In the mid eighties, a teenage Corey Haim was one of the biggest stars on the planet. But before he reached the age of 20, he had spiralled into a life of addiction.

Sunday will mark nine years since the actor died, aged 38, after decades of struggling in the limelight for all the wrong reasons.

In desperate attempts to save his sinking career, Haim would go on to attend rehab no less than 15 times. In 2007 after a string of hospital visits, Haim was so broke he pulled his own teeth and cut his hair and tried to sell the body parts online to raise cash.

Haim called himself a "chronic relapser", who struggled dealing with reality. As his life crumbled, so did his ability to perform in movie roles and Haim retreated into a haze of drug use, eventually making disturbing claims about being raped by a Hollywood paedophile as a youngster.

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Haim died young of pneumonia and surrounded by prescription drugs, after collapsing in his mother's arms.

So how did Haim lose it all?

HAIM'S RISE TO FAME

Haim began acting at age 10, starring in the kids TV educational comedy series The Edison Twins from 1984 to 1985.

He then got his first feature film role in a thriller film, Firstborn, where on his first day shooting, he complimented his co-star, older actor Peter Weller, on his performance. Weller cornered him and threw him up against a wall.

They had to be separated by three assistants. Although Weller later apologised to Haim for the incident and attributed it to method acting, Haim, who was 13 at the time, said the incident terrified him.

But Haim recovered, going on to have a short and prolific period starring in a string of films between 1984 and 1985. This included Haim's breakout role in rom com Lucas where he plays a 14-year-old boy who falls for an older teenage cheerleader.

Haim fell in love with his co-star, Kerri Green, who was five years older than him. When she rebuffed his advances, he used the heartache inform his performance.

The film was a huge commercial and critical success, but a teenage Haim took up the habit of drinking beers on set.

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Corey Haim in 1987
Corey Haim in 1987

He was then cast in The Lost Boys, the film he is most well known for, where he plays a clean-cut kid whose brother becomes a vampire. He co-starred with Corey Feldman, who would become his lifelong best friend.

On set, he tried marijuana for the first time.

He went on to make a string of movies, nine of them with Feldman, but as his success climbed, his drug addiction worsened.

"I lived in LA in the 1980s, which was not the best place to be", Haim said of his increasing dependence on substances.

"I did cocaine for about a year and a half, then it led to crack." By the time he co-starred in License To Drive with Heather Graham, he said, he'd lost control of his addictions; he called it a turning point.

He entered rehab for the first time in 1989 at the age of 18, saying he'd got "out of whack". Haim said after months of dependence on drugs he found it "scary to come back down to earth". He blamed his addiction on the people he was running with, saying "as far as it goes, it's the crowd you hang out with".

One of Haim's minders, Julia Phillips, wrote in her memoir that she had "mixed feelings" about the actor, explaining he had an ability to make people do what he wanted. "Love him. Detest him too," she wrote. "Or at least the manipulative part that knew how to make people twice his age snap to."

Feldman and Haim were both famed for their drug use. His best friend was described as smoking "bales of weed" and having "coke-off" challenges with friends, seeing who could do the most lines and stay up the longest.

Haim was caught at one of his low points asking high school students where he could buy crack.

"I'm a chronic relapser," Haim said two years before he died. "I guess I always will be."

SEX ABUSE ACCUSATIONS EMERGE

It later emerged in Feldman's autobiography, Coreyography, that they'd bonded over a mutual understanding of a dark underworld of Hollywood predators preying on young talent.

Haim and Feldman met a couple months before they were to begin shooting The Lost Boys together, and Haim confided in him that on the set of Lucas an adult man involved in the production raped Haim behind a trailer.

"I was very, very awake and very ashamed of what was going on, how I put it, I was just … coming into Hollywood, man, [I was] just a horny little kid, like on drugs, getting fed drugs, man, by vampires."

In 2007, the two Coreys appeared together in an A&E reality series, in which Haim confronted Feldman about being sexually abused when he was young.

Referring to it as a "rape incident", Haim said it happened at the hands of one of Feldman's acquaintances.

"I have come to terms with this a long time ago but obviously not [totally]," Haim later said.

"Stuff happens when you are a kid, it scars you inside for life."

THE DARK SIDE

The Coreys would become lifelong best friends. Photo / Getty Images
The Coreys would become lifelong best friends. Photo / Getty Images

Haim and Feldman's accounts of Hollywood life as youngsters were strange, saying they were taken, along with stars like Alyssa Milano, to strange parties, and lived a life without supervision as their careers progressed.

