NEW YORK, July 19 (UPI) — Macaulay Culkin addressed his rumored drug use in a rare interview published Monday.
The 35-year-old actor dismissed reports of a heroin addiction while discussing his retreat from the spotlight with the Guardian. Culkin’s years-long absence from public life remains a topic of much speculation.
“No, I was not pounding six grand of heroin every month or whatever,” he said in response to rumors. “The thing that bugged me was tabloids wrapping it all in this weird guise of concern. No, you’re trying to shift papers.”
Culkin skyrocketed to fame as a pre-teen after starring in Home Alone and its sequel in the 1990s. The actor said he remains a target for paparazzi despite having purposely turned his back on the spotlight.
“I actively don’t want it. The paps go after me because I don’t [expletive] myself out,” he said. “The other day I’d crossed the wrong street, picked up a tail, suddenly there’s a crush of 20 paparazzi. Then people with cameraphones get involved. I don’t think I’m worthy of that.”
“It’s been like that my whole adult life,” the star added. “You take on a prey-like attitude, always scanning the horizon. It’s strange on dates, as it looks like you’re not paying attention.”
Culkin described himself as “effectively retired” from acting, focusing instead on “visual arts and writing.” He shared similar sentiments in an April interview with Vulture, revealing he spends much of his time in Paris to avoid harassment.
“I’m a man in his mid-30s who’s essentially retired,” the actor told Vulture. “I kind of go where the wind takes me a little bit.”
“Even if I don’t get bugged, it’s looming, it’s there,” he said of attention in the United States. “It turned out [in Paris] they recognized me, they just didn’t care. I was like, ‘Where have you people been my entire life?'”
Culkin voiced characters on Robot Chicken from 2005 to 2010 and made several appearances on The Jim Gaffigan Show in 2015 after a six-year hiatus from television. He most recently played Ralph in the movie Adam Green’s Aladdin.