Total Nerd Macaulay Culkin's Life Has Been More Bizarre Than Anyone Could Have Guessed  

Zack Howe
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Where has Macaulay Culkin been? Although his childhood acting heyday is far behind him, Culkin occasionally pops back up in the Zeitgeist (and into our hearts) in a wide variety of contexts, whether it be with his surprising relationship with Mila Kunis or his exceptionally weird concept band that is a tribute to both The Velvet Underground and pizza. He is not alone on the list of child actors who stopped acting, but he does seem to have a certain je ne sais quoi about him that makes his intermittent public appearances extra special. 

The kid from Home Alone has not simply been marveling at his fortune he made as a child. He hasn't come forward with sexual assault allegations like other former child stars. And, despite some rumors about drug addiction, he seems to be doing more than fine now.

Let's explore what happened to Macaulay Culkin since those days when he was thwarting inept criminals and making millions in the process.

Macaulay Culkin Became Emancipated From His Parents At 14


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Photo:  Alan Light/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY 2.0

Culkin's dad Kit was his manager, and he didn't have a great reputation around Hollywood. He was a heavy drinker, arrogant and domineering -  the stereotypical parent of a child actor, but worse. Culkin's mom Patricia wasn't much better, which ultimately led to a brutal custody battle that seemed to have a lot more to do with Macaulay's amassed wealth then their shared DNA. Culkin retired at 14 with a fortune that ranged anywhere from $17 million to $50 million, depending on the source, and sought representation so he could be legally emancipated from his parents; he was within a year. Kit Culkin recently told Daily Mail that Macaulay is no longer his son.

The Pizza Underground Is His Ironic Band


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Photo: The Pizza Underground/Facebook

The Pizza Underground formed in 2012 and it's both ridiculous and riveting. The group claims to be a Velvet Underground tribute band, which it generally is, but it replaces lyrics to their songs with pizza themes and puns. One band member, Deenah Vollmer, even "plays" a pizza box.

The band has received... mixed reviews. In 2014 at Nottingham Rock City, they were violently ushered off-stage by irate onlookers who threw pints of beer at them just 15 minutes into the show. They canceled their ensuing European tour due to something they called a "cheesemergency." Somehow, as of late 2016, the band was still at it, claiming they had a free album on the way, but it's unclear if they're still working as their social media has become rather silent.

There Have Been Rumors About Drug Addiction


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Photo: Judy Clements-Turner/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY-SA 3.0

In 2012, rumors of Culkin having serious drug problems started flooding tabloids. It started with an photo snapped of him in which he looked a bit on the unhealthy side. It was shortly after his breakup with Mila Kunis, and he had been arrested for drug possession in the past, which added fuel to the fire. Culkin, of course, was not pleased with the press, but it was more about the tone of the coverage that he found most offensive.

"I was not pounding six grand of heroin every month or whatever. The thing that bugged me was tabloids wrapping it all in this weird guise of concern. No, you’re trying to shift papers," he told The Guardian. Whether or not he did have a battle with drugs isn't illuminated, but he seems to be in a good place now.

He Wrote A Book Entitled "Junior"


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Photo: Macaulay Culkin/Amazon

Macaulay Culkin's not-novel, Junior, is hard to classify. When ABC News reported on it in 2006, they had such a difficult time summarizing it, so they opted to include the entire introduction of the book in their article. Junior takes on many literary (and non-literary) forms: a collection of vignettes, some stream-of-consciousness, and even cartoons. It is an autobiography, in many ways, as it's about a child star with daddy issues, and yet claims not to be.

Perhaps the real title of the book says all it needs to say: Junior, or Oscar De La Mancha, The Wembling Warrior, and the People I Like the Least. Not A Novel. A written project from the normal, well adjusted and 'No I don't have issues with my father!' mind of … junior (meaning me)