Robert Downey Jr. Talks Iron Man and The Avengers.
In an interview for SUCCESS Magazine, the Iron Man actor talks blockbusters, his successful career, and how he handles these things.
Robert Downey Jr. recently sat down with Mike Zimmerman of SUCCESS Magazine, and talked about his approach to acting, and how the success of his films has changed him. Here are some excerpts:
On Iron Man's success:
“Oh yeah, it’s been quite an education for me, lo these many years,” he says. “In May of 2008, after Iron Man’s [hugely successful] opening weekend, I was suddenly informed that I was in a different place on Monday than I was on Friday when I woke up. Crazy. I trusted the people who put me on notice, so I made it my business to educate myself because it’s so easy to slip up, so many ways to drop the ball.”
“It really is just a matter of, for lack of a better phrase, God’s grace that anyone can maintain anything, let alone achieve something that has to be maintained.”
On getting the role of Tony Stark:
Kevin Feige, a friend of Downey’s who has now become one of the major creative forces at Marvel (now owned by Disney), casually mentioned to Downey years ago that Marvel had plans to launch its own slate of movies. Downey said, “Cool, maybe I can be your first guy.” He didn’t think anything of it, but next thing he knew, he was Tony Stark, the Man behind the Iron.
When asked how he handles blockbuster films:
Downey says it all boiled down to relationships, trust, accountability, “and developing those relationships so they can transcend the potential loss.”
On sequels and franchise possibilities:
Nobody knows that there’s going to be another one, but that it’s simply a franchise possibility with potential success. So how do you contribute to that success? There’s a bunch of ways. In the case of the first Iron Man and the first Sherlock, there were similar approaches by a small group of people wondering if we could hit it out of the infield. The real challenge begins after you have the opportunity to follow it up and do it again.”
On why he turned his life around:
“There’s nothing I like more,” he says, “than someone who rises, crashes and burns, and rises again—the whole phoenix metaphor—only because if you burn again, you’re a moron.” And he chuckles. “So it’s not fear of confirming that I’m a moron. I remember Tommy Lee Jones in an interview back around the time we were doing U.S. Marshals. Someone said, ‘What’s the most important word for you?’ And he said, ‘Honor.’ And I was like [scoffing], ‘Oh, honor, OK. Was he in the Marines or something?’ Ten, 15 years later, I couldn’t agree with him more.”
“For me, it’s just this: Are you in your own way, or out of your own way? Are you doing the right thing or is your heart heavy?”
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