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Robert Downey Jr: 'I've done all I can' with Iron Man character

Actor says he's "eternally grateful" for his 10-year superhero run.

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Gael Cooper
CNET editor Gael Fashingbauer Cooper, a journalist and pop-culture junkie, is co-author of "Whatever Happened to Pudding Pops? The Lost Toys, Tastes and Trends of the '70s and '80s," as well as "The Totally Sweet '90s." She's been a journalist since 1989, working at Mpls.St.Paul Magazine, Twin Cities Sidewalk, the Minneapolis Star Tribune, and NBC News Digital. She's Gen X in birthdate, word and deed. If Marathon candy bars ever come back, she'll be first in line.
Expertise Breaking news, entertainment, lifestyle, travel, food, shopping and deals, product reviews, money and finance, video games, pets, history, books, technology history, generational studies. Credentials
  • Co-author of two Gen X pop-culture encyclopedia for Penguin Books. Won "Headline Writer of the Year"​ award for 2017, 2014 and 2013 from the American Copy Editors Society. Won first place in headline writing from the 2013 Society for Features Journalism.
Gael Cooper
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Robert Downey Jr. is thankful for his role as Iron Man, but says he's finished playing the character.

Marvel Studios

Superheroes can live on for as long as the company that created them chooses to keep telling their stories. But actors have limited careers. Robert Downey Jr. says his days playing Iron Man are over and he's grateful for the decade he spent playing the troubled, smart-mouthed inventor-turned-hero.

"I've done all I could with that character and can do other things now," Downey Jr. told the Hindustan Times in a recent interview. "Now, being middle-aged, you start looking at the back nine and realize this is all part of the journey, and things end. I am fortunate and eternally grateful to have wound up where I have."

Downey first took on the role of Tony Stark and his super alter-ego in 2008's Iron Man, the first film in the MCU . His apparent last appearance in the role came in 2019's Avengers: Endgame. There have been reports that he could reprise the role, perhaps only in a cameo appearance, in Black Widow, which has been postponed until May of 2021.

Downey, 55, says he's been spending a lot of time with his family and is trying not to be overwhelmed by the coronavirus pandemic. He starred as Dr. John Dolittle, the fictional English veterinarian who can talk to animals, in the 2020 feature film Dolittle. Upcoming work includes a part in Jamie Foxx's 2021 sports comedy, All-Star Weekend, as well a third film in the Sherlock Holmes series of movies.

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