i’m just gonna leave this here as a reminder that “hitting bottom” doesn’t mean “staying on bottom for the rest of your life and dying as a piece of crap”
I will never, ever, not reblog this.
*huggles RDJ* Anyone on here who loves him, someone posted an amazing story about him when he was younger. I wish knew where the link was so I could share it. Instead, it’s just cut and pasted below. If I find the link, I’ll replace it with that.
I will also say that I have read this several times now and it still makes me cry.
“True story: His Name is Robert Downey Jr.” by Dana Reinhardt
I’m willing to go out on a limb here and guess that most stories of kindness do not begin with drug addicted celebrity bad boys.
His name is Robert Downey Jr.
You’ve probably heard of him. You may or may not be a fan, but I am, and I was in the early 90’s when this story takes place.
It was at a garden party for the ACLU of Southern California. My stepmother was the executive director, which is why I was in attendance without having to pay the $150 fee. It’s not that I don’t support the ACLU, it’s that I was barely twenty and had no money to speak of.
I was escorting my grandmother. There isn’t enough room in this essay to explain to you everything she was, I would need volumes, so for the sake of brevity I will tell you that she was beautiful even in her eighties, vain as the day is long, and whip smart, though her particular sort of intelligence did not encompass recognizing young celebrities.
I pointed out Robert Downey Jr. to her when he arrived, in a gorgeous cream-colored linen suit, with Sarah Jessica Parker on his arm. My grandmother shrugged, far more interested in piling her paper plate with various unidentifiable cheeses cut into cubes. He wasn’t Carey Grant or Gregory Peck. What did she care?
The afternoon’s main honoree was Ron Kovic, whose story of his time in the Vietnam War that had left him confined to a wheelchair had recently been immortalized in the Oliver Stone film Born on the Fourth of July.
I mention the wheelchair because it played an unwitting role in what happened next.
We made our way to our folding chairs in the garden with our paper plates and cubed cheeses and we watched my stepmother give one of her eloquent speeches and a plea for donations, and there must have been a few other people who spoke but I can’t remember who, and then Ron Kovic took the podium, and he was mesmerizing, and when it was all over we stood up to leave, and my grandmother tripped.
We’d been sitting in the front row (nepotism has its privileges) and when she tripped she fell smack into the wheelchair ramp that provided Ron Kovic with access to the stage. I didn’t know that wheelchair ramps have sharp edges, but they do, at least this one did, and it sliced her shin right open.
The volume of blood was staggering.
I’d like to be able to tell you that I raced into action; that I quickly took control of the situation, tending to my grandmother and calling for the ambulance that was so obviously needed, but I didn’t. I sat down and put my head between my knees because I thought I was going to faint. Did I mention the blood?
Luckily, somebody did take control of the situation, and that person was Robert Downey Jr.
He ordered someone to call an ambulance. Another to bring a glass of water. Another to fetch a blanket. He took off his gorgeous linen jacket and he rolled up his sleeves and he grabbed hold of my grandmother’s leg, and then he took that jacket that I’d assumed he’d taken off only to it keep out of the way, and he tied it around her wound. I watched the cream colored linen turn scarlet with her blood.
He told her not to worry. He told her it would be alright. He knew, instinctively, how to speak to her, how to distract her, how to play to her vanity. He held onto her calf and he whistled. He told her how stunning her legs were.
She said to him, to my humiliation: “My granddaughter tells me you’re a famous actor but I’ve never heard of you.”
He stayed with her until the ambulance came and then he walked alongside the stretcher holding her hand and telling her she was breaking his heart by leaving the party so early, just as they were getting to know each other. He waved to her as they closed the doors. “Don’t forget to call me, Silvia,” he said. “We’ll do lunch.”
He was a movie star, after all.
Believe it or not, I hurried into the ambulance without saying a word. I was too embarrassed and too shy to thank him.
