in Tombstone (1993) and then appeared with Michael in The Ghost and the Darkness (1996). Dennis Quaid also played Holliday in Wyatt Earp (1994) and appeared with Michael in Traffic (2000). Kirk played Ulysses (Odysseus) in Ulisse (1954), based on The Odyssey. Michael appeared in Don't Say a Word (2001) with Sean Bean, who played Odysseus in Troy (2004).
Graduated with a B.A. from U.C. Santa Barbara (1968) as did singer Jack Johnson and actor Ossie Beck.
Turned down the role of Oliver in Love Story (1970) despite being offered 10% of the gross.
Wrote the obituary tribute for friend and "The Streets of San Francisco" (1972) co-star Karl Malden in Time magazine's "Milestones" section (July 20, 2009).
In 1975, quit the show "The Streets of San Francisco" (1972) to produce the film One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975).
Has two sons: Cameron Morrell (b. 13 December 1978), with Diandra Luker, and Dylan Michael (b. 8 August 2000), with Catherine Zeta-Jones.
He and The China Syndrome (1979) co-stars Jane Fonda and Jack Lemmon have all won Oscars for leading roles. Douglas won for Wall Street (1987), Fonda for Klute (1971), and Lemmon for Save the Tiger (1973).
In 1980, he was involved in a serious skiing accident, which sidelined his acting career for three years.
He has been active in handgun control since John Lennon's murder in December 1980.
Was named to Quigley Publications' Top 10 Poll of Money-Making Stars six times between 1985 and 1995, hitting a high of #2 in 1987. Surprising, despite a career that has spanned seven decades, his father, Kirk Douglas, never made the list, the annual poll of movie exhibitors that ranks the top stars in terms of box-office drawing power.
His performance as Gordon Gekko in Wall Street (1987) is ranked #25 on Premiere Magazine's 100 Greatest Movie Characters of All Time.
Five days after completing Black Rain (1989), he started filming The War of the Roses (1989).
In September 1992, he underwent treatment for alcohol and substance abuse at Sierra Tucson Center.
Announced on "Late Show with David Letterman" (1993) that he had Stage IV throat cancer and that he has started radiation and chemotherapy. [August 31, 2010]
Ranked #74 in Empire (UK) magazine's "The Top 100 Movie Stars of All Time" list. [October 1997]
Named a United Nations Messenger of Peace. His mission: to focus worldwide attention on nuclear disarmament and human rights. 
His second son and first child with Catherine Zeta-Jones, a boy named Dylan Michael, was born on 8th August about 6 p.m. at Cedars-Sinai Medical Centre near Beverly Hills. The baby weighed in at 7 pounds and seven ounces and measured 21-1/2 inches. He met Catherine at the Deauville Film Festival in France in August 1998; they began dating in March 1999 and got engaged on New Year's Eve 1999.
Initially turned down the role of Judge Wakefield in Traffic (2000). He later accepted only after the script underwent extensive re-writes.
As of 2002, he and Sir Laurence Olivier are the only two people in history to win Oscars for both Best Picture and Best Actor (although Olivier won them simultaneously for the same film).
Daughter Carys Zeta Douglas with Catherine Zeta-Jones; Carys was born the 20th April of 2003, at Valley Hospital in Ridgewood, New Jersey.
Thursday, December 11, 2003, he was host, together with wife Catherine Zeta-Jones, at the 2003 Annual Nobel Peace Prize Concert in Olso Spectrum in Oslo, Norway.
He endorsed Rep.Richard Gephardt (D-MO) in the 2004 Democratic primaries.
September 2007 - has residences in both New York City and Bermuda.
Recovering from knee replacement surgery [April 29, 2009].
The Sunday Times estimated his and wife Catherine Zeta-Jones' net worth at $278 million. 
Has a tumor in his throat and will undergo weeks of radiation and chemotherapy, but expected to make a full recovery [August 16, 2010].
He was nominated for the 2011 New Jersey Hall of Fame for his contributions to the Arts and Entertainment.
He was inducted into the 2012 New Jersey Hall of Fame for his contributions to Arts and Entertainment.
Will receive the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center's 12th annual Monte Crisco award in April, 2012 [December 14, 2011].