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Robert Downey Jr. wants to fix the planet with AI, which should turn out fine, probably

Oh, hey, we picked this image at random, from Downey Jr.’s expansive library of films. Could have just as easily been Charlie Chaplin!
Screenshot: Marvel Entertainment

[This article contains a spoiler for Avengers: Endgame. You can probably guess which one.]

Having finally freed himself—after 10 years of toiling in the superhero mines—from probably ever having to play Tony Stark again, actor Robert Downey Jr. announced today that he’s…sort of about to play Tony Stark, again, except now in real life. Per Variety, the actor was speaking at Amazon’s Re:Mars technology conference today, when he announced that he’s tossing his name, star power, and apparently unquenchable reserves of sartorial style behind an organization calling itself The Footprint Coalition, which will reportedly attempt to clean up the planet using advanced robotics and nanotechnology, and will definitely not try to kill us all with a giant rock.


A noted AI enthusiast—he’s got a YouTube docu-series on the topic in the works—Downey Jr. talked up technology as a solution to the “quiet sense of crisis” he’s currently feeling about the world: “Between robotics and nanotechnology, we could clean up the planet significantly, if not totally, in 10 years,” he claimed, arguing for a solution, that, to our ears, sounds a lot like building a big suit of future tech armor around the entire world, which: Cool! Should go well.

To be fair, all The Footprint Coalition has actually produced so far is a web site where you can sign up for an email newsletter, but we’re sure that the kind of Vision Downey Jr. is espousing will definitely lead to good places, and definitely not to Chris Hemsworth standing shirtless in a cave somewhere, having surprisingly boring psychic visions about rocks.

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