"Growing up on movie sets has its ups and its downs," Haim told Vice magazine.

"I mean, sure, it's great, you get lots of attention, only three hours a day of school. There's makeup and wardrobe, movie premieres, limousines. It all sounds like fun, but when you are 12 or 13 years old, you're very, very impressionable."

Haim and Feldman became the hosts of a weekly underage party night for Hollywood Youth called Alphy's Soda Pop Club, they had their own "brat pack" that included Feldman and Alyssa Milano, who was his girlfriend.

The Soda Pop Club was a teenage Hollywood hotspot where child stars could party without supervision. Often seen there were Alyssa Milano, Tori Spelling, the Coreys, their friend Scott Grimes and Christina Applegate.

Before his death, Haim recounted fond, surreal memories of the Soda Pop Club, including the famous tale of Randy, an eccentric who ran the club, jumping down 11 storeys with a soda pop in his hand, landing on his feet.

The stunt, which sounds unreal, was turned into a commercial for fizzy drink. Haim watched it while holding one of Randy's pet tigers. "It was pretty trippy," he said.

Haim also told a story about driving around in a limousine with one of Randy's jaguars, which had to be tranquillised mid journey when it roared.

He said his time at the Soda Club was before he got into drugs, saying it just wasn't his style then.

"I got really sick and tired of Alphy Hoffman, to be honest with you," he said.

"I don't think he's a good human being, and you can print that sh** too!" he told Vice. He later tried to recant his statements.

Years after Haim's death, Feldman would say he and Haim were raped and intimidated by a number of men in a high-level ring of Hollywood paedophiles, who frequented the Soda Pop Club.

Haim never addressed whether he was molested while at the underage club, but said by the end of it he was in a bad way.

"By the end, it was dying out and everyone was on drugs! I was on drugs, Feldman was on drugs. At the end of it, we were 16 or 17 years old!"

It was alleged that Haim had, up until the time of his death, used a slew of fake names to help him acquire prescriptions.

By 1997, when he was about 26, Haim filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy.

In 2007 Haim attempted a career comeback, starring in 'The Two Coreys' with Feldman. Photo / Getty Images
In 2007 Haim attempted a career comeback, starring in 'The Two Coreys' with Feldman. Photo / Getty Images

His work to slowly tapered off in the early 2000s, in what he later referred to as an eight-year hiatus, where he holed up, saying he had "an addiction to pretty much everything".

In 2001, his mother found him unconscious at his home in LA, and he was rushed to hospital. He'd been in hospital just two weeks earlier for drug issues.

Haim had no insurance and was financially crippled by the amount of medical care he needed, and tried to sell his teeth and hair on eBay to pay his medical bills. But eBay blocked the sale citing a policy against selling human body parts.

In 2004 he was living in an apartment with his mother, where he would die six years later.

In 2007 it was reported that Haim, so befuddled by his drug use, checked himself into rehab because "he literally couldn't look at himself in the mirror."

Corey Haim 2007. Photo / Getty Images
Corey Haim 2007. Photo / Getty Images

HAIM DIED IN HIS MOTHER'S ARMS

Corey Haim tragically died when he was 38, in 2010, nine years ago on Sunday. He'd been living with his mother in an apartment block between Burbank and the Hollywood Hills.

A neighbour told CNN Haim had looked good before his death, he'd been gaining weight. But he also said the troubled actor could be seen wandering around, "looking for companionship, looking for friends."

At the time there was some confusion about what had killed the actor, with police saying he'd exhibited "flu-like symptoms" for two days and, after becoming dizzy; he'd needed to lie down. After this Haim had become unresponsive, and his mother called 911 at 1am.

Police said they found no illicit drugs on the property, but a number of prescription medications in different names were found around Haim. Police couldn't readily identify what they were, according to reports from the time.

"He could have succumbed to whatever [illness] he had or it could have been drugs," Sergeant William Mann told AP. "He has had a drug problem in the past."

Haim's agent, Mark Heaslip, dismissed the idea that Haim could have died of an overdose, and insisted his drug problems were behind him. "We do not think this is a drug overdose. Corey was actually going very clean in his life," he said.

In 2010 after his death, Vanity Fair's obituary said it was a "pity it took an obituary to remind us of Corey Haim".