The 38-year-old actor got candid about his relationship with the King of Pop during the latest episode of Michael Rosenbaum’s Inside of You podcast, released on Tuesday. During their hour-long chat, the two touched on Culkin’s early rise to fame and his friendship with Jackson.
“He reached out to me because a lot of things were happening, big and fast with me and I think he identified with that,'” Culkin said, explaining that they became friends after his Home Alone success. “At the end of the day, it’s almost easy to say it was weird or whatever, but it wasn’t because it made sense. At the end of the day, we were friends.”
The actor continued, adding that people only think their friendship was odd because Jackson “was the most famous person in the world.” When Rosenbaum noted that there was a huge age gap between the two, Culkin responded that he “was a peerless person.”
“Nobody else in my Catholic school had even this much idea of what I was going through and he was the kind of person who’d been through the exact same frickin’ thing and wanted to make sure I wasn’t alone,” he explained, describing the icon as a “hilarious,” “sweet” and “funny” friend.
“For me, it’s so normal and mundane,” he continued. “I know it’s a big deal to everyone else, but to me, it was a normal friendship.”
Culkin’s friendship with the “Beat It” singer also extended to his children. The former child star is also godfather to all three of Jackson’s kids. Last year, Culkin explained that he’s not comfortable talking about his godchildren, and is very protective of Paris Jackson.
“I’m going to warn you now, I am very protective of her so just look out,” he said during an interview with Marc Maron’s WTF podcast last January. “I am a very open book when it comes to things but, like, with her, she is beloved by me.”