Robert Downey Jr. is one of the highest-paid actors of today, not to mention one of the most loved ones. Through his acting, he has made fans fall head over heels for him and his characters. Best known for his time as Iron Man, the actor is linked to the Marvel Cinematic Universe even after the character’s death. With the effortless way Robert Downey Jr. plays his characters, people might think that it’s as easy as ABC for him.
However, it was not always easy for him. Before becoming the mega superstar he is today, Robert Downey Jr. went through a cycle of drug and alcohol abuse and he even had a few run-ins with the law. He has also spent some time behind bars during this time. The substance abuse reached such an extent that he would use drugs in-between film breaks and the people close to him had to help him out, including Jodie Foster and Sean Penn.
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Robert Downey Jr’s Friends Looked Out for him
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Robert Downey Jr. eventually turned his life around and has now left the bad days far behind him. However, substance abuse problems do not resolve overnight. During the time when Downey was filming for Jodie Foster’s Home for the Holidays, he would use up the time between film breaks to abuse black tar heroin. The docuseries, Robert Downey Jr.: The Price of Fame, mentions the incident when Foster wrote Downey a note stating that she was worried about his future.
Radio host, Kellie Rasberry revealed on the docuseries that while Foster allegedly wrote a heartfelt note to Downey, he just laughed it off. Rasberry stated, “Jodie Foster allegedly wrote Robert a note hoping he would get help, but Robert just laughed it off.” According to journalist Raha Lewis, the note talked about how Foster was worried about Downey’s next project and his future.
She basically said, “You’re doing great on this film, but I know you’re loaded. And I’m not worried about you now, I’m worried about the next project, and what comes up next for you.”
Foster was not the only one who looked out for the Iron Man actor. His friend, Sean Penn, had made many attempts to talk him out of the lifestyle and eventually held an intervention for him.
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Sean Penn’s Thoughts on Robert Downey Jr. Being in Prison
Back in 1996, Downey was arrested for the possession of cocaine, heroin, and a pistol and later in 1999, was sentenced to prison for violating his probation. During the time he spent in prison, his friends would come to pay him occasional visits. One of those friends was Penn who talked to Vanity Fair about the ordeal.
He stated that even though he was behind bars, Downey’s humor was still intact but also mentioned that he was always hard to read. Penn added that the Due Date actor made him laugh a lot whenever he went to pay him a visit. While Penn believed that an intervention was necessary for Downey, the sentence was slowly becoming a “Cruel and unusual punishment” and stated that Downey needed to be free. His talent as an actor was too sacred to be put in prison.
“His humor was well intact. He seemed like a guy doing time, one day at a time. Robert’s always been a hard read, though, because of his sense of humor. It’s difficult for someone to say something as silly as ‘Boy, he’s doing great!’ But given that, he looked great and he made me laugh a lot… I felt that a sentence was needed—something had to happen—but now it’s entering what you’d call cruel and unusual punishment,” Penn told Vanity Fair. “We need Robert Downey free! We need him, just selfishly speaking, as an actor. His talent raises the bar. And the bar has dropped so low ever since they put him behind bars.”
It’s good to know that Downey had people around him who cared so much for his well-being. In the end, the actor did turn his life around and some of the credit has got to go to his loved ones, as well. Downey has left the substance abuse days in his past and is now one of the most respected actors in the entertainment industry. More power to him!
Source: Radar Online