’80s heartthrob Corey Haim is not the first– or the last– former squeaky clean child star who later became a drug addict (read: Lindsay Lohan) and while some make a successful recovery like Lohan, many unfortunately do not. Whether it’s to sell more records, fit in with a certain trend, or due to mounting pressure in the spotlight, we’ve watched child stars “go bad” so frequent, it’s become a syndrome of sorts. After showcasing all her bad girl glory on the MTV VMA stage (much like Britney Spears did in 2001) it seems as if Miley Cyrus is essentially following Britney’s footsteps. Sometimes the transition works, like in the case of Selena Gomez, other times it’s painful to watch (read: Amanda Bynes). See the 15 most notorious cases of the child stars gone bad.
Before twerk Miley, Cyrus was Disney’s saccharine sweet Hannah Montana. Two years after her Disney reign, the ‘Wrecking Ball’ singer ditched her good girl image, and is now on a mission to piss off every parent. Just this month, it was revealed that VOGUE‘s Anna Wintour revoked Miley’s December cover after catching wind to the now notorious latex-clad VMA performance.
Shout out to Selena Gomez for maintaining some class while carefully stripping away her former squeaky clean Disney image. Gomez’s first step into R-rated territory happened earlier this year with the release of the Harmony Korine directed film, Spring Breakers, where Selena plays a bikini-clad thief. Since her racy film debut, even her music has a new touch of Rihanna-influence to it, of course without the Rihanna image.
Linday’s falls from grace is especially tragic for LiLo fans who remember her debut in Parent Trap, and her role in Mean Girls. Since her onscreen debut, we’ve watched Lindsay go from ‘it’ girl to bad girl to felon, now after a string of arrests and rehab stints LiLo now is focusing on staying sober and employed.
’80s teen heartthrob Corey Haim began his acting career at age 8, and then became a well known child actor star by 12. During the height of his career, he fell into cr-ack coke, and checked into rehab more than 15 times. In 2010, Haim died from an apparent drug overdose after years of struggling with coke and Valium addiction.
How can anyone forget Britney’s transition from school girl to not-that innocent pop queen? On Spears’ second album, Oops…I Did It Again, the pop star proclaimed she was not a girl not yet a woman, and then went on to debut her streamy single “Slave 4 U” at the VMAs with an equally steamy performance.
Britney may have turned bad, but X-Tina got dirty. After the success of Christina Aguilera, the former Disney star took the reigns for her second opus, Stripped and introduced the world to a grittier X-Tina with the help of rapper Redman.
Drew Barrymore was born into A-list film stars, so naturally by the time she was 2, Barrymore had already starred in a fair share of commercials and films. Her breakout role in E.T. at age 10 catapulted her career…and early drug and drinking addiction. Barrymore began drinking at 11, smoking pot at 12 and started abusing coke at 13. She attempted suicide at 14, before checking into rehab for a second time.
Amanda Bynes kicked off her professional acting career at the age of 7, and then hit big as a reoccurring cast member in Nickelodeon’s Figure It Out and All That before hosting her own show, called The Amanda Show. After appearing in a slew of films, Bynes announced her retirement at 24, and was soon arrested for a DUI. More recently, Bynes fell into a well-documented downward spiral that ultimately landed her at UCLA’s psychiatric ward.
Things have been rough for Macaulay Culkin after his role in Home Alone. In 2004 the actor was arrested for possession of kush and prescription pills. In 2011, after splitting with girlfriend Mila Kunis after 10 years, photos surfaced of a frail and disheveled Culkin surfaced online fueling rumors of a heroine and prescription pill addiction. Sad.
Family Matters’ youngest daughter fell into hard times in the mid-90s and early aughts when she was unable to find work years after her stint as Judy on the sitcom. Foxworth later fell into drinking and felt forced to launch a career (albeit short-lived) in Adult Videos in order to financially support her family.
Demi Lovato’s career kicked off when she was just seven on Barney & Friends. After a long hiatus, she returned to the spotlight with the Disney Channel original movie Camp Rock before a starring role on the Disney show, Sonny With a Chance. However, Lovato’s squeaky clean image was soon tarnished after drug allegations plagued her career. After a nude photo leak, and a public physical altercation with a backup dancer, Lovato checked herself into rehab.
Vanessa Hudgens first started her performing career at the age of 8-years-old, before landing a role in Disney’s High School Musical. Shortly after High School Musical 2 released, photos of the then 16-year-old posing nude and in lingerie surfaced online. In 2009 another set of nude photos leaked, and then in 2011 a video and t0pless flicks were stolen and released.
10-year-old Shia LaBeouf first hit the scene performing stand-up comedy before landing a starring role on Disney’s Even Stevens. Seven years after the show’s cancellation, LaBeouf’s legal trouble began raking up, first in 2007 when he was arrested for appearing drunk and refusing to leave a Chicago Walgreens. In 2008, Shia ended up in the hospital after crashing his car, and was later charged with a DUI and had his licensed suspended for a year. In February and October of 2011 the actor was arrested AGAIN, both times for assaulting a fellow bar patron. Since his arrest spree, Shia has laid low.
Actress Jodie Sweetin’s career kicked off when she was just four as middle child, Stephanie on Full House. After the show ended, Sweetin’s career dissolved, and the actress hit rock bottom after falling into drug addiction. In her memoir Sweetin revealed the height of her drug use and confirmed she was sober.