Macaulay Culkin Speaks On His Childhood Friendship With Michael Jackson

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“If I had something to speak up about, I would totally do it.”

In Macaulay Culkin’s new cover story for Esquire, it’s written that “[Michael] Jackson was often the schoolmate [Culkin] never had.” The friendship between these two began when Jackson reached out to Culkin after he starred in Home Alone. Given that the child actor was 10 years old at the time, their relationship was placed under scrutiny following the airing of HBO’s Leaving Neverland documentary, which shared testimonies alleging that Jackson had molested two minors in the late 80’s and early 90’s. In his Esquire interview, Culkin shuts down any suspicions that he may have been a victim of similar circumstances. 

“Look,” Culkin said. “I’m gonna begin with the line—it’s not a line, it’s the truth: He never did anything to me. I never saw him do anything. And especially at this flash point in time, I’d have no reason to hold anything back. The guy has passed on. If anything—I’m not gonna say it would be stylish or anything like that, but right now is a good time to speak up. And if I had something to speak up about, I would totally do it. But no, I never saw anything; he never did anything.”

Culkin then shared a story of when James Franco probed him about Leaving Neverland during a chance encounter: “Here’s a good Michael Jackson story that doesn’t involve Michael Jackson at all: I ran into James Franco on a plane. I’d bumped into him two or three times over the years. I give him a little nod as we’re putting our bags overhead. Hey, how you doing? Good, how ya doing? And it was right after the Leaving Neverland documentary came out, and he goes, ‘So, that documentary!’ And that was all he said. I was like, ‘Uh-huh.’ Silence. So then he goes, ‘So what do you think?’ And I turned to him and I go, ‘Do you wanna talk about your dead friend?’ And he sheepishly went, ‘No, I don’t.’ So I said, ‘Cool, man, it was nice to see you.’ ”

In the Esquire piece, Culkin also recounts his last time seeing Jackson.