Former Disney star Brenda Song has welcomed her first child with Home Alone’s Macaulay Culkin, the couple confirmed on 12 April.
Their newborn son was named after Culkin’s late sister, Dakota,who passed away in 2008 after being hit by a car.
Song and her son are home and healthy. The couple commented “We’re overjoyed,” when confirming the arrival of their son to Esquire.
So, who is Brenda Song, how did the couple meet and what do we know about their newborn son? This is everything you need to know.
Who is Brenda Song?
Song was born in 1988 in California, and became a childhood star, acting and modelling from the age of eight.
Raised in a small suburb of Sacramento, she is of Thai descent and has two younger brothers, Nathan and Timmy.
Song moved with her mother to Los Angeles at the age of six, and her brothers and father followed two years later.
Her parents sent her and her siblings to Taekwondo, for which she now holds a black belt.
Despite her busy acting career, she was homeschooled and achieved a high school diploma at 16 years old.
She later went on to graduate from the University of California, Berkeley in 2009, majoring in psychology and minoring in business.
She has been dating Macaulay Culkin since 2017 and the pair welcomed their first child together on 5 April 2021.
What has she starred in?
Song first appeared onscreen after working as a fashion model, debuting in US television series Fudge in 1995.
Following this, she also made appearances in 100 Deeds for Eddie McDowd (1999) and The Ultimate Christmas Present (2000), for which she won a Young Artist Award.
In 2002, aged 14, Song signed for Disney and launched a successful career as one of its leading child actors.
Her debut came in the Disney original movie Get a Clue (2002), but she became best known for her role as ditsy rich kid London Tipton, in the comedy series The Suite Life of Zack & Cody (2005–2008), and in the spinoff series The Suite Life on Deck, which ended in 2011.
She starred alongside other famous Disney faces, such as Ashley Tisdale and twins, Cole and Dylan Sprouse.
Song also starred in several films during her Disney contract, such as Stuck in the Suburbs (2004) and Wendy Wu: Homecoming Warrior (2006).
For Homecoming Warrior, she performed most of the stunts herself using her Taekwondo background. She later told how she used her mother’s battle with breast cancer in 2005 as motivation to endure the stunt training.
Disney Channel executive vice president Gary Marsh called the film "Buffy the Vampire Slayer meets Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon" and said of Song: "She's incredibly talented, she's smart. She adds diversity to our network, and she's a real kid.”
Following her decade-long career with Disney, Song broke into more mainstream television, appearing in the 2010 movie The Social Network, and in series such as Scandal and Dads.
For her role in Dads, she was criticised by an independent watchdog who claimed her “sexy Asian schoolgirl” outfit was racist. She defended her role, denied it had racist connotations, and refused to re-shoot the scenes.
Fox aired their first season but the show was not commissioned beyond one series.
In 2019, she starred in Netflix’s Secret Obsession, and appeared in the Seth Green movie Changeland.
She also returned to Disney, in its animated series Amphibia, as well as starring in Hulu’s comedy, Dollface.
How did she meet Macaulay Culkin?
Song and Culkin met in 2017, while filming Changeland in Thailand.
The couple soon moved in together and Culkin painted a yellow brick road leading to their front door.
Together they share three cats, one named Santa which Culkin bought for Song’s Christmas in 2019. They also have a few fish, a Shiba Inu dog, and a blue-headed pionus parrot.
Song prefers a private life, but did tell US Weekly in 2018: “I don’t like to talk about my personal life, but everything’s wonderful and I’m happy.”
That same year, Culkin said they hoped to have a family, and expressed how happy he was in his relationship.
In September 2018, he said: “I have a good life out here. I have a pretty little family - a pretty girl, a pretty dog, a pretty cat, and all that stuff. We’re gonna move. We’re doing the house thing and all that kind of stuff.”
Song told Esquire in 2020: “You can’t be around [Culkin] and not be happy.”
What do we know about the birth?
The pair announced the birth of their son on 12 April, one week after he was born on April 5.
Dakota Song Culkin was born at 1.10pm in Los Angeles and weighed 6lbs 14 ounces at birth.
What has Culkin said about becoming a father?
38-year-old Culkin has spoken openly about his wishes to have children with Song, 33.
On the Joe Rogan Experience podcast in 2018, he said: “I’m gonna make some babies.
“This one’s a good one, so I’m probably going to put some babies in her, in a little bit. I mean, we’ve definitely been practicing.”
He added: “This one, I’m going to have some pretty babies. She’s Asian, so I’m gonna have tiny little Asian babies. It’s going to be adorable.”
Following the birth of Dakota, the couple said they were overjoyed, while the name was a touching tribute to his late sister, Dakota Culkin.