We all have things we wish we’d said. Moments we’d like to return to and do differently. Rarely do we get that chance to make up for those times that words failed us. But I did. Many years later.
I should mention here that when Robert Downey Jr. was in prison for being a drug addict (which strikes me as absurd and cruel, but that’s the topic for a different essay), I thought of writing to him. Of reminding him of that day when he was humanity personified. When he was the best of what we each can be. When he was the kindest of strangers.
But I didn’t.
Some fifteen years after that garden party, ten years after my grandmother had died and five since he’d been released from prison, I saw him in a restaurant.
I grew up in Los Angeles where celebrity sightings are commonplace and where I was raised to respect people’s privacy and never bother someone while they’re out having a meal, but on this day I decided to abandon the code of the native Angeleno, and my own shyness, and I approached his table.
I said to him, “I don’t have any idea if you remember this…” and I told him the story.
“I just wanted to thank you,” I said. “And I wanted to tell you that it was simply the kindest act I’ve ever witnessed.”
He stood up and he took both of my hands in his and he looked into my eyes and he said, “You have absolutely no idea how much I needed to hear that today.”
Video Munich (Germany) Press Conference (PART TWO)
Entire Transcription HERE
On the onscreen chemistry they share.
Paltrow: He’s my favorite person to work with, I love him so much as a person and an actor.
Downey Jr: Ok.
Paltrow: He doesn’t feel the same way about me.
Downey Jr: It’s crazy, were pretty intertwined, we hang out. Some people, they’re only close when they’re in front of cameras or they’re talking about how close they are even though they never hang out together. We make a point of spending time together.
Paltrow: We hang out a lot. I’m very close with his wife, I worship his child, my children worship him.
Downey Jr. Thank you.
Paltrow: It was very fun actually because my children loved him before they had any idea who he was so it was really fun when my son realized what was happening and so I think he loves you even more if that’s possible.
How Pepper copes with Tony’s womanizing past.
Paltrow: I think Pepper has to maintain a little bit of grit when it comes to Tony. I have a very close friend who is married to Rob Lowe and it’s a little bit of a similar thing. She’ll refer to his past and it’s a very specific, ‘Yeah, well, I’m sure you knew Rob in the 80s.’ It’s kind of that thing, when Pepper is with a guy like Tony who’s done everything and everyone, she has to keep some humor about it. Like my friends, what they have is a really strong and amazing connection. They are really soulmates. I think that’s what Tony and Pepper are. Despite everything, they really belong together but it’s her defense and sense of humor.
OKAY I LOVE THEM MORE THAN IT’S POSSIBLE *_*
Their beautiful friendship in real life is inspiring and they on screen chemistry it’s so beautiful and creates such a real love story. I love them. They’re genuine and lovely. I just… Love Them. As Pepperony and just like Bob and Gwyn.
Part of an article about Robert in Munich translated: ...”I’m wearing the Lederhosen today in honor of the 79th birthday of my mother Elsie, which was yesterday. She has German ancestors.”… …Not only did he come to munich to present his new movie, Downey joked: “Why did you take Justins monkey? I’m here to pick him up!”…. Paltrow: “I didn’t work with a 26 year old guy who wears no shirt and has not much to say, I worked with Robert Downey Jr. and that is artistically fulfilling - though he really looks great without a shirt.” (via chujo-hime)
…”He has the best ass in the world. I recommend grabbing it on the way out.”… (yes that’s what she said in the article!)
Part of an article about Robert in Munich translated:
...”I’m wearing the Lederhosen today in honor of the 79th birthday of my mother Elsie, which was yesterday. She has German ancestors.”…
…Not only did he come to munich to present his new movie, Downey joked: “Why did you take Justins monkey? I’m here to pick him up!”….
Paltrow: “I didn’t work with a 26 year old guy who wears no shirt and has not much to say, I worked with Robert Downey Jr. and that is artistically fulfilling - though he really looks great without a shirt.”