From Teen Stardom to Tragedy: The Life and Career of Corey Haim
User avatar
Curated by
cdteliot
7 min read
28 days ago
289
4
Corey Haim, a Canadian actor who rose to fame as a teen heartthrob in the 1980s, starred in iconic films like "The Lost Boys" and "Lucas" before struggling with addiction later in life. Known for his charismatic performances and on-screen partnership with Corey Feldman, Haim's promising career was cut short by his untimely death in 2010 at the age of 38.

 

Haim's Early Life and Career

people.com
people.com
Corey Ian Haim was born on December 23, 1971, in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, to Judy and Bernie Haim. A shy child, Haim's mother enrolled him in drama classes to help him build confidence. Initially more interested in sports and comic books, Haim's interest in acting grew after watching his sister, Carol, audition for roles. By age 10, he began appearing in commercials and soon landed his first significant role in the Canadian television series "The Edison Twins" (1982-1986). This early exposure to acting set the stage for his subsequent success in Hollywood.
jewishvirtuallibrary.org favicon
biography.com favicon
tribute.ca favicon
5 sources

 

Corey Haim's Breakout Role in Lucas

imdb.com
imdb.com
Corey Haim's breakout role came in the 1986 film "Lucas," where he played the titular character, a socially awkward high school student who falls for a cheerleader named Maggie, portrayed by Kerri Green. Directed by David Seltzer, the film also featured performances by Charlie Sheen and Winona Ryder, marking Ryder's film debut. Haim's portrayal of Lucas was widely praised, with Roger Ebert giving the film four out of four stars and highlighting its focus on the genuine emotions and struggles of teenagers. Despite its critical acclaim, "Lucas" was not a box office success, grossing $8.2 million against a $6 million budget. Haim's performance earned him a Young Artist Award nomination and solidified his status as a rising star in Hollywood.
espn.com favicon
en.wikipedia.org favicon
msoldschool.livejournal.com favicon
5 sources

 

Corey Haim's Career Peak: Starring in 'License to Drive' and 'Dream a Little Dream' with Corey Feldman"

imdb.com
imdb.com
Corey Haim's career peaked in the late 1980s with notable films such as "License to Drive" (1988) and "Dream a Little Dream" (1989), both of which he starred in alongside Corey Feldman. These films solidified his status as a teen heartthrob, with Haim receiving over 2,000 fan letters weekly and frequently appearing in teen magazines like "Tiger Beat" and "Bop". His signature lopsided smile and boyish charm made him a favorite among adolescent audiences. "License to Drive" was particularly successful, showcasing Haim's comedic talents and further cementing his popularity. Despite his rising fame, Haim's struggles with addiction began to surface during this period, impacting his career trajectory.
rrstar.com favicon
biography.com favicon
celebritynetworth.com favicon
5 sources

The Two Coreys: A Dynamic Duo

ign.com
ign.com
The Two Coreys, consisting of Corey Feldman and Corey Haim, became a cultural phenomenon in the 1980s. Their on-screen chemistry was first evident in "The Lost Boys" (1987), which sparked "Corey Mania" and changed their lives forever. The duo appeared in a total of nine films together, including popular titles like "License to Drive" (1988) and "Dream a Little Dream" (1989). Their popularity was so immense that they were often chased by screaming fans, with Haim recalling, "Everywhere we went, all over the United States, anytime we showed up together... it was just this apex of pandemonium and insanity". The Two Coreys' fame led to them becoming the highest-paid teen actors in Hollywood at the time. However, their careers were later affected by drug use, and they attempted a comeback with the reality show "The Two Coreys" on A&E Network from 2007 to 2008.
en.wikipedia.org favicon
en.wikipedia.org favicon
twitter.com favicon
5 sources

 

Corey Haim (Photos)

facts.net
facts.net
imdb.com
imdb.com
twincities.com
twincities.com

Corey Haim Filmography

Corey Haim's filmography showcases his extensive work in both film and television, highlighting his versatility as an actor. Below is a table summarizing some of his notable roles:
YearTitleRoleNotes
1984FirstbornBrian LivingstonFilm debut
1985Silver BulletMarty CoslawBased on Stephen King's novella
1986LucasLucas BlyeBreakout role
1987The Lost BoysSam EmersonCult classic
1988License to DriveLes AndersonComedy film
1989Dream a Little DreamDingerFantasy comedy
1990Prayer of the RollerboysGriffinSci-fi action
1993Double SwitchEddieLive-action video game
2000Big Wolf on CampusHimselfTV series, episode: "Blame it on the Haim"
2007-2008The Two CoreysHimselfReality TV series
2009Crank: High VoltageRandyCameo role
2010The Hostage GameTom MacLeanOne of his final films
Haim's career spanned various genres, from horror and comedy to science fiction and drama, reflecting his dynamic range as an actor.
en.wikipedia.org favicon
imdb.com favicon
biography.com favicon
5 sources

 

Corey Haim's Awards and Honors

Corey Haim received several awards and nominations throughout his career, reflecting his talent and impact on the film industry. Below is a table summarizing his notable awards and honors:
YearAwardCategoryWork
1986Young Artist AwardExceptional Performance by a Young Actor in a Feature Film: Comedy or Drama"Lucas"
1987Young Artist AwardBest Young Actor in a Motion Picture - Drama"A Time to Live"
1989Young Artist AwardBest Young Actor in a Motion Picture - Comedy"License to Drive"
1992Saturn AwardBest Performance by a Younger Actor"Prayer of the Rollerboys"
These accolades highlight Haim's early promise and the recognition he garnered for his performances in both dramatic and comedic roles.
emmys.com favicon
fr-ca.findagrave.com favicon
famousfix.com favicon
5 sources

