Hello reddit. It’s me: your absentee leader. This is my first time here, so I’d appreciate it if you’d be gentle… Just kidding. Go right ahead and throw all your randomness at me. I can take it.

Also, I'd be remiss if I didn’t mention my new film, The Judge, is in theaters THIS FRIDAY. Hope y’all can check it out. It’s a pretty special film, if I do say so myself.

Here’s a brand new clip we just released where I face off with the formidable Billy Bob Thornton: http://trailers.apple.com/trailers/wb/thejudge/.

Feel free to creep on me with social media too:

Victoria's helping me out today. AMA.


Edit: This was fun. And incidentally, thank you for showing up for me. It would've been really sad, and weird, if I'd done an Ask Me Anything and nobody had anything to ask. As usual, I'm grateful, and trust me - if you're looking for an outstanding piece of entertainment, I won't steer ya wrong. Please see The Judge this weekend.

Comments: 14475 • Responses: 63  • Date: 

logicatch4165 karma

Your portrayal as Kirk Lazarus in Tropic Thunder was, in my opinion, one of the best comedic performances of all time, but it must have felt like a very risky role to take on. Did you have any fears about how the character would be perceived? What did you do to prepare yourself for the role?

Robert_DowneyJr4046 karma

Fortunately, it's about an affably self-important white guy who thinks he understands the "black experience." It was so wrong and outrageous that it was forgivable. But I certainly was happy to hear from my African-American friends that they were okay with it, and some of them even delighted in telling me what relative it reminded them of. Somebody just told me just the other day that they're convinced that I was channeling Wesley Snipes. He's a pretty cool customer, so I don't want to presume I would be up to the task.

darabfox3987 karma

how is it that your facial hair is always on point?

Robert_DowneyJr4584 karma


Excellent question.

It started with the first Iron Man: a guy named Pedro from Shave of Beverly Hills. I mean, this guy's an artist. He's like the Edward Scissorhands of Mustaches and Beards. And then, once you set a standard, it's all about upkeep and modulating it. It tends to be a lot of work, but I'm glad you appreciate it.

escherbach3579 karma

When you signed on for Iron Man did you ever imagine how incredibly popular the character would be? How do you feel about it all now?

Robert_DowneyJr4094 karma

It was beyond my comprehension for the first 2 years. And now I see it as a logical, lucky, entertaining piece of history.

Aznb01p3455 karma

Would you be willing to elaborate on how going to prison made you lean conservative?

In 2009 Downey conveyed his politically rightward drift to N.Y. Times reporter David Carr. “I have a really interesting political point of view, and it’s not always something I say too loud at dinner tables here, but you can’t go from a $2,000-a-night suite at La Mirage to a penitentiary and really understand it and come out a liberal. You can’t. I wouldn’t wish that experience on anyone else, but it was very, very, very educational for me and has informed my proclivities and politics ever since.”

Also the marketing for The Judge is very strange. A couple of months ago, it looked like a serious drama and now more like a legal comedy.


Robert_DowneyJr4400 karma

I'll answer the second question first.

Over the course of lead-up to releasing The Judge, the audiences were telling us that yes, the evocative, dramatic aspects of the film were primarily what was holding their attention, however as our test scores were going higher and higher, much of that was due to the giddy dispersion of moments of laughter and release, situations and characters who behaved in a funny manner. And so Team Downey and the studio decided it was natural to lean into that. At its core, you could call it a drama. It's a surprisingly humorous movie. In other words, it's not a bleak nihilistic downer. It's quite uplifting.

Over the last 10 years, the world has changed, and I'm no exception. What I love about America is that your political views are not fixed by nature. It's natural that I would see the downside of liberalism while housed in an institution, as it's not an uncommon occurrence for people to take advantage of a system that caters to its psychological needs. To be pointed, humanity (myself included) is not above manipulating a democratic situation to suit its own selfish short-term goals. I hope that offers an explanation.

YesKnope3209 karma

What ongoing TV show would you be willing to guest star or do a cameo for?

