Give Me the Money

Ah, parents. Can’t live with them. Can’t live without them… Or can you?

Many child stars believe they would be better off being independent from their parents, most of them before they can even drive, so they go to court to basically divorce their parents. Crazy? Well, they have their reasons.

Seeking emancipation is not uncommon in the world of entertainment. Many stars, like Macaulay Culkin, file for emancipation because they are tired of their parents’ greed and mismanagement of their money, while others, like Alicia Silverstone, just want to get around child labor laws so they can work more hours and take on more demanding roles.

Culkin, one of America’s favorite and most successful child stars from the “Home Alone” movies, became emancipated at the age of 16. His parents went through a brutal custody fight, and Culkin decided to subtract himself – and his $17 million earnings – from the equation. The family accountant was then in charge of the money until Culkin turned 18.

In contrast, Silverstone, popularly known for her role in “Clueless,” became emancipated at the age of 15, with her parents’ blessing, simply to land more jobs, specifically a role in the movie “The Crush.” The producers of the film encouraged Silverstone to go through with the emancipation in order to work with them. Her parents were cautious and concerned about losing their daughter, but “nothing really changed,” Silverstone said.

Many parents become their child’s manager, however, these family-business relationships have often resulted in arguments, lawsuits and even loss of contact among families.

Keeping personal life and business separate may seem like it would be an easy fix, but is there really a solution? It may go back to the morality of the parents, maybe the arrogance of the child… No one is perfect, but at the end of the day it is important to keep family close, am I right?

-Chelsea Church



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