Robert Downey Jr Responds to Kimmel's Oscar Addiction Joke

From legal struggles to cinematic triumph: Downey's incredible story.

by Nouman Rasool
Robert Downey Jr Responds to Kimmel's Oscar Addiction Joke
© Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Robert Downey Jr spoke candidly of Jimmy Kimmel's controversial Oscars monologue joke, in which Kimmel made reference to Downey's past issues with addiction. The year was also very eventful for Kimmel. This year, he came on stage in the status of the host of the 96th Academy Award, for the fourth time in a row since 2017.

Kimmel humorously alluded to the troubled path of Downey Jr at the ceremony's kickoff by stating, "This is Robert Downey Jr’s highest point of his career. well, one of the highest points." The moment escalated when Downey Jr, acknowledging the jest, signaled Kimmel to proceed beyond the joke.

This exchange was highlighted in Downey Jr's recent profile with Esquire, published this Monday. The actor, undisturbed by the past, expressed his admiration for Kimmel, describing him as "a national treasure." This gesture underscores Downey Jr's gracious demeanor, reflecting his resilience and maturity in facing references to his earlier life challenges.

In the awards, Downey Jr. bagged the Best Supporting Actor Award for his role in Christopher Nolan's "Oppenheimer," humorously thanking his "terrible childhood and the Academy" on receiving the same. However, Kimmel's attempt at humor raised ajson among fans, some of whom are bashing him for talking about such a sensitive issue in connection to Downey Jr's struggles with addiction.

Downey Jr's Comeback Journey

The road Robert Downey Jr has traveled, from a checkered past that culminated in drug-related legal wrangles between 1996 and 2001, to sobriety in July 2003, serves only to underline a great spirit.

His remarkable comeback was initially met with skepticism, particularly when being cast as Iron Man. David Maisel, former Marvel Studios president, shared insights into the contentious decision to cast Downey Jr, emphasizing the gamble on his recovery.

But the biggest hit of 2008 was "Iron Man," gathering worldwide box office receipts of more than $585 million. It helped significantly rehab Downey Jr.' s career while setting a template for the further development of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU).

His defining Tony Stark/Iron Man role came to be synonymous with the MCU as he went on to reprise the character through many sequels and ensemble films. Asked if he would be returning to the MCU, Downey Jr. is quoted saying, "We're working on it."He would go on to express his sentiment, which echoed an intense attachment within the industry to his character through the transformative decision to have him cast as Iron Man.

Meanwhile, Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige, who succeeded Maisel, pointed out that Downey Jr. taking on the role was one of the decisions that were "game-changing for Hollywood," as Downey Jr. was very instrumental in leading the way for what the MCU would eventually become.