What Happened to Macaulay Culkin and Where He is Now?

What Happened to Macaulay Culkin and Where He is Now?
Image credit: HBO

Here's why the Home Alone star chose a life away from Hollywood.

Culkin got into entertainment at the tender age of four. He started by participating in a Broadway production and then made a splash on TV by appearing in a famous commercial.

He got really famous, however, in 1990 after landing the role of Kevin McCallister in Home Alone. Culkin was soon one of the most successful child actors of all time. He appeared in Michael Jackson's music video, Black or White, and starred in a string of movies such as My Girl, The Good Son, Richie Rich, Getting Even with Dad, and, of course, Home Alone 2: Lost in New York. Unfortunately, Culkin soon met the fate of numerous other child stars who learned all too early what fame and notoriety can do to a child.

In 1998, the actor suffered an emotional burnout and took a break from his career.

After retiring from film, Culkin became addicted to drugs and was arrested for possessing marijuana and controlled substances he had no prescription for. But Culkin said his drug addiction was never much of an issue: while he did use drugs recreationally, it never got so bad that he had to go to rehab or seek help.

Still, Macaulay did not want to leave Hollywood for good. 2003 saw him star in Party Monster in a bid to return to cinema. The film was panned by critics. A year later, Macaulay got praised for his role in Saved!, but his career was seemingly over and done with. His attempts at making a name for himself as an adult actor failed miserably: in 2005, he starred in Sex and Breakfast, a direct-to-DVD release that got abysmal reviews.

Relationship with Parents

Because Macaulay became a star as a child, he could not sign contracts or manage his own finances. He received $100,000 for his role in Home Alone, and his fee for Home Alone 2: Lost in New York was already $4.5 million. That's the largest paycheck ever received by a 12-year-old actor.

Macaulay says he now feels like his younger self worked really hard, and he now inherited all his money, enabling him to treat everything he does as a hobby.

His parents, Kit and Patricia, are said to have appropriated 15% of the money Macaulay made. As he grew up, he began to fight his parents to get his hard-earned cash. When he turned 16, he sued his parents to get rid of their custody and get access to his money. Today, Macaulay Culkin's net worth is estimated at $18 million.

Personal Life

The actor got married for the first time at 17 to actress Rachel Miner. Officially, the couple's marriage lasted four years, but they separated after two years of living together. Following the divorce, Macaulay met Mila Kunis. They were together for eight years. Mila said it was not easy to be with Macaulay: he was recognised everywhere, making their relationship a constant challenge. The two remained on friendly terms after breaking up.

In 2017, Macaulay Culkin met actress Brenda Song on the set of Seth Rogen's movie Changeland. They started seeing each other, and in 2021, Macaulay and Brenda had a son, Dakota, named after Macaulay's late sister, who was hit by a car and died in 2008.

Career Today

Macaulay Culkin continues to appear on television from time to time, primarily as himself or as his Home Alone character Kevin McCallister: in 2018, he appeared as Kevin in a Google Assistant commercial.

Macaulay now has his own podcast, The Bunny Ears, which he launched in 2017. It's part parody, part comedy, featuring interviews with celebrities. Macaulay always wears bunny ears while hosting the podcast, hence the name.

In 2021, Macaulay appeared on the TV series American Horror Story and tried his hand at modelling, walking on the catwalk for a Gucci show in Los Angeles.

For the most part, Macaulay Culkin has a good life and no reason to complain. It's a far cry from his childhood when he was practically living on movie sets, and everything he did had to be coordinated with his busy schedule. Nowadays, he has plenty of time to kick back and can afford to retire earlier than many of his colleagues.