Robert_DowneyJr4534 karma

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

judomonkeykyle3189 karma

If you were to appear on Comedy Central's Drunk History, what historical person would you talk about?

Robert_DowneyJr4191 karma

Excellent question.

Probably our hemp-headed forefathers. I guess they'd be called Founding Fathers. I'm pretty sure Jefferson grew a bunch of weed...

hottertopic2968 karma

Hi Robert, thanks for visiting Reddit. I was wondering, will we ever see a Sherlock 3? And what other fictional character would you love to play?

Robert_DowneyJr4073 karma

Yes, we have a Sherlock 3 in development. We want it to be the best of the series, so that's a pretty tall order. Also, Perry Mason is a property I'm looking forward to developing further, going back to the 1931 book series...similarly to what we did with the first 2 Sherlocks, mining the original material for things that are "new."

Mist3rA2925 karma

If you were a pizza, what kind of toppings would you have?

Robert_DowneyJr4398 karma

I've been waiting for this question.


Extra cheese.




Solarux2845 karma

A long while ago you were in Southern Illinois/Western Kentucky filming the movie US Marshals. It was during a lovely weeknight that I found myself having dinner at the same Applebee's restaurant as you.

To the entertainment of my friends, I walked over to your table to say "hello" and casually chat things up with a movie star. It was brief, friendly, and nothing out of the ordinary. However, a while later I realized that I rudely interrupted your dinner, payed hardly any attention to your friend (who you politely introduced me to), and give little to no respect to your quiet evening or the tantalizing chicken salad in front of you.

From time-to-time that random evening of crossing paths at Applebee's pops in my head and I cringe at the thought of my crass, ill-mannered rudeness.

I am incredibly sorry for interrupting your dinner. Do you think you could ever find it in your heart to forgive me?

Robert_DowneyJr3443 karma

Meet me at Applebee's. And we'll figure it all out. No harm, no foul. I have no recollection of any negative behaviors on your part. Give yourself a break!

jebuz602835 karma

Thank you for making kiss kiss bang bang. Very underrated. What's your favorite story about making that film?

Robert_DowneyJr3639 karma

It was entirely shot at night. We were pretty giddy most of the time. I saw it last week by chance, and had a flood of fond memories. On the first day of shooting, Val Kilmer (genius) almost choked to death on a piece of catering chicken right before we shot the first scene of the movie. His eyes were still watering until we got to his close up.

I'm so happy he's still with us.

tomzorzhu2763 karma

Hi! This AMA is someting we've all been waiting for :D

My question: Any chance you'll drop by on Agents of SHIELD this season? :)

Robert_DowneyJr3461 karma

Nothing is impossible. But there might be a fair amount of red tape involved in something like that. I love Clark Gregg, and am pleased the show is doing so well.

BenFailsAgain2735 karma

Hey Robert,

I was just wondering if you've watched BBC Sherlock and also, what is your opinion on Benedict Cumberbatch?


Robert_DowneyJr3816 karma

Very impressed with Benedict. Such smart writing on that show. I have screen envy.

Sakura_72548 karma

Who's your favorite superhero?

Robert_DowneyJr3857 karma

My 2 year old is fond of Hawkeye, so just for today, he'll top my list.

Sumidiotdude2461 karma

Has Downy ever contacted you for a sponsorship?

Robert_DowneyJr3652 karma

No, and I'm incensed.

There's no E in their Downy, so if they wouldn't mind a rebrand with an additional vowel, I'd meet them halfway.

operation_hennessey2404 karma

Can you tell us something about yourself that we may find surprising?

Robert_DowneyJr3867 karma

I require at least one bath per day.

TalwaarKaMusafir2329 karma

What is your rapper name?

Robert_DowneyJr4527 karma


atomicknyte2286 karma

There are only four celebrities that I would want to hang out and have a beer with, but only as characters they have played; you as Kirk “I know who I am” Lazarus, Neil Patrick Harris as Barney, Matthew Lillard as Shaggy and Morgan Freeman as God. Which non-Hollywood celebrities would you most like to hang out with?

