An extended and revealing interview with Deadline gave fans an inside look at Robert Downey, Jr.’s career and what he thinks about playing Iron Man. Oh, and it provided that surprising but true headline (that we shamelessly borrowed from our friends there - thanks, Deadline!).
The actor says that Iron Man 3 took him out of a “five year flight of fancy” that he could remain an action star. A busted ankle on the set of that movie made him feel his age, and know his time was short. “Looking back, I’m surprised and really embarrassed that some middle aged guy was thinking like that. And I honestly don’t think like that presently. But I also know that it could happen again, this bit of a hypnosis that would make someone think that way.”
"I also think about how much easier it was to remember on this last Avengers [Age of Ultron] that I’m 20 years older than pretty much everyone there," the actor said. “That’s pretty much the cast. Ruffalo and I are a little closer in age and maybe Spader has a couple years on me, but you know what I mean.”
Speaking specifically on Iron Man 4, Downey backtracked ever so slightly on his "won’t do Iron Man 4" statements of the past, instead saying that his relationship with Iron Man is "all being talked about on a bunch of different levels right now." He was first very praising of Marvel Studios and specifically their president, though.
"Marvel keeps stepping up its game, and I appreciate the way Kevin Feige and all the creatives there think. They are as in the creative wheelhouse as any great studio has been at any point," said Downey. That leads him to look at things both from his own perspective and from Marvel’s. “So it becomes a matter of, at what point do I cease to be an asset to what they’re doing, and at what point do I feel I am spending so much time either shooting or promoting these films that I’m not actually able to get off the beachhead and do the kind of other stuff that is good for all of us. Each one of those movies is spread over two years and some people fit other things in.”
Citing his age, as he’s about to turn 50, and the fact that he’ll also soon have two young children (with one toddler and another on the way), as well as the films he’s producing with his wife as all being contributing factors to the “points of departure,” Downey did seem to still indicate that his journey as Tony Stark is nearing its conclusion.
Of course, after discussing his friend Mel Gibson, who he says is both repentant for his outspoken and anti-Semitic comments and has also “changed,” Downey offered up a scenario where he’d do Iron Man 4: if Gibson directed it. “Why not? That movie would be bananas,” he ended the interview.