As the press onslaught for Avengers: Age Of Ultron continues, Robert Downey Jr. has been on quite a roll, reminding people that he didn’t land the career-resurrecting role of arrogant, charismatic, combative genius Tony Stark solely because he looks good with a giant blue light on his chest. The Iron Man actor recently walked out of an interview with Channel 4 News’ Krishnan Guru-Murthy, after the interviewer presented him with a bountiful word salad of questions about his past indiscretions, covered in a light drizzle of stuttering self-justification. Now, Downey has levied that same unwillingness to suffer fools against the real demons of the moviemaking industry: indie filmmakers.
In a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly Radio , the actor was asked if he’d be interested in appearing in another low-budget independent movie to clear his palate after all the CGI robots fights. To which Downey responded with a flat, insistent, “No.” When asked why, the actor laughed, saying, “Because they’re exhausting, and sometimes they suck, and then you just go, ‘What was I thinking?’”
Warming to the topic, Downey elaborated on the inconveniences of appearing in a film with a mere six-figure budget, citing the unprofessionalism he’s encountered outside the major studios. “Because they’re, like, ‘Hey, man, we’re just running a couple of days behind. Do you think you could… stay through your birthday? And then come back on the Fourth of July? By the way, the crew—could you pay for the craft service for them?”
Downey, who turned 50 in April—hopefully while far away from indie filmmakers and their grubby demands for a few more sandwiches—also went after indie filmmakers’ deluded optimism. Roleplaying again as the hypothetical indie director who’s apparently been living in his head ever since, say, The Singing Detective, Downey said, “God, this is so powerful, what we’re doing. What did you think of the movie? Everyone here’s an artist.” He then responded in his own voice: “I think it’s mediocre. Most of you are kind of inexperienced and lame.”
In Downey’s defense, he said all this with his customary charm and sardonic wit, which will hopefully comfort all the inexperienced, lame directors who cast him in their mediocre indie films, back before Tony Stark came jetting into his life to save him from their crap.