Robert_DowneyJr3353 karma

A) I'd like to spend more time with Elon Musk.

B) Andrew Luck, I got to meet him a few days ago, he seems cool, quarterback for the Indianapolis Colts.

Let's see... so many great new tennis players too...

C) Anderson Cooper.

awhiteblack2231 karma

What's at the top of your bucket list?

Robert_DowneyJr3980 karma

exhaling noise

India. I want to possess it.

rdjfan2157 karma

First of all, I want to say that I love your Facebook page. I check it every day, and it always makes me smile.

My question is: In the last few years, it seems like the media has increasingly identified you with the character of Tony Stark. Can you talk about what that’s like, and how you hold onto your identity in the face it it?

Robert_DowneyJr3394 karma

Let me try.

The first Iron Man was essentially wrapping the character around a cooler version of "me." As we've gone along, I'm starting to wonder who's playing who, and I'm glad there are so many talented new people in the Marvel lineup. Ultimately, I'm real, and he's not. It's kind of important for me to remember that.

PianoWhore2056 karma

Being such a big star I imagine that you get many people asking for autographs etc. I was wondering what is the strangest or most memorable fan encounter that you've had?

Robert_DowneyJr3634 karma

I love running into kids who didn't expect to see me. I once ran into a four year old who just happened to be wearing a Captain America mask at the time. It seemed natural to him, being that he was Cap, to see some of his friends around. I think I was more excited than him.

For the most part, autograph collectors are pretty cool, and when they're weird, you just try to forget them.

mpls_hotdish1876 karma

Is shawarma any good, and how are Hulk's table manners?

Robert_DowneyJr2755 karma


The Hulk is a slob. Bruce Banner's etiquette is right out of the Tiffany Book of Table Manners. I remember shooting that shawarma post-credit scene, and having just finished Avengers: Age of Ultron, wondered how we'd beat it. Joss says "The way to win is to not try."

Zedab1805 karma

Hello, Iron Man

You've spoken before about your willingness to re-don the Iron Man Armor if Mel Gibson was to direct. First of all, on a scale of 1 to 11 how serious were you? Secondly, what do you think Mel Gibson would bring to the Iron Man series and would you still consider returning if he does not direct?

Robert_DowneyJr2576 karma

It was an offhanded remark to a journalist and friend. I have other projects in mind for Mel and I - sooner than later the Marvel Roster will be made public and all questions will be answered.

LeoRubio1756 karma

Mr. Downey Jr., pancakes or waffles?

Robert_DowneyJr2908 karma

I'm stumped. Can't I have a little bit of both?

courtiebabe4201715 karma


Robert_DowneyJr3460 karma

In order of occurrence:



and the daughter we're having in November.

globochememployee1665 karma

If you could develop any book into a movie, what would it be and why? Which character would you play?

Robert_DowneyJr2601 karma

Gore Vidal wrote an excellent novel around 1962, about an emperor, Julian. I believe he was just after Constantine and Constantius, so roughly 4th Century Common Era (A.D.). I'm too old to play him, but it's an incredible story.

Pantlmn1640 karma

You risked everything you owned to make the first Iron Man movie. How did you found the courage to do that?

Robert_DowneyJr2877 karma

No risk, no reward.

There are times in our lives when you gotta put all your chips in the middle.

phreezinc1561 karma

What are the chances of a Weird Science sequel? Please say 100%. Kthx.

Robert_DowneyJr2737 karma


You're welcome.

B0NERSTORM1367 karma

Was is intimidating having Robert Duvall as a father in The Judge?

Robert_DowneyJr1877 karma

If anything, it was more a sense of profound respect. But putting him on the stand was definitely one of the trickier things I've ever attempted.

Tsukeo1337 karma

Would you ever play in Doctor Who if you got the opportunity?

Robert_DowneyJr2329 karma

It's funny you'd bring that up. A writer asked me to watch a particular episode about a month ago, in hopes of helping us break story on a project. An incredible series. Anything's possible.

