Corey Haim and Corey Feldman may have been two of the biggest child and teen actors of the '80s and '90s, but they were both hiding dark secrets. The boys, often known as "the two Coreys," were taken advantage of from the very beginning of their careers.
The Coreys were surrounded by older men in the movie industry, many of whom violated them and introducing them to drugs. The boys had each other to lean on, but otherwise they were almost always in the presence of predatory men both on and off set. They entered the Hollywood party scene, hiding the pain they endured for years.
They had similar upbringings but very different fates – Feldman managed to recover from a dope addiction, but Haim's downward spiral led to his end at just 38 years old. The tale of the two Coreys may be one of childhood mistreatment, pain, and tragedy, but in the era of #MeToo, there may be hope that those guilty will be publicly brought to justice.
Both Haim and Feldman were surrounded by pedophiles from the beginning of their careers. When Haim first met Feldman, he shared that he was molested on the set of Lucas. Haim, a young boy, assumed that such behavior was normal, and he asked Feldman, "I guess we should play around like that, too?" Feldman knew Haim's story didn't reflect how children typically behave with one another and didn't engage with Haim's request.
The boys made connections with many adult men whom they admired as much-needed role models; however, a large number of those men had less-than-pure intentions for the young actors. Feldman remembers seeing a photo from his 15th birthday party, where five of the men who hurt the boys were featured in a group shot of the party-goers. "Slowly, over a period of years...I would begin to realize that many of the people I had surrounded myself with were monsters," Feldman said.
Feldman's father, who was his manager for a time, hired an assistant for Corey named Ron. Ron, then in his twenties, was significantly older than Corey, but the two became close friends. Feldman stated that they were extremely similar, and that it seemed almost as though Ron was imitating him.
Ron was the first person to take advantage of Corey; having already introduced him to various drugs, he created a cocktail for Feldman and made advances toward the teen. Too woozy and afraid to object, Feldman was horrified when Ron sexually attacked him.
He said in an interview many years later that, although he was "petrified" and "revolted," he was still terrified of losing his new friend.
The violation perpetrated by men in the movie industry began at such a young age that, for the Coreys, such occurrences became their sad reality. Both boys were often close friends with the same people who hurt them.
When he was interviewed later in life, Feldman described feeling like he had nowhere else to turn but to the men who were harming both him and Haim.
Interestingly, Feldman claims that one of his healthiest friendships was with Michael Jackson. One night, after escaping from Ron only to have another older man approach him, Feldman retreated to Michael Jackson's home. He says it was the only safe place he knew. Jackson was understanding and kind, and Corey claims Jackson never once acted inappropriately towards him.
Corey Feldman's father hired an assistant whom Feldman refers to as "Ron" in Coreyography. Ron was responsible for introducing Feldman to hard drugs. An older man in the industry did the same for Haim when he was a young teen. Haim drank beer on the set of Lucas in 1986, and a year later on the set of The Lost Boys, he smoked his first joint. His behavior escalated until he eventually began using crack.
While Feldman sought treatment for his addiction and emerged clean and sober, his counterpart didn't take the same path. Tragically, Haim passed from pneumonia at the age of 38. His condition was heavily complicated by decades of hard drug use.
Haims's autopsy found that he suffered respiratory distress related to pneumonia, but the illness was complicated by "the presence of an enlarged heart and narrowing blood vessels."