THE SYMPATHIZER and OPPENHEIMER Star Robert Downey Jr. Covers ESQUIRE’s April/May Issue

Posted on April 08, 2024


He helped launch the Marvel universe (would he wear the suit again??). He finally won his Oscar. But even in the small moments, he’s always on the verge of a new revelation. “Robert Downey Jr. Doesn’t See Things the Way You Do” by Ryan D’Agostino is on now and in the new April/May issue, available everywhere by April 16.




On how acting in The Sympathizer is different from Oppenheimer“I knew that playing Strauss, in Oppenheimer, was going to be like picking fly sh*t out of pepper—that it was going to be extremely exacting, that it was going to be . . . not confining, but liberating by its varied implicit limitations of what my usual toolbox is. So I had a feeling that, like a coiled spring, Sympathizer would be my unwind.”

On whether he would return to the Marvel Cinematic Universe: “Happily. It’s too integral a part of my DNA. That role chose me. And look, I always say, Never, ever bet against Kevin Feige. It is a losing bet. He’s the house. He will always win.”

On the “walking couples therapy” he and his wife Susan started doing during the pandemic: “Trying to figure out where we’re at, what’s pissing us off, what are we afraid of, what do we want, what will bring us closer together, how do we measure ourselves against relationships that we define as exemplary and not be repeaters or over-emulate? How do we want to shape our life?”

Longtime friend JODIE FOSTER on what made her believe in Downey when she directed him in Home for the Holidays: “What was so interesting about him then was what a genius he was—there was more creativity in his little finger than I will ever have in my whole life—but he did not have the discipline. He was so out there that all of that wonderful talent was kind of just, like, flailing his arms in the water and making a big mess. But it was in there somewhere, right? Because now he is somebody who’s become disciplined almost as a way of surviving. I have faith in people’s ability to change if they want it, and he really wanted it.”

On the death of his father: “I think when he left this earth, his soul was light as a feather. What better thing? It was a classy as f*ck exit, I’ll tell you that much. I don’t know your experience or anyone else’s, but I think there’s a fear for any son that his father will die like a coward.”

On Jimmy Kimmel’s opening-monologue joke about him at the Oscars: “I don’t care. I love Jimmy Kimmel. I think he’s a national treasure.”

On accepting his Academy Award, onstage in front of the world: “I was just trying to hold my mud.”


[Photo Credit:  Norman Jean Roy f0r Esquire Magazine]

Please review our Community Guidelines before posting a comment. Thank you!

blog comments powered by Disqus