Michael Alig — the once-famous party promoter who ended up in prison for murder — was found dead on Christmas Eve of an apparent heroin overdose.
Michael’s story inspired what became the hit film ‘Party Monster’ starring Macaulay Culkin.
The 54-year-old former scene fixture-turned-slay convict was discovered by an ex-boyfriend just before midnight in his Washington Heights pad, authorities said.
Alig’s ex “was there and saw him unconscious and called 911,” a police source said. “[Alig] was on his side.”
Detectives recovered several zip-lock plastic bags, apparently containing heroin, from the home, as well as drug paraphernalia, officials said.
Alig’s death was the final chapter in a sordid, sensational — and decidedly cautionary — tale about striving to become famous in the Big Apple and ultimately succumbing to its excesses.
He was known in his heyday as the self-proclaimed “King of the Club Kids,” a group of outrageously dressed, drug-fueled hedonists staging the most sought-after nightclub parties in the 1980s and early 1990s.
Alig told The Post in an exclusive interview in 2014 how he grew up as a gay person in South Bend, Ind., wearing Izod — and felt as if he had finally come home after arriving in the Big Apple in 1984.
He moved to New York City to attend Fordham University — and quickly met a fellow student called Ludovic who changed the course of his life.
The young man, the boyfriend of famed pop artist Keith Haring, took Alig to a party that his beau was throwing at the now-defunct Area club on Hudson Street.
Ludovic wore underwear and white body paint as he swept the pair past the uber-choosy doorman.
Once inside the joint, Alig said, he was hooked.
“[I was] a misfit from the Midwest who came to New York City in search of acceptance, opportunity and a whole lot of fun,’’ Alig recalled to The Post.
“As a gay teen coming to terms with my sexuality, I was overwhelmed and exhilarated. It was liberating,’’ he wrote of the wild scene, which included androgyny icon Grace Jones partying among about 300 other people.
“Talk about being in the right place at the time,’’ Alig said. “While the rest of the country was entrenched in depressing Reaganomics and [the anti-drug campaign] ‘Just say no,’ downtown New York nightlife was having a moment.”
What a moment it was.
“Fabulous” was the word of the day. The wilder, more eccentric the makeup, hair and costumes, the better — and no one was held in more esteem in the hierarchy of alien-looking club-hoppers than a gender-bending man with an entourage.
Alig dropped out of school and joined the circuit, donning his own version of garish makeup and outlandish outfits to host parties at the Tunnel, Limelight and other nightclubs.
He became part of the scene’s exclusive, trend-setting group known as the “Club Kids’’ who were “paid merely to show up and bring a bit of fabulousness to the mix,’’ Alig recalled.
But with the excess-fueled fame and fortune came dangerous trappings, too, including drugs.
Alig began ingesting heroin, cocaine, ecstasy and ketamine with the best of them, as well as heavily boozing.
In March 1996, Alig and another friend, Robert “Freeze” Riggs, got into a beef with a small-time drug-peddling pal, Angel Melendez, while they were all on ketamine. Alig recalled to The Post how he and Riggs beat Melendez to death, then dismembered his body and tossed the parts into the Hudson River.
The killers were eventually caught and pleaded guilty to manslaughter.
Alig spent 14 years behind bars before being released in 2014. Riggs was freed in 2010.
Alig’s life was literally made for Hollywood, with his saga turned into a movie in 2003. Former child actor Macaulay Culkin portrayed him.
The fallen promoter tried to go the straight and narrow after prison by continuing to hone a skill he picked up behind bars — painting.
But he continued to battle his seemingly ever-present demons, getting busted for possession of crystal meth near Yankee Stadium in 2017.
Alig also was homeless off and on — admitting in 2018 that he turned to the gay-hook-up site Grindr at one point when he ran out of money “just to have some place to sleep’’ and at least once found himself camping out under a bridge.
When he came clean about his ongoing issues and was asked why it took him so long to admit to them, he said, “I didn’t really want to publicize it too much because I didn’t want it to end up on Page Six.
“It would be embarrassing.”
The ex-con moved into the Upper Manhattan apartment about six months ago, neighbors said — and there was apparent trouble from nearly the start.
“I used to hear a lot of drama from his place —a lot of people screaming,’’ next-door neighbor Elvis Miller, 27, told The Post on Friday. “Guys waiting eight hours outside his door, asking for him, asking for, ‘Michael.’
“He was always, like, acting a little bit out of his mind, like his nervous system wasn’t OK,’’ said Miller, who moved into the building four months ago. “He was stumbling, always rushing, always anxious.
“The last time I saw him, a guy was knocking and asking for him. Recently.”
Miller, when told that Alig was dead, responded, “Oh my God! He died?! I’m in shock. I saw the police car here last night. I didn’t know it was for him.”
It was only a matter of time before his lifestyle caught back up with him.