Corey Haim's Legacy

youtube.com
youtube.com
Watch
youtube.com
youtube.com
Watch

 

Haim's Personal Struggles and Abuse

Corey Haim's personal struggles were marked by early exposure to drugs, allegations of sexual abuse, and significant financial difficulties. Haim's substance abuse issues began during his teenage years, with his first experiences of drinking beer on the set of "Lucas" at age 15 and smoking marijuana while filming "The Lost Boys" at 16. His drug use escalated to cocaine and eventually crack cocaine, leading to multiple stints in rehab starting at age 18. Despite numerous attempts to get clean, Haim described himself as a "chronic relapser," a term he used to acknowledge his ongoing battle with addiction. Haim's addiction issues were compounded by allegations of sexual abuse within the industry. He claimed to have been raped at age 11 on the set of "Lucas," an experience that he believed contributed to his substance abuse problems. Corey Feldman, Haim's close friend and frequent co-star, corroborated these allegations, stating that both he and Haim were victims of a Hollywood pedophile ring during their teenage years. Financial difficulties also plagued Haim's life. By the early 2000s, his career had significantly declined, leading him to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 1997. Desperate for money, Haim even attempted to sell his hair and teeth on eBay, though the site blocked the sale. His financial woes were exacerbated by his ongoing medical expenses related to his addiction, and he struggled to pay his hospital bills after multiple overdoses and health issues. Despite brief periods of sobriety and attempts to revive his career, Haim's personal struggles ultimately overshadowed his professional achievements. His tragic death at age 38 was attributed to pneumonia, though his long history of drug addiction cast a shadow over the circumstances of his passing.
allthatsinteresting.com favicon
abcnews.go.com favicon
today.com favicon
5 sources

Career Decline and Comebacks

vanityfair.com
vanityfair.com
Corey Haim's career decline began in the 1990s, marked by a transition to direct-to-video releases and numerous attempts at comebacks. After his early success, Haim struggled to secure significant roles, leading him to star in lower-budget films like "Universal Groove" (1999) and "Without Malice" (2000). His addiction issues further hampered his career, resulting in erratic behavior on set and missed opportunities. In an effort to revive his career, Haim participated in the reality TV series "The Two Coreys" (2007-2008) alongside Corey Feldman, which aimed to document their lives and rekindle their on-screen partnership. However, the show was canceled midway through its second season due to Haim's ongoing struggles with addiction. Despite brief periods of sobriety and roles in films like "Crank: High Voltage" (2009) and "American Sunset" (2010), Haim's career never fully recovered, and he remained largely out of the Hollywood spotlight until his untimely death in 2010.
en.wikipedia.org favicon
mirror.co.uk favicon
msoldschool.livejournal.com favicon
5 sources

 

Corey Haim's Later Years: Ongoing Struggles with Addiction Despite Rehab Attempts

en.wikipedia.org
en.wikipedia.org
In his later years, Corey Haim continued to battle addiction, despite numerous attempts at rehabilitation. He was admitted to rehab more than 15 times, struggling with dependencies on substances like cocaine, Valium, and various prescription drugs. Haim's addiction issues were compounded by financial difficulties, leading him to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and even attempt to sell his hair and teeth on eBay out of desperation. In 2008, after a series of relapses, Haim moved back to Toronto to live with his mother, hoping to find stability and support. Despite these efforts, his health continued to decline, and he was hospitalized multiple times for drug-related issues, including a drug-induced stroke in 2001. Tragically, Haim passed away in 2010 at the age of 38, with an autopsy revealing pneumonia as the cause of death, though his long history of drug addiction cast a shadow over the circumstances.
abcnews.go.com favicon
allthatsinteresting.com favicon
mirror.co.uk favicon
5 sources

Posthumous Revelations and Impact

rollingstone.com
rollingstone.com
Corey Feldman's documentary, "My Truth: The Rape of 2 Coreys," released in 2020, brought to light the alleged sexual abuse he and Corey Haim endured as child actors in the 1980s. Feldman named Jon Grissom, Alphy Hoffman, and Marty Weiss as his abusers and alleged that Charlie Sheen raped Haim on the set of "Lucas" in 1986, a claim Sheen has denied. The documentary faced significant challenges, including hacking attempts during its premiere, and received a mixed reception, which Feldman said exacerbated his PTSD. Feldman has been vocal about the need for systemic change in Hollywood to protect child actors, drawing parallels to the #MeToo movement and advocating for legislative reforms to extend the statute of limitations for childhood sexual assault victims. The film has sparked ongoing discussions about the exploitation of child actors and the industry's responsibility to ensure their safety.
newsweek.com favicon
rollingstone.com favicon
reddit.com favicon
5 sources

 

Closing Thoughts

Corey Haim's journey from a beloved teen idol to a tragic figure underscores the volatile nature of the entertainment industry, particularly for child stars. His early success, marked by major roles in films like "The Lost Boys" and "Lucas," showcased his undeniable talent and charisma. However, the pressures of fame, coupled with the darker aspects of Hollywood, including substance abuse and allegations of sexual exploitation, took a severe toll on his life and career. Haim's story serves as a poignant reminder of the vulnerabilities faced by young actors and the need for systemic changes to protect them within the industry. His legacy, though marred by personal struggles, continues to evoke discussions about the responsibilities of producers and the entertainment industry in safeguarding the well-being of its stars.
latimes.com favicon
sg.news.yahoo favicon
statesman.com favicon
5 sources
Related
What were the most iconic roles Corey Haim played in the 1980s
How did Corey Haim's death impact his fans and the entertainment industry
What were the key differences between Corey Haim's and Corey Feldman's careers
How did Corey Haim's reality show with Feldman perform in ratings
What were the major controversies surrounding Corey Haim's career
Keep Reading