Corey Haim, 38

Corey Haim, 38; 1980s teen idol for roles in 'Lucas' and 'Lost Boys'

Corey Haim in 1987. He told ABC in 2007 that drugs hurt his career.
Corey Haim in 1987. He told ABC in 2007 that drugs hurt his career. (Warner Brothers Via Associated Press)
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By Associated Press
Thursday, March 11, 2010

Corey Haim, 38, a 1980s teen heartthrob for his roles in the films "Lucas" and "The Lost Boys," whose career was blighted by drug abuse, died March 10 at a hospital in Burbank, Calif., according to the Los Angeles County coroner's office. There was no evidence of foul play, and an autopsy will determine the cause of death.

Police said Mr. Haim had flulike symptoms before he died and was taking over-the-counter and prescription medications. Mr. Haim was taken by ambulance to the hospital from an apartment in Los Angeles near Burbank after his mother called paramedics.

"He could have succumbed to whatever [illness] he had, or it could have been drugs. Who knows?" police Sgt. William Mann said. "He has had a drug problem in the past."

Mr. Haim acknowledged his struggle with drug abuse in a 2004 interview with the Sun, a British tabloid.

"I was working on 'Lost Boys' when I smoked my first joint," he said. "I did cocaine for about a year and a half, then it led to crack."

Mr. Haim said he went into rehabilitation and was put on prescription drugs. He took stimulants as well as sedatives such as Valium.

"I started on the downers, which were a hell of a lot better than the uppers because I was a nervous wreck," he said. "But one led to two, two led to four, four led to eight, until at the end it was about 85 a day."

In 2007, he told ABC's "Nightline" that drugs hurt his career.

"I feel like with myself I ruined myself to the point where I wasn't functional enough to work for anybody, even myself," he said.

The Toronto-born actor got his start in television commercials at 10 and earned good reviews for his work in such films as 1985's "Murphy's Romance" with James Garner and Sally Field and his portrayal of a dying son with Liza Minnelli as his mother in the 1985 TV movie "A Time to Live."

His career peaked when he became a teen heartthrob with his roles in the 1986 movie "Lucas" and 1987's "The Lost Boys," in which he battled vampires.

More recently, he made a few TV appearances and had several direct-to-video movies. In recent years, he appeared in the A&E reality TV show "The Two Coreys" with his actor friend Corey Feldman. It was canceled in 2008 after two seasons. Feldman later said Mr. Haim's drug abuse strained their working and personal relationships.

In a 2007 interview on CNN's "Larry King Live," Mr. Haim called himself "a chronic relapser for the rest of my life."

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