Is former child actor Macaulay Culkin on the verge of a relapse? That’s what one tabloid is reporting this week. Gossip Cop looked into the report and came to a verdict.
The National Enquirer published an article this week with the splashy title, “NEW RELAPSE FEARS FOR WISECRACKING CULKIN!” The outlet claims the Home Alone star was sparking fears that he’d soon relapse. Culkin “raised eyebrows by dismissing his longtime battle with heroin and alcohol,” the outlet proclaims.
It quotes a joke Macaulay Culkin told in an Esquire interview from earlier this month, “I’ve been accused of having a drug problem, but nothing could be further from the truth. Drugs are the easiest thing I’ve ever done in my life.” This was proof, the magazine argued, that Culkin wasn’t taking his sobriety seriously enough.
Within that same interview, Culkin said that he no longer took drugs, though he did admit to taking “the occasional muscle relaxer” (it’s important to note that the actor mentioned nursing a problematic back) but still insisted, “no, I don’t do drugs recreationally. I still kinda drink like a fish. I drink and I smoke.” He continued, “I don’t touch the things, but I do love them. They’re like old friends. But sometimes you outgrow your friends.”
The publication consulted with “renowned” addiction expert, who the tabloid admits had never treated Culkin. “Without a doubt there is a possibility he will relapse. When you think you can handle your addiction — you’re in trouble,” they told the outlet. “Addicts are emotional cripples and what he’s really doing is screaming for help!”
Gossip Cop can debunk this rumor. It’s true that addicts have a high chance of relapse, but according to the American Addiction Centers, while there are warning signs to a relapse, joking about prior drug use is not one of them. This tabloid is just trying to exploit Culkin’s former struggles to sell their paper. Plus, Culkin’s rep denied the accusation that the actor was on the verge of relapse.
Thanks to his fame, tabloids sometimes target Culkin with their false rumors. In 2019, Life & Style claimed Culkin was begging his brother Kieran for help getting acting roles. “Macaulay was always the star of the family, but now he’s the one begging Kieran to put in a good word with the Hollywood honchos,” a supposed source told the outlet. The story couldn’t be further from the truth, Gossip Cop discovered.
In an interview with Ellen DeGeneres, Culkin admitted that his time as a child star afforded him the luxury of doing whatever he pleased. “I felt like some kid worked really, really hard and I inherited all his money,” he told DeGeneres. “It allows me to treat everything like a hobby, so I can just do all kinds of projects that I want to do, whether it’s writing or painting or a new website or whatever it is.” Far from sounding desperate for work, Culkin sounds at ease in his life.
D’Agostino, Ryan. “Macaulay Culkin Is Not Like You.” Esquire, 11 Feb. 2020.
Ackermann, Kristina. “Warning Signs of Relapse: Depression, Stress, and Other Triggers.” American Addiction Centers, 3 Feb. 2020.
Matis, Griffin. “Macaulay Culkin Begging His Brother Kieran For Help Getting Acting Roles?” Gossip Cop, 31 Oct. 2019.
Nilles, Billy. “Inside Kieran and Macaulay Culkin’s Uneasy Relationship With Fame.” E! News, 27 Aug. 2019.
Gossip Cop has determined this story is totally false.