Stoooooooo1144 karma

What is the best/funniest practical joke you have seen happen on the set?

Robert_DowneyJr1671 karma

I'm terrible at recalling practical jokes...

I hear about a lot of these onset practical jokes, I don't recall having witnessed one. Shoots can be pretty high strung - performance anxiety, all that. You wouldn't want to send them over the edge.

DPNovitzky1125 karma

Thanks for doing this AMA, and welcome to Reddit! You have a lot of great one liners over the Avengers series, as well as Iron Man. How many of those lines were scripted vs ad-libbed?

Not so serious follow up question. You've been called the perfect Tony Stark. How do you respond to that?

Robert_DowneyJr1523 karma

I'd say about half and half. Oftentimes, on the day, they'll scribble out a bunch of alternatives, and see which one works best in the edit.

RDJisMySpiritAnimal1074 karma

Hi RDJ! I’m a huge fan of your work! I’m currently in grad school for mental health / drug & alcohol counseling and I just wanted to let you know that your story / triumph over addiction is a huge inspiration to me, so thank you for being amazing :) Anyway, my question for you is: What’s the best advice anyone has ever given you and/or what advice would you most like to pass along to others?

P.S. You are very handsome.

Robert_DowneyJr1460 karma


Good luck, that's a challenging and rewarding profession (so I'm told).

I guess the main thing is to bring a sense of loving service into whatever you do. So even on a bad day, it's not such a bummer.

SC971051 karma

Are you a cat or dog person?

Robert_DowneyJr2023 karma

So far, cats. But we've had some great dogs over the years.

Robert_DowneyJr2291 karma

You gotta really feel it with a dog. Cats are obviously more independent, so as long as they don't mind you, everything's cool.

DayWalkerRunner1026 karma

Do you have any childhood pets that you would like to fondly reminisce about?

Robert_DowneyJr1773 karma

Yes, thank you. I fondly recall a Yorkshire terrier named Sturgis. I teased him mercilessly. I beg his forgiveness. We were buddies, though.

Kotev930 karma

I don't know why, but I want to know... Are you into video games? If yes, whats your favorite game? Also, what music had you been listening to lately?

Robert_DowneyJr1741 karma

I have enough trouble getting online. I wish I was a gamer. It seems like gamers have more fun!

Kismekate828 karma

My favorite movie remains Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang. Do you have any interest in returning to film noir? Personally, I think you absolutely thrive in that genre.

Robert_DowneyJr1263 karma

Thank you, first of all!

The Perry Mason project we're developing is kind of a pre-"Chinatown" gumshoe thriller with some courtroom stakes, and action sequences. So you've got one in the pipes, just for you.

mapleleafs64822 karma

If you were stuck on an island and could only bring 5 things what would they be?

Robert_DowneyJr2202 karma

A boat, an umbrella, my family, a bouncy house, and a really big teepee. Then it would just be an eco-lodge vacation.

cwatts7283789 karma

What is your favorite memory from filming Bowfinger?

Robert_DowneyJr1284 karma

I remember driving a classic convertible, first day of shooting, no experience with the car, it was a big boat, and I have to fit it right into a parking spot with a sandbag, that sort of thing. And I remember being so proud that i didn't bang up the car, or overshoot the mark and knock over the monitors or something.

camitake01747 karma

Coffee or Tea? :) Thank you for doing this!! <3 i love you!

Robert_DowneyJr1754 karma

Coffee in the morning, tea in the afternoon.

Jechtshot93742 karma

What is your favorite part of filmmaking aside from acting?

Also, what's one movie you would recommend everyone to watch that inspired your craft and/or love for film?

(Kiss Kiss Bang Bang is still one of my favorite movies, thanks for all your amazing work!)

Robert_DowneyJr1160 karma

Development can be super-rewarding. But to be honest, probably promotion. Once you have a product you believe in, taking it on the road, and telling it!

If you haven't seen Gerard Depardieu and Andie McDowell in Green Card, I highly suggest it.

kn1214735 karma

Hi Mr. Downey! Are there any nonprofits or causes you're currently supporting?

Robert_DowneyJr1210 karma


One is Cinefamily, it's a really cool theater and group of aficionados, and some of the best programming in the country. Also, Scott Budnick, the producer of the Hangover series, has launched ARC, the Anti-Recidivism Coalition, aimed at education being the bridge between incarceration and re-entry.

globochememployee691 karma

How good are the chances that you would host SNL in the future?

Robert_DowneyJr1215 karma

Moderate to good.

Eddog21664 karma

Hey Mr. Downey Jr!

I am a big fan of yours, and really loved your roles in Iron Man And the Avengers, as well as Tropic thunder, of course. Other than asking for an autograph, which I'd totally love, I wanted to ask you how you deal with stress, and what are good ways to prevent stressful situations? Thank you very much for doing this AMA, and I hope you have a great day, sir.

Robert_DowneyJr1961 karma

It's important to remember to eat, catch yourself when you're getting irritable, recognize when you're feeling lonely, and not burn out when you're tired.

orbitalfreak645 karma

I loved you in the role of Charlie Chaplin.

If you were to star in another biopic, who would you like to cover?

Robert_DowneyJr1811 karma

Hard to say. I suspect when this superhero stuff gets tired, I'll look for a historical character and dig deeper than ever. And then I bet Al Pacino will win that year anyway.

kayytx497 karma

"Instagram: Stay tuned..." — can we expect lots of pictures of your cats?

Robert_DowneyJr1210 karma

If he'll sign the waiver, it should be quite a barrage. I haven't cleared it with his agent yet.

By the way, we have two cats. Both extremely photogenic.

Velorium_Camper480 karma

What’s the coolest thing you’ve collected on the set of one of the movies/shows you’ve done?

Robert_DowneyJr814 karma

Probably costumes. I remember after doing Chaplin, 12 boxes arriving from the studio, I think there were 56 outfits. I'm sure I have 3 or 4 left. I donated some, wore some for theme weddings (back to the other question)... I wish I'd kept 'em all. It would be fun to do a retrospective.

RedFollower396 karma

What is the most nerdiest item you own?

Robert_DowneyJr818 karma

I have a Charlie Brown baseball cap that literally looks like something Schroeder would wear. I'm American, how could I not be a Peanuts fan?

cptfalconcrunch366 karma

Mr. Downey Junior! Huge fan of your work, and thank you for doing this AMA. Coincidentally I actually just watched Iron Man 1 and 2 last night for the first time, fantastic job. Ever since I saw you for the first time dancing with Jack Black and Ben Stiller on American idol back in '08, I had always wondered how you got so smooth with your dancing and just all around being. So, what do you attribute your skills in those departments to? Looking forward to seeing your performance in The Judge! Cheers!

Robert_DowneyJr642 karma

I'm an okay dancer. I remember attending modern jazz classes in New York when I was a teenager, and instructors stopping the class and asking me if I wouldn't mind leaving. Correct. I don't know how smooth I am, but about 25 years ago, while I was prepping for Chaplin, had an amazing education in movement from a variety of experts. Ben Kamen, Johnny Hutch, Lord Attenborough himself...

Meta911348 karma

Hey Robert! I love you. What is your favorite late-night snack and why?

Thanks for coming!

Robert_DowneyJr695 karma

I love you too!

Here it comes: gluten-free crackers, almond butter, cherry jam, and rice milk. It gives you a little protein... sometimes just a handful of Rice Chex'll do it.

Capt_Chaos347 karma

The Judge looks incredible. How satisfied are you with the end cut?

Robert_DowneyJr738 karma

It's the closest thing to a perfect film I've ever been part of.

Bleek213299 karma

Just watched back to school the other day; were you cool with wearing all of the extreme clothing? And what was it like to work with Rodney Dangerfield?

Robert_DowneyJr564 karma

Rodney Dangerfield was a true original. Extremely kind. Wickedly funny. Forget the costumes - I had more gelatine in my hair than you'd use for 100 bowls of Jell-O! You could literally bounce a tennis ball off my hair. It was crispy - it turned into, like, they were like bamboo horns. It was the best.

isablaubear266 karma

What dessert are you passionate about?

Robert_DowneyJr474 karma

Tarte tatin.

DayWalkerRunner198 karma

Who is more suave, you or Billy Bob Thornton?

Robert_DowneyJr406 karma

As evidenced by the contingency of swooning ladies on the set of The Judge, I have to concede to Mr. Thornton.

Frankthabunny175 karma

What's on your iPod right now?

Robert_DowneyJr513 karma

Lots of Cocteau twins, Jean-Luc Ponty...Eric Satie, and as usual, LCD Soundsystem.

thebiglibrarian139 karma

Hi, big fan, quick question.

What is your favorite book and why?

Much obliged!

Robert_DowneyJr310 karma

I can't say "favorite book," but reading all the J.D. Salinger novels and short stories in my teens was a pretty big deal.

sthylen133 karma

Dear Mr. Downey Jr.

First off I’m a huge fan of yours, and I had two questions for you. First off, your singing blew me away when I saw a clip of you singing in an Ally Mcbeal episode, I know you released a jazz album a few years back, but do u have any intentions on working on a follow-up album? Also, I’ve heard that Mel Gibson is notorious for pranking his co-stars, were there any interesting stories from your time with him when you guys were filming Air America? P.S. You’re always wearing the coolest Rock and Roll band t-shirts in your movies Black Sabbath (1978 US Tour) in Avengers and the Metallica (Damaged Justice) in The Judge, any connections?

Robert_DowneyJr245 karma

Now I guess I should go directly to the studio from this AMA. The next album will be out tomorrow morning, if I get crackin'!

I heard there was a lot of rats in the freezer during Conspiracy Theory, but Julia Roberts was on the receiving end of those. Probably rubber rats, you know.

That was a coincidence of sorts. Get ready for Avengers: Age of Ultron - I take the t-shirts in a different direction. More iconic.

RainbowInCurvedAir108 karma

Wait, what about Emerson, Lake, and Palmer?

Robert_DowneyJr185 karma

I thought that would be a funny name for my character's law firm. I also figured that Billy Bob's character came from a rival law firm called "Duey, Pickem & Howe."

theArnoldFans192 karma

There's a picture of you with Arnold Schwarzenegger so I was wondering how often you PUMP IRON and WHO are your FITNESS role models?

Robert_DowneyJr220 karma


I tend to do a lot of strength training for the Marvel pics, but more just to not look like Olive Oyl next to all of the other studs.

I wouldn't know that I... have any? I do have a great trainer, named Brad Bose, a great martial arts instructor named Eric Oram, and I also train with the Tracy Anderson system. But that's more Susan's field of expertise.

onthecrystalship68 karma

My brother is a huge fan and wants to know who your least favourite superhero is.

And as a redditor, I must know: Would you rather face a horse sized duck or 100 duck sized horses?

Robert_DowneyJr176 karma

I'm a Marvel guy. So it's apparent what team I'm on.


Duck-sized horses. I'd put on my tap shoes and lay waste to them, as I shuffled off to Buffalo...

Ender11737 karma

What is your favorite memory from any Comic-Con?

Robert_DowneyJr74 karma

I remember once... I'll just go back to this year, I had the idea of a Pelican box full of roses, and it's amazing what the Avengers: Age of Ultron cast, there are so many players on the field now, it just warms my heart.

minimoosi21 karma

This may be the most important question you will receive today: boxers or briefs? And in what colour?

Robert_DowneyJr51 karma



downeyobsessed18 karma

When are you going to make another album?

Robert_DowneyJr51 karma

Somebody asked me that the other night. I guess I'd better get back in the studio. And it would be fun to make a more orchestral attempt